Impact of human pathogenic micro-insertions and micro-deletions on post-transcriptional regulation
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Small insertions/deletions (INDELs) of =21 bp comprise 18% of all recorded mutations causing human inherited disease and are evident in 24% of documented Mendelian diseases. INDELs affect gene function in multiple ways: for example, by introducing premature stop codons that either lead to the production of truncated proteins or affect transcriptional efficiency. However, the means by which they impact post-transcriptional regulation, including alternative splicing, have not been fully evaluated. In this study, we collate disease-causing INDELs from the Human Gene Mutation Database (HGMD) and neutral INDELs from the 1000 Genomes Project. The potential of these two types of INDELs to affect binding-site affinity of RNA-binding proteins (RBPs) was then evaluated. We identified several sequence features that can distinguish disease-causing INDELs from neutral INDELs. Moreover, we built a machine-learning predictor called PinPor (predicting pathogenic small insertions and deletions affecting post-transcriptional regulation, http://watson.compbio.iupui.edu/pinpor/) to ascertain which newly observed INDELs are likely to be pathogenic. Our results show that disease-causing INDELs are more likely to ablate RBP-binding sites and tend to affect more RBP-binding sites than neutral INDELs. Additionally, disease-causing INDELs give rise to greater deviations in binding affinity than neutral INDELs. We also demonstrated that disease-causing INDELs may be distinguished from neutral INDELs by several sequence features, such as their proximity to splice sites and their potential effects on RNA secondary structure. This predictor showed satisfactory performance in identifying numerous pathogenic INDELs, with a Matthews correlation coefficient (MCC) value of 0.51 and an accuracy of 0.75.
Human Molecular Genetics
© 2014 Oxford University Press. This is a pre-copy-editing, author-produced PDF of an article accepted for publication in Human Molecular Genetics following peer review. The definitive publisher-authenticated version. Impact of human pathogenic micro-insertions and micro-deletions on post-transcriptional regulation, Human Molecular Genetics, Vol.23 (11): 3024-3034 is available online at: dx.doi.org/10.1093/hmg/ddu019.
Quantitative Genetics (incl. Disease and Trait Mapping Genetics)