Familial dysautonomia (FD), a hereditary sensory and autonomic neuropathy, is caused by missplicing of exon 20, resulting from an intronic mutation in the inhibitor of kappa light polypeptide gene enhancer in B cells, kinase complex-associated protein (IKBKAP) gene encoding IKK complex-associated protein (IKAP)/elongator protein 1 (ELP1). A newly established splicing reporter assay allowed us to visualize pathogenic splicing in cells and to screen small chemicals for the ability to correct the aberrant splicing of IKBKAP. Using this splicing reporter, we screened our chemical libraries and identified a compound, rectifier of aberrant splicing (RECTAS), that rectifies the aberrant IKBKAP splicing in cells from patients with FD. Here, we found that the levels of modified uridine at the wobble position in cytoplasmic tRNAs are reduced in cells from patients with FD and that treatment with RECTAS increases the expression of IKAP and recovers the tRNA modifications. These findings suggest that the missplicing of IKBKAP results in reduced tRNA modifications in patients with FD and that RECTAS is a promising therapeutic drug candidate for FD.
|Number of pages||6|
|Journal||Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America|
|Publication status||Published - Mar 3 2015|
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