A duchenne muscular dystrophy gene hot spot mutation in dystrophin-deficient Cavalier King Charles Spaniels is amenable to exon 51 skipping

Gemma L. Walmsley, Virginia Arechavala-Gomeza, Marta Fernandez-Fuente, Margaret M. Burke, Nicole Nagel, Angela Holder, Rachael Stanley, Kate Chandler, Stanley L Marks, Francesco Muntoni, Diane G. Shelton, Richard J. Piercy

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

67 Scopus citations

Abstract

Background: Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD), which afflicts 1 in 3500 boys, is one of the most common genetic disorders of children. This fatal degenerative condition is caused by an absence or deficiency of dystrophin in striated muscle. Most affected patients have inherited or spontaneous deletions in the dystrophin gene that disrupt the reading frame resulting in unstable truncated products. For these patients, restoration of the reading frame via antisense oligonucleotide-mediated exon skipping is a promising therapeutic approach. The major DMD deletion "hot spot" is found between exons 45 and 53, and skipping exon 51 in particular is predicted to ameliorate the dystrophic phenotype in the greatest number of patients. Currently the mdx mouse is the most widely used animal model of DMD, although its mild phenotype limits its suitability in clinical trials. The Golden Retriever muscular dystrophy (GRMD) model has a severe phenotype, but due to its large size, is expensive to use. Both these models have mutations in regions of the dystrophin gene distant from the commonly mutated DMD "hot spot". Methodology/Principal Findings: Here we describe the severe phenotype, histopathological findings, and molecular analysis of Cavalier King Charles Spaniels with dystrophin-deficient muscular dystrophy (CKCS-MD). The dogs harbour a missense mutation in the 5′ donor splice site of exon 50 that results in deletion of exon 50 in mRNA transcripts and a predicted premature truncation of the translated protein. Antisense oligonucleotide-mediated skipping of exon 51 in cultured myoblasts from an affected dog restored the reading frame and protein expression. Conclusions/Significance:Given the small size of the breed, the amiable temperament and the nature of the mutation, we propose that CKCS-MD is a valuable new model for clinical trials of antisense oligonucleotide-induced exon skipping and other therapeutic approaches for DMD. Copyright:

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbere8647
JournalPLoS One
Volume5
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 13 2010

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)
  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
  • Medicine(all)

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    Walmsley, G. L., Arechavala-Gomeza, V., Fernandez-Fuente, M., Burke, M. M., Nagel, N., Holder, A., Stanley, R., Chandler, K., Marks, S. L., Muntoni, F., Shelton, D. G., & Piercy, R. J. (2010). A duchenne muscular dystrophy gene hot spot mutation in dystrophin-deficient Cavalier King Charles Spaniels is amenable to exon 51 skipping. PLoS One, 5(1), [e8647]. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0008647