Loss‐of‐function variants in K v 11.1 cardiac channels as a biomarker for SUDEP

Loss‐of‐function variants in K v 11.1 cardiac channels as a biomarker for SUDEP.

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Item Type: Article
Official URL: https://doi.org/10.1002/acn3.51381
Journal or Publication Title: Annals of Clinical and Translational Neurology
Date: 2021
Divisions: Molecular Cardiology
Bioinformatics and Molecular Genetics
Depositing User: General Admin
Identification Number: 10.1002/acn3.51381
ISSN: 2328-9503
Date Deposited: 10 Jun 2021 05:29

Objective: To compare the frequency and impact on the channel function of KCNH2 variants in SUDEP patients with epilepsy controls comprising patients older than 50 years, a group with low SUDEP risk, and establish loss-of-function KCNH2 variants as predictive biomarkers of SUDEP risk.

Methods: We searched for KCNH2 variants with a minor allele frequency of <5%. Functional analysis in Xenopus laevis oocytes was performed for all KCNH2 variants identified.

Results: KCNH2 variants were found in 11.1% (10/90) of SUDEP individuals compared to 6.0% (20/332) of epilepsy controls (p = 0.11). Loss-of-function KCNH2 variants, defined as causing >20% reduction in maximal amplitude, were observed in 8.9% (8/90) SUDEP patients compared to 3.3% (11/332) epilepsy controls suggesting about threefold enrichment (nominal p = 0.04). KCNH2 variants that did not change channel function occurred at a similar frequency in SUDEP (2.2%; 2/90) and epilepsy control (2.7%; 9/332) cohorts (p > 0.99). Rare KCNH2 variants (<1% allele frequency) associated with greater loss of function and an ~11-fold enrichment in the SUDEP cohort (nominal p = 0.03). In silico tools were unable to predict the impact of a variant on function highlighting the need for electrophysiological analysis.

Interpretation: These data show that loss-of-function KCNH2 variants are enriched in SUDEP patients when compared to an epilepsy population older than 50 years, suggesting that cardiac mechanisms contribute to SUDEP risk. We propose that genetic screening in combination with functional analysis can identify loss-of-function KCNH2 variants that could act as biomarkers of an individual's SUDEP risk.

© 2021 The Authors. Annals of Clinical and Translational Neurology published by Wiley Periodicals LLC on behalf of American Neurological Association.

Soh, Ming S.
Bagnall, Richard D.
Bennett, Mark F.
Bleakley, Lauren E.
Mohamed Syazwan, Erlina S.
Marie Phillips, A.
Chiam, Mathew D. F.
McKenzie, Chaseley E.
Hildebrand, Michael
Crompton, Douglas
Bahlo, Melanie
Semsarian, Christopher
Scheffer, Ingrid E.
Berkovic, Samuel F.
Reid, Christopher A.
Last Modified: 10 Jun 2021 05:29
URI: https://eprints.centenary.org.au/id/eprint/975

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