Comprehensive analysis of the transcriptional landscape of the human FMR1 gene reveals two new long noncoding RNAs differentially expressed in Fragile X syndrome and Fragile X-associated tremor/ataxia syndrome

Chiara Pastori, Veronica J. Peschansky, Deborah S Barbouth, Arpit Mehta, Jose P. Silva, Claes R Wahlestedt

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

68 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The majority of the human genome is transcribed but not translated, giving rise to noncoding RNAs (ncRNAs), including long ncRNAs (lncRNAs, >200 nt) that perform a wide range of functions in gene regulation. The Fragile X mental retardation 1 (FMR1) gene is a microsatellite locus that in the general population contains <55 CGG repeats in its 5′-untranslated region. Expansion of this repeat region to a size of 55-200 CGG repeats, known as premutation, is associated with Fragile X tremor and ataxia syndrome (FXTAS). Further expansion beyond 200 CGG repeats, or full mutation, leads to FMR1 gene silencing and results in Fragile X syndrome (FXS). Using a novel technology called "Deep-RACE", which combines rapid amplification of cDNA ends (RACE) with next generation sequencing, we systematically interrogated the FMR1 gene locus for the occurrence of novel lncRNAs. We discovered two transcripts, FMR5 and FMR6. FMR5 is a sense lncRNA transcribed upstream of the FMR1 promoter, whereas FMR6 is an antisense transcript overlapping the 3′ region of FMR1. FMR5 was expressed in several human brain regions from unaffected individuals and from full and premutation patients. FMR6 was silenced in full mutation and, unexpectedly, in premutation carriers suggesting abnormal transcription and/or chromatin remodeling prior to transition to the full mutation. These lncRNAs may thus be useful as biomarkers, allowing for early detection and therapeutic intervention in FXS and FXTAS. Finally we show that FMR5 and FMR6 are expressed in peripheral blood leukocytes and propose future studies that correlate lncRNA expression with clinical outcomes.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)59-67
Number of pages9
JournalHuman Genetics
Volume133
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 2014

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Long Noncoding RNA
Fragile X Syndrome
Intellectual Disability
Genes
Mutation
Complementary DNA
Untranslated RNA
Chromatin Assembly and Disassembly
5' Untranslated Regions
Gene Silencing
Human Genome
Microsatellite Repeats
Fragile X Tremor Ataxia Syndrome
Leukocytes
Biomarkers
Technology
Brain
Population

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Genetics(clinical)
  • Genetics

Cite this

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title = "Comprehensive analysis of the transcriptional landscape of the human FMR1 gene reveals two new long noncoding RNAs differentially expressed in Fragile X syndrome and Fragile X-associated tremor/ataxia syndrome",
abstract = "The majority of the human genome is transcribed but not translated, giving rise to noncoding RNAs (ncRNAs), including long ncRNAs (lncRNAs, >200 nt) that perform a wide range of functions in gene regulation. The Fragile X mental retardation 1 (FMR1) gene is a microsatellite locus that in the general population contains <55 CGG repeats in its 5′-untranslated region. Expansion of this repeat region to a size of 55-200 CGG repeats, known as premutation, is associated with Fragile X tremor and ataxia syndrome (FXTAS). Further expansion beyond 200 CGG repeats, or full mutation, leads to FMR1 gene silencing and results in Fragile X syndrome (FXS). Using a novel technology called {"}Deep-RACE{"}, which combines rapid amplification of cDNA ends (RACE) with next generation sequencing, we systematically interrogated the FMR1 gene locus for the occurrence of novel lncRNAs. We discovered two transcripts, FMR5 and FMR6. FMR5 is a sense lncRNA transcribed upstream of the FMR1 promoter, whereas FMR6 is an antisense transcript overlapping the 3′ region of FMR1. FMR5 was expressed in several human brain regions from unaffected individuals and from full and premutation patients. FMR6 was silenced in full mutation and, unexpectedly, in premutation carriers suggesting abnormal transcription and/or chromatin remodeling prior to transition to the full mutation. These lncRNAs may thus be useful as biomarkers, allowing for early detection and therapeutic intervention in FXS and FXTAS. Finally we show that FMR5 and FMR6 are expressed in peripheral blood leukocytes and propose future studies that correlate lncRNA expression with clinical outcomes.",
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AU - Pastori, Chiara

AU - Peschansky, Veronica J.

AU - Barbouth, Deborah S

AU - Mehta, Arpit

AU - Silva, Jose P.

AU - Wahlestedt, Claes R

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N2 - The majority of the human genome is transcribed but not translated, giving rise to noncoding RNAs (ncRNAs), including long ncRNAs (lncRNAs, >200 nt) that perform a wide range of functions in gene regulation. The Fragile X mental retardation 1 (FMR1) gene is a microsatellite locus that in the general population contains <55 CGG repeats in its 5′-untranslated region. Expansion of this repeat region to a size of 55-200 CGG repeats, known as premutation, is associated with Fragile X tremor and ataxia syndrome (FXTAS). Further expansion beyond 200 CGG repeats, or full mutation, leads to FMR1 gene silencing and results in Fragile X syndrome (FXS). Using a novel technology called "Deep-RACE", which combines rapid amplification of cDNA ends (RACE) with next generation sequencing, we systematically interrogated the FMR1 gene locus for the occurrence of novel lncRNAs. We discovered two transcripts, FMR5 and FMR6. FMR5 is a sense lncRNA transcribed upstream of the FMR1 promoter, whereas FMR6 is an antisense transcript overlapping the 3′ region of FMR1. FMR5 was expressed in several human brain regions from unaffected individuals and from full and premutation patients. FMR6 was silenced in full mutation and, unexpectedly, in premutation carriers suggesting abnormal transcription and/or chromatin remodeling prior to transition to the full mutation. These lncRNAs may thus be useful as biomarkers, allowing for early detection and therapeutic intervention in FXS and FXTAS. Finally we show that FMR5 and FMR6 are expressed in peripheral blood leukocytes and propose future studies that correlate lncRNA expression with clinical outcomes.

AB - The majority of the human genome is transcribed but not translated, giving rise to noncoding RNAs (ncRNAs), including long ncRNAs (lncRNAs, >200 nt) that perform a wide range of functions in gene regulation. The Fragile X mental retardation 1 (FMR1) gene is a microsatellite locus that in the general population contains <55 CGG repeats in its 5′-untranslated region. Expansion of this repeat region to a size of 55-200 CGG repeats, known as premutation, is associated with Fragile X tremor and ataxia syndrome (FXTAS). Further expansion beyond 200 CGG repeats, or full mutation, leads to FMR1 gene silencing and results in Fragile X syndrome (FXS). Using a novel technology called "Deep-RACE", which combines rapid amplification of cDNA ends (RACE) with next generation sequencing, we systematically interrogated the FMR1 gene locus for the occurrence of novel lncRNAs. We discovered two transcripts, FMR5 and FMR6. FMR5 is a sense lncRNA transcribed upstream of the FMR1 promoter, whereas FMR6 is an antisense transcript overlapping the 3′ region of FMR1. FMR5 was expressed in several human brain regions from unaffected individuals and from full and premutation patients. FMR6 was silenced in full mutation and, unexpectedly, in premutation carriers suggesting abnormal transcription and/or chromatin remodeling prior to transition to the full mutation. These lncRNAs may thus be useful as biomarkers, allowing for early detection and therapeutic intervention in FXS and FXTAS. Finally we show that FMR5 and FMR6 are expressed in peripheral blood leukocytes and propose future studies that correlate lncRNA expression with clinical outcomes.

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