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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

A new h allele detected in Europe has a missense mutationin alpha(1,2)-fucosyltransferase motif II.

BACKGROUND: The FUT1 gene encodes an alpha(1,2)-fucosyltransferase (H transferase), which determines the blood group H. Nonfunctional alleles of this gene, called h alleles and carrying loss-of-function mutations, are observed in the exceedingly rare Bombay phenotype. Twenty-three distinct h alleles have been characterized at the molecular level in various populations. The FUT2 (SE) gene is highly homologous to FUT1 (H:). STUDY DESIGN AND METHODS: The FUT1 gene of an Austrian proband with the Bombay phenotype was characterized by nucleotide sequencing of the full-length coding sequence. A PCR method using sequence-specific primers for FUT2 genotyping in whites was developed. The plasma alpha(1,2)-fucosyltransferase activity was determined. The distribution of the mutations underlying 24 h alleles and 7 se alleles was analyzed. RESULTS: The proband carried a new h allele. Two nucleotide changes, G785A and C786A, in codon 262 of the FUT1 gene resulted in the replacement of serine by lysine. No alpha(1,2)-fucosyltransferase activity was detected in the proband's plasma. The proband was homozygous for the seG428A allele. Six of 17 missense mutations in nonfunctional h and se alleles occurred in highly conserved fucosyltransferase motifs. No loss-of-function mutation was observed in the aminoterminal section encompassing the transmembraneous helix. CONCLUSION: The missense mutation S262K in the FUT1 gene caused the loss of H transferase activity. The analysis of the distribution of mutations in nonfunctional FUT1 and FUT2 genes can point to functionally important domains in the H transferase.[1]


  1. A new h allele detected in Europe has a missense mutationin alpha(1,2)-fucosyltransferase motif II. Wagner, T., Vadon, M., Staudacher, E., Schmarda, A., Gassner, C., Helmberg, W., Lanzer, G., Flegel, W.A., Wagner, F.F. Transfusion (2001) [Pubmed]
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