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3. MEDICAL AND HEALTH SCIENCES, Human genetics
The aim was to determine disease-causing variants in the GALT gene which codes for the enzyme galactose-1-phosphate uridylyltransferase. Loss of activity of this enzyme causes classical galactosemia-a life threatening, treatable disorder, included in the Swedish newborn screening program since 1967. A total of 66 patients with the disease are known in Sweden and 56 index patients were investigated. An additional two patients with Duarte galactosemia were included. The disease-causing variants were identified in all patients. As reported from other countries only a few variants frequently recur in severe disease. The two variants p.(Gln188Arg) (c.563A>G) and p.(Met142Lys) (c.425T>A) are present in several index patients whereas the remaining are found in one to three patients each. The most common variant, p.(Gln188Arg), has an allele frequency of 51% in the cohort. A total of 16 novel variants were found among the 33 different variants in the cohort. Two of these are synonymous variants affecting splicing, demonstrating the importance of the evaluation of synonymous variants at the cDNA level. Concise sentence: Galactosemia is a rare disease in Sweden and the disease-causing variants are heterogenous including two synonymous variants.
Ohlsson A, Hunt M, Wedell A, von Döbeln U. Heterogeneity of disease-causing variants in the Swedish galactosemia population: Identification of 16 novel GALT variants. J Inherit Metab Dis. 2019 Sep;42(5):1008-1018. doi: 10.1002/jimd.12136. Epub 2019 Aug 12. PMID: 31194895.
Stockholm County Council; Karolinska Institute Research Foundation