Ataxia telangiectasia is a rare neurodegenerative disease caused by biallelic mutations in the ataxia telangiectasia mutated gene. No cure is currently available for these patients but positive effects on neurologic features in AT patients have been achieved by dexamethasone administration through autologous erythrocytes (EryDex) in phase II and phase III clinical trials, leading us to explore the molecular mechanisms behind the drug action. During these investigations, new ATM variants, which originated from alternative splicing of ATM messenger, were discovered, and detected in vivo in the blood of AT patients treated with EryDex. Some of the new ATM variants, alongside an in silico designed one, were characterized and examined in AT fibroblast cell lines. ATM variants were capable of rescuing ATM activity in AT cells, particularly in the nuclear role of DNA DSBs recognition and repair, and in the cytoplasmic role of modulating autophagy, antioxidant capacity and mitochondria functionality, all of the features that are compromised in AT but essential for neuron survival. These outcomes are triggered by the kinase and further functional domains of the tested ATM variants, that are useful for restoring cellular functionality. The in silico designed ATM variant eliciting most of the functionality recover may be exploited in gene therapy or gene delivery for the treatment of AT patients.

New human ATM variants are able to regain ATM functions in ataxia telangiectasia disease

Ricci, Anastasia;Biancucci, Federica;Morganti, Gianluca;Magnani, Mauro;Menotta, Michele
2022

Abstract

Ataxia telangiectasia is a rare neurodegenerative disease caused by biallelic mutations in the ataxia telangiectasia mutated gene. No cure is currently available for these patients but positive effects on neurologic features in AT patients have been achieved by dexamethasone administration through autologous erythrocytes (EryDex) in phase II and phase III clinical trials, leading us to explore the molecular mechanisms behind the drug action. During these investigations, new ATM variants, which originated from alternative splicing of ATM messenger, were discovered, and detected in vivo in the blood of AT patients treated with EryDex. Some of the new ATM variants, alongside an in silico designed one, were characterized and examined in AT fibroblast cell lines. ATM variants were capable of rescuing ATM activity in AT cells, particularly in the nuclear role of DNA DSBs recognition and repair, and in the cytoplasmic role of modulating autophagy, antioxidant capacity and mitochondria functionality, all of the features that are compromised in AT but essential for neuron survival. These outcomes are triggered by the kinase and further functional domains of the tested ATM variants, that are useful for restoring cellular functionality. The in silico designed ATM variant eliciting most of the functionality recover may be exploited in gene therapy or gene delivery for the treatment of AT patients.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11576/2706250
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