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

Characterization of the human fumarylacetoacetate hydrolase gene and identification of a missense mutation abolishing enzymatic activity.

Hereditary tyrosinemia type 1 is an autosomal recessive disease caused by a deficiency of the last enzyme in the catabolic pathway of tyrosine, fumarylacetoacetate hydrolase (FAH). To analyze the mutations involved in this disease, and as a first step towards elucidating the mechanisms regulating the transcription of the FAH gene, we have isolated and characterized the human gene coding for FAH. The gene contains 14 exons and spans approximately 35 kilobases of DNA. The 5' end of the gene is highly GC-rich, and eleven putative binding sites for the transcription factor Sp 1 were identified in the proximal region of the promoter. We investigated the molecular basis of FAH deficiency in a hereditary tyrosinemia type 1 patient whose liver FAH showed a very low enzymatic activity. Sequencing of the liver FAH cDNA of the patient revealed a C to A transversion in the FAH mRNA, which predicted the replacement of an alanine (A) residue with an aspartic acid (D) residue at position 134 (A134D) of the amino acid sequence of the corresponding protein. Direct sequencing of genomic DNA indicated that the patient was heterozygous for the A134D mutation. The allele that does not carry the A134D mutation was expressed at a very low level in the liver of the patient. Expression of the mutant allele in CV-1 cells confirmed that the A134D mutation was responsible for the lack of enzymatic activity in the liver of the patient.[1]


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