Eva Pros and Juana Fernández-Rodríguez contributed equally to this work.
Antisense therapeutics for neurofibromatosis type 1 caused by deep intronic mutations†
Article first published online: 24 FEB 2009
© 2009 Wiley-Liss, Inc.
Volume 30, Issue 3, pages 454–462, March 2009
How to Cite
Pros, E., Fernández-Rodríguez, J., Canet, B., Benito, L., Sánchez, A., Benavides, A., Ramos, F. J., López-Ariztegui, M. A., Capellá, G., Blanco, I., Serra, E. and Lázaro, C. (2009), Antisense therapeutics for neurofibromatosis type 1 caused by deep intronic mutations. Hum. Mutat., 30: 454–462. doi: 10.1002/humu.20933
Communicated by David N. Cooper
- Issue published online: 24 FEB 2009
- Article first published online: 24 FEB 2009
- Manuscript Accepted: 7 OCT 2008
- Manuscript Received: 28 JUL 2008
- Carlos III Health Institute. Grant Numbers: BF03/00455, ISCIIIPI05/1149, ISCIIIRETICRD06/0020/1051)
- Spanish Ministry of Education and Science. Grant Numbers: SAF2005-00833, SAF2006-05399
- Catalan Health Institute and Autonomous Government of Catalonia. Grant Number: 2005SGR00018
- neurofibromatosis 1;
- antisense oligonucleotide therapy;
- deep intronic mutation
Neurofibromatosis type 1 (NF1) is an autosomal dominant disorder affecting 1:3,500 individuals. Disease expression is highly variable and complications are diverse. However, currently there is no specific treatment for the disease. NF1 is caused by mutations in the NF1 gene, approximately 2.1% of constitutional mutations identified in our population are deep intronic mutations producing the insertion of a cryptic exon into the mature mRNA. We used antisense morpholino oligomers (AMOs) to restore normal splicing in primary fibroblast and lymphocyte cell lines derived from six NF1 patients bearing three deep intronic mutations in the NF1 gene (c.288+2025T>G, c.5749+332A>G, and c.7908-321C>G). AMOs were designed to target the newly created 5′ splice sites to prevent the incorporation of cryptic exons. Our results demonstrate that AMO treatment effectively restored normal NF1 splicing at the mRNA level for the three mutations studied in the different cell lines analyzed. We also found that AMOs had a rapid effect that lasted for several days, acting in a sequence-specific manner and interfering with the splicing mechanism. Finally, to test whether the correction of aberrant NF1 splicing also restored neurofibromin function to wild-type levels, we measured the amount of Ras-GTP after AMO treatment in primary fibroblasts. The results clearly show an AMO-dependent decrease in Ras-GTP levels, which is consistent with the restoration of neurofibromin function. To our knowledge this is the first time that an antisense technique has been usedsuccessfully to correct NF1 mutations opening the possibility of a therapeutic strategy for this type of mutation not only for NF1 but for other genetic disorders. Hum Mutat 30, 454–462, 2009. © 2009 Wiley-Liss, Inc.