Intellectual disabilityGene: CTR9
Meuwissen, Verstraeten, Ranza et al (2022 - PMID: 35499524) describe the phenotype of 13 unrelated individuals harboring heterozygous - predominantly de novo - CTR9 missense variants.
Overlapping features included delayed speech and/or motor development (each in 9 cases) with the latter complicated by hypotonia or hyperlaxity in some cases. Balance or coordination problems were also reported in some. Variable degrees of ID ranging from mild to severe were observed in all individuals of relevant age except for 3 who however experienced impairment in other domains and/or learning difficulties (8/11 - 2 individuals were too young for evaluation). Few had evidence of regression. Other features included behavioral abnormalities (incl. ASD in 4), FTT/feeding problems (in 5), cardiovascular findings (in 4 - incl. infantile thoracic aortic aneurysm, VSD, pulm. valve stenosis, SVAS). The authors reported variable/nonspecific dysmorphic features.
WES revealed heterozygous CTR9 missense variants in all cases (NM_014633.5 as RefSeq). The variants occurred de novo in most (11/13) individuals with a one proband having inherited the variant from his affected parent. For one case, a single parental sample was available. Most SNVs were absent from gnomAD with the exception of c.1364A>G/p.Asn455Ser and c.2633G>A/p.Arg878Gln present once in the database (Z-score for CTR9: 4.3 / pLI : 1). The variants affected highly conserved residues with in silico predictions mostly in favor of a deleterious effect.
CTR9 encodes a subunit of the PAF1 complex (PAF1C) with the other subunits encoded by PAF1, LEO1, CDC73, RTF1 and WDR61/SKI8. The complex acts as a transcriptional regulator with CTR9 binding RNA polymerase II. The complex influences gene expression by promoting H2BK123 ubiquitylation, H3K4 and H3K36 methylation. In yeast, Paf1 and Ctr9 appear to mediate involvement of Paf1C in induction of mitophagy (several Refs provided).
In silico modeling: a group of N-terminal variants likely destabilize structure, another group possibly perturbs CTR9-PAF1 interactions and a 3rd class influences interactions with other subunits. p.Glu15Lys did not appear to influence protein stability.
Functional studies: H3K4/H3K36 methylation analysis, mitochondrial quality assessment and RNA-seq studies in fibroblasts did not provide conclusive evidence for downstream consequences of the variants (albeit a brain-specific effect - as demonstrated for other disorders – cannot be excluded).
Animal models: In zebrafish, the Paf1C complex has been shown to play a role in cardiac specification and heart morphogenesis with ctr9 mutants showing severe defects in morphogenesis of primitive heart tube (cited PMID: 21338598). This supports a role of the CTR9 variants in the cardiac abnormalities observed in 4 individuals. Although Paf1C zebrafish homologues are required for Notch-regulated transcription (cited PMID: 17721442), there was no supporting evidence from RNA-seq analyses performed by the authors. In Drosophila, Ctr9 has a key role at multiple stages of nervous system development in Drosophila (cited PMID: 27520958). In rat, Ctr9 is expressed in dopaminergic neurons, with its expression not restricted to the nucleus, regulating dopamine transporter activity (cited PMID: 26048990).
As commented, de novo CTR9 variants have been identified in indivdiduals with developmental disorders in larger cohorts, though without phenotypic details (DDD study - PMID:2815719, De Rubeis et al, 2014 - PMID: 25363760, Lelieveld et al PMID: 27479843) [ https://denovo-db.gs.washington.edu/denovo-db/QueryVariantServlet?searchBy=Gene&target=CTR9 ]
Two previous studies (Hanks et al, 2014 - PMID: 25099282, Martins et al 2018, PMID: 29292210) have identified individuals with pLoF variants [in almost all cases leading to skipping of ex9 e.g. NM_014633.4:c.958-9A>G or (RefSeq not provided) c.1194+2T>C, c.1194+3A>C, the single exception being c.106C>T/p.Q36*] in individuals and families with Wilms tumor after exclusion of other genetic causes. Analyses of tumor samples revealed in several of these cases either LOH (most commonly) or truncating variants as second hits. These individuals did not display neurodevelopmental phenotypes (despite detailed clinical information provided in the 2 studies). CTR9 is included in the gene panels for WT and Tumor predisposition - childhood onset with green rating. [In addition few individuals with hyperparathyroidism jaw tumor syndrome due to heterozygous variants in CDC73 - another subunit of the PAF1 complex - have been reported with WT].
Given these reports, commenting on the embryonic lethality of Ctr9 homozygous ko mice (MGI) and the observation of only missense variants in their cohort Meuwissen, Verstraeten, Ranza et al presume that a dominant-negative effect may apply for the variants they report.
Consider inclusion in the current panel with amber (variant effect/underlying mechanism unknown) or green rating (>3 individuals/families/variants, multiple reports, some supporting evidence from animal models).
Created: 5 May 2022, 3:42 p.m. | Last Modified: 5 May 2022, 3:42 p.m.
Panel Version: 3.1562
Mode of inheritance
MONOALLELIC, autosomal or pseudoautosomal, imprinted status unknown
Delayed speech and language development; Motor delay; Intellectual disability; Behavioral abnormality; Autistic behavior; Failure to thrive; Feeding difficulties; Abnormality of the cardiovascular system
Mode of pathogenicity
Loss-of-function variants (as defined in pop up message) DO NOT cause this phenotype - please provide details in the comments
gene: CTR9 was added gene: CTR9 was added to Intellectual disability. Sources: Literature Mode of inheritance for gene: CTR9 was set to BIALLELIC, autosomal or pseudoautosomal Publications for gene: CTR9 were set to 35499524; 2815719; 25363760; 27479843; 25099282; 29292210 Phenotypes for gene: CTR9 were set to Delayed speech and language development; Motor delay; Intellectual disability; Behavioral abnormality; Autistic behavior; Failure to thrive; Feeding difficulties; Abnormality of the cardiovascular system Penetrance for gene: CTR9 were set to unknown Mode of pathogenicity for gene: CTR9 was set to Loss-of-function variants (as defined in pop up message) DO NOT cause this phenotype - please provide details in the comments Review for gene: CTR9 was set to AMBER