Congenital hypogonadotropic hypogonadism due to GnRH receptor mutations in three brothers reveal sites affecting conformation and coupling

Javier Tello, Claire Newton, Jerome Bouligand, Anne Guiochon-Mantel, Robert Millar, Jacques Young

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31 Citations (Scopus)
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Abstract

Congenital hypogonadotropic hypogonadism (CHH) is characterized by low gonadotropins and failure to progress normally through puberty. Mutations in the gene encoding the GnRH receptor (GNRHR1) result in CHH when present as compound heterozygous or homozygous inactivating mutations. This study identifies and characterizes the properties of two novel GNRHR1 mutations in a family in which three brothers display normosmic CHH while their sister was unaffected. Molecular analysis in the proband and the affected brothers revealed two novel non-synonymous missense GNRHR1 mutations, present in a compound heterozygous state, whereas their unaffected parents possessed only one inactivating mutation, demonstrating the autosomal recessive transmission in this kindred and excluding X-linked inheritance equivocally suggested by the initial pedigree analysis. The first mutation at c.845 C>G introduces an Arg substitution for the conserved Pro 282 in transmembrane domain (TMD) 6. The Pro282Arg mutant is unable to bind radiolabeled GnRH analogue. As this conserved residue is important in receptor conformation, it is likely that the mutation perturbs the binding pocket and affects trafficking to the cell surface. The second mutation at c.968 A>G introduces a Cys substitution for Tyr 323 in the functionally crucial N/DPxxY motif in TMD 7. The Tyr323Cys mutant has an increased GnRH binding affinity but reduced receptor expression at the plasma membrane and impaired G protein-coupling. Inositol phosphate accumulation assays demonstrated absent and impaired Gα(q/11) signal transduction by Pro282Arg and Tyr323Cys mutants, respectively. Pretreatment with the membrane permeant GnRHR antagonist NBI-42902, which rescues cell surface expression of many GNRHR1 mutants, significantly increased the levels of radioligand binding and intracellular signaling of the Tyr323Cys mutant but not Pro282Arg. Immunocytochemistry confirmed that both mutants are present on the cell membrane albeit at low levels. Together these molecular deficiencies of the two novel GNRHR1 mutations lead to the CHH phenotype when present as a compound heterozygote.
Original languageEnglish
Article numbere38456
JournalPLoS One
Volume7
Issue number6
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 5 Jun 2012

Keywords

  • Congenital hypogonadotropic hypogonadism (CHH)
  • GnRH receptor
  • GNRHR1 mutations
  • Autosomal recessive transmission
  • Tyr323Cys mutant

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