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Identification and functional study of a novel variant of PAX9 causing tooth agenesis.

Oral Diseases 2024 March 22
OBJECTIVES: To search for pathogenic gene of a family with non-syndromic tooth agenesis, and explore the possible pathogenesis.

MATERIALS AND METHODS: A Chinese family with non-syndromic tooth agenesis was recruited and screened for the pathogenic variants by whole exome sequencing technology and co-segregation analysis. The subcellular localization of wild-type and mutant protein was detected by immunofluorescence assay. Cycloheximide chase assay was performed to examine the difference in degradation rate between mutant protein and wild-type one. Dual-luciferase reporter assays were conducted to explore the alterations of mutant protein in the regulation of downstream target genes.

RESULTS: A novel missense variant of PAX9 (c.296C>A:p.A99D) was found in this family. Bioinformatics software showed β-return and the random coil were shortened in the p.A99D. The variant did not affect the subcellular localization of PAX9, but the degradation rate of p.A99D was accelerated (p < 0.05). p.A99D inhibited the activation of downstream target gene BMP4 (p < 0.05).

CONCLUSIONS: This novel variant expands the pathogenic gene spectrum. The variant impaired the protein structure, accelerated the degradation of protein, and inhibited the activation of the downstream target gene BMP4, an upstream molecule in the TGF-β/BMP pathway, which may contribute to tooth agenesis in this family.

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