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2.  Cardiotrophin-1 plasma levels are associated with the severity of hypertrophy in hypertrophic cardiomyopathy 
European Heart Journal  2010;32(2):177-183.
Aims
Cardiotrophin-1 (CT-1) is a cytokine that induces hypertrophy in cardiomyocytes and is associated with left ventricular hypertrophy (LVH) in hypertensive patients. The objective of this study was to evaluate whether plasma CT-1 is associated with hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM).
Methods and results
The study was performed in 124 patients with HCM. All patients underwent a full clinical evaluation and an echocardiogram. Left ventricular hypertrophy was evaluated by the measurement of the maximal LV wall thickness and the Spirito's LVH score. Plasma CT-1 was measured by an enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay. Compared with controls, patients with HCM exhibited higher (P < 0.001) plasma CT-1 levels. Significant correlations were found between CT-1 and maximal LV wall thickness (r = 0.284, P = 0.001) and the Spirito's LVH score (r = 0.287, P = 0.006) in HCM patients. In addition, the levels of CT-1 were higher (P = 0.02) in patients with severe LVH (maximal LV wall thickness ≥30 mm) than in patients with mild or moderate LVH (maximal LV wall thickness <30 mm).
Conclusions
These findings show that plasma CT-1 is associated with the severity of LVH in patients with HCM. Further studies are required to ascertain whether CT-1 is a diagnostic biomarker of this cardiomyopathy.
doi:10.1093/eurheartj/ehq400
PMCID: PMC3021387  PMID: 21059734
Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy; Cardiotrophin; Hypertrophy
3.  Novel missense mutations in exon 15 of desmoglein-2: Role of the intracellular cadherin segment in arrhythmogenic right ventricular cardiomyopathy? 
Heart Rhythm  2010;7(10):1446-1453.
Background
The diagnosis of arrhythmogenic right ventricular cardiomyopathy can be challenging. Disease-causing mutations in desmosomal genes have been identified. A novel diagnostic feature, loss of immunoreactivity for plakoglobin from the intercalated disks, recently was proposed.
Objective
The purpose of this study was to identify two novel mutations in the intracellular cadherin segment of desmoglein-2 (G812S and C813R in exon 15). Co-segregation of the G812S mutation with disease expression was established in a large Caucasian family. Endomyocardial biopsies of two individuals showed reduced plakoglobin signal at the intercalated disk.
Methods
To understand the pathologic changes occurring in the diseased myocardium, functional studies on three mutations in exon 15 of desmoglein-2 (G812C, G812S, C813R) were performed.
Results
Localization studies failed to detect any differences in targeting or stability of the mutant proteins, suggesting that they act via a dominant negative mechanism. Binding assays were performed to probe for altered binding affinities toward other desmosomal proteins, such as plakoglobin and plakophilin-2. Although no differences were observed for the mutated proteins in comparison to wild-type desmoglein-2, binding to plakophilin-2 depended on the expression system (i.e., bacterial vs mammalian protein expression). In addition, abnormal migration of the C813R mutant protein was observed in gel electrophoresis.
Conclusion
Loss of plakoglobin immunoreactivity from the intercalated disks appears to be the endpoint of complex pathologic changes, and our functional data suggest that yet unknown posttranslational modifications of desmoglein-2 might be involved.
doi:10.1016/j.hrthm.2010.08.007
PMCID: PMC2994644  PMID: 20708101
Arrhythmogenic right ventricular cardiomyopathy; Desmoglein-2; Desmosome; Genetics; Missense mutation; Plakophilin-2; ARVC, arrhythmogenic right ventricular cardiomyopathy; Cx43, connexin43; DSC2, desmocollin-2; DSG2, desmoglein-2; DSP, desmoplakin; GFP, green fluorescent protein; GST, glutathione-S-transferase; ICS, intracellular cadherin segment; PG, plakoglobin; PKP2, plakophilin-2; RV, right ventricle
4.  Screening mutations in myosin binding protein C3 gene in a cohort of patients with Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy 
BMC Medical Genetics  2010;11:67.
Background
MyBPC3 mutations are amongst the most frequent causes of hypertrophic cardiomyopathy, however, its prevalence varies between populations. They have been associated with mild and late onset disease expression. Our objectives were to establish the prevalence of MyBPC3 mutations and determine their associated clinical characteristics in our patients.
Methods
Screening by Single Strand Conformation Polymorphisms (SSCP) and sequencing of the fragments with abnormal motility of the MyBPC3 gene in 130 unrelated consecutive HCM index cases. Genotype-Phenotype correlation studies were done in positive families.
Results
16 mutations were found in 20 index cases (15%): 5 novel [D75N, V471E, Q327fs, IVS6+5G>A (homozygous), and IVS11-9G>A] and 11 previously described [A216T, R495W, R502Q (2 families), E542Q (3 families), T957S, R1022P (2 families), E1179K, K504del, K600fs, P955fs and IVS29+5G>A]. Maximum wall thickness and age at time of diagnosis were similar to patients with MYH7 mutations [25(7) vs. 27(8), p = 0.16], [46(16) vs. 44(19), p = 0.9].
Conclusions
Mutations in MyBPC3 are present in 15% of our hypertrophic cardiomyopathy families. Severe hypertrophy and early expression are compatible with the presence of MyBPC3 mutations. The genetic diagnosis not only allows avoiding clinical follow up of non carriers but it opens new possibilities that includes: to take preventive clinical decisions in mutation carriers than have not developed the disease yet, the establishment of genotype-phenotype relationship, and to establish a genetic diagnosis routine in patients with familial HCM.
doi:10.1186/1471-2350-11-67
PMCID: PMC2880974  PMID: 20433692

Results 1-4 (4)