UCL Discovery
UCL home » Library Services » Electronic resources » UCL Discovery

Gain-of-function GABRB3 variants identified in vigabatrin-hypersensitive epileptic encephalopathies

Absalom, NL; Liao, VWY; Kothur, K; Indurthi, DC; Bennetts, B; Troedson, C; Mohammad, SS; ... Chebib, M; + view all (2020) Gain-of-function GABRB3 variants identified in vigabatrin-hypersensitive epileptic encephalopathies. Brain Communications , 2 (2) fcaa162. 10.1093/braincomms/fcaa162. Green open access

[thumbnail of fcaa162.pdf]
Preview
Text
fcaa162.pdf - Published Version

Download (907kB) | Preview

Abstract

Variants in the GABRB3 gene encoding the β3-subunit of the γ-aminobutyric acid type A ( receptor are associated with various developmental and epileptic encephalopathies. Typically, these variants cause a loss-of-function molecular phenotype whereby γ-aminobutyric acid has reduced inhibitory effectiveness leading to seizures. Drugs that potentiate inhibitory GABAergic activity, such as nitrazepam, phenobarbital or vigabatrin, are expected to compensate for this and thereby reduce seizure frequency. However, vigabatrin, a drug that inhibits γ-aminobutyric acid transaminase to increase tonic γ-aminobutyric acid currents, has mixed success in treating seizures in patients with GABRB3 variants: some patients experience seizure cessation, but there is hypersensitivity in some patients associated with hypotonia, sedation and respiratory suppression. A GABRB3 variant that responds well to vigabatrin involves a truncation variant (p.Arg194*) resulting in a clear loss-of-function. We hypothesized that patients with a hypersensitive response to vigabatrin may exhibit a different γ-aminobutyric acid A receptor phenotype. To test this hypothesis, we evaluated the phenotype of de novo variants in GABRB3 (p.Glu77Lys and p.Thr287Ile) associated with patients who are clinically hypersensitive to vigabatrin. We introduced the GABRB3 p.Glu77Lys and p.Thr287Ile variants into a concatenated synaptic and extrasynaptic γ-aminobutyric acid A receptor construct, to resemble the γ-aminobutyric acid A receptor expression by a patient heterozygous for the GABRB3 variant. The mRNA of these constructs was injected into Xenopus oocytes and activation properties of each receptor measured by two-electrode voltage clamp electrophysiology. Results showed an atypical gain-of-function molecular phenotype in the GABRB3 p.Glu77Lys and p.Thr287Ile variants characterized by increased potency of γ-aminobutyric acid A without change to the estimated maximum open channel probability, deactivation kinetics or absolute currents. Modelling of the activation properties of the receptors indicated that either variant caused increased chloride flux in response to low concentrations of γ-aminobutyric acid that mediate tonic currents. We therefore propose that the hypersensitivity reaction to vigabatrin is a result of GABRB3 variants that exacerbate GABAergic tonic currents and caution is required when prescribing vigabatrin. In contrast, drug strategies increasing tonic currents in loss-of-function variants are likely to be a safe and effective therapy. This study demonstrates that functional genomics can explain beneficial and adverse anti-epileptic drug effects, and propose that vigabatrin should be considered in patients with clear loss-of-function GABRB3 variants.

Type: Article
Title: Gain-of-function GABRB3 variants identified in vigabatrin-hypersensitive epileptic encephalopathies
Location: England
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1093/braincomms/fcaa162
Publisher version: https://doi.org/10.1093/braincomms/fcaa162
Language: English
Additional information: Copyright © The Author(s) (2020). Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Guarantors of Brain. This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/), which permits non-commercial re-use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. For commercial re-use, please contact journals.permissions@oup.com
Keywords: developmental and epileptic encephalopathies, GABAA receptor, gain-of-function variants, vigabatrin, benzodiazepines
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Population Health Sciences > UCL GOS Institute of Child Health
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Population Health Sciences > UCL GOS Institute of Child Health > Developmental Neurosciences Dept
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10122883
Downloads since deposit
49Downloads
Download activity - last month
Download activity - last 12 months
Downloads by country - last 12 months

Archive Staff Only

View Item View Item