RESEARCH SUPPORT, NON-U.S. GOV'T
Growth hormone (GH) insensitivity syndrome with high serum GH-binding protein levels caused by a heterozygous splice site mutation of the GH receptor gene producing a lack of intracellular domain.
Most of the GH receptor (GHR) gene abnormalities causing GH insensitivity syndrome (GHIS) are located in the region coding the extracellular domain, and serum GH-binding protein (GHBP) levels, determined by ligand-mediated immunofunctional assay, are low in most of the patients with GHIS. We present here a heterozygous point mutation of the donor splice site in intron 9 of the GHR gene in two Japanese siblings with GHIS, whose serum GHBP levels were high. The same mutation was found in their mother as well. The analysis of ribonucleic acid from the peripheral leukocytes revealed complete skipping of exon 9 from one allele, but not the other, in the GHR complementary DNA and appearance of a premature stop codon in exon 10. The translated protein was truncated with deletion of 98% of the intracellular domain of the GHR, including boxes 1 and 2, which are critical for GH signal transduction and GHR internalization, respectively. Recently, it was shown that the truncated GHR lacking the intracellular domain was physiologically present in a minute amount, served as a negative regulator for GH signaling, and possessed increased capacity to generate GHBP. Therefore, the mutation found in our patients caused the pathogenetic production of the truncated GHR with a dominant negative effect on GH signaling, which is probably responsible for their short stature and high serum GHBP levels.
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