Nuclear lamina genetic variants, including a truncated LAP2, in twins and siblings with nonalcoholic fatty liver disease

Graham F. Brady, Raymond Kwan, Peter J. Ulintz, Phirum Nguyen, Shirin Bassirian, Venkatesha Basrur, Alexey I. Nesvizhskii, Rohit Loomba, Bishr Omary

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

16 Citations (Scopus)


Nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) is becoming the major chronic liver disease in many countries. Its pathogenesis is multifactorial, but twin and familial studies indicate significant heritability, which is not fully explained by currently known genetic susceptibility loci. Notably, mutations in genes encoding nuclear lamina proteins, including lamins, cause lipodystrophy syndromes that include NAFLD. We hypothesized that variants in lamina-associated proteins predispose to NAFLD and used a candidate gene-sequencing approach to test for variants in 10 nuclear lamina-related genes in a cohort of 37 twin and sibling pairs: 21 individuals with and 53 without NAFLD. Twelve heterozygous sequence variants were identified in four lamina-related genes (ZMPSTE24, TMPO, SREBF1, SREBF2). The majority of NAFLD patients (>90%) had at least one variant compared to <40% of controls (P < 0.0001). When only insertions/deletions and changes in conserved residues were considered, the difference between the groups was similarly striking (>80% versus <25%; P < 0.0001). Presence of a lamina variant segregated with NAFLD independently of the PNPLA3 I148M polymorphism. Several variants were found in TMPO, which encodes the lamina-associated polypeptide-2 (LAP2) that has not been associated with liver disease. One of these, a frameshift insertion that generates truncated LAP2, abrogated lamin-LAP2 binding, caused LAP2 mislocalization, altered endogenous lamin distribution, increased lipid droplet accumulation after oleic acid treatment in transfected cells, and led to cytoplasmic association with the ubiquitin-binding protein p62/SQSTM1. Conclusion: Several variants in nuclear lamina-related genes were identified in a cohort of twins and siblings with NAFLD; one such variant, which results in a truncated LAP2 protein and a dramatic phenotype in cell culture, represents an association of TMPO/LAP2 variants with NAFLD and underscores the potential importance of the nuclear lamina in NAFLD. (Hepatology 2018;67:1710-1725).
Original languageUndefined/Unknown
Pages (from-to)1710–1725
Number of pages16
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 2018
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed

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