The genetics-based study on hereditary spastic paraplegia (HSP) MYO1H is a novel candidate gene for autosomal dominant pure hereditary spastic paraplegia” was published in the journal Molecular Genetics and Genomics by Prof. Dr. Arzu Karabay Korkmaz and her lab members from ITU Molecular Biology and Genetics Department.

In this study, we aimed to determine the genetic basis of a Turkish family related to hereditary spastic paraplegia (HSP) by exome sequencing. HSP is a progressive neurodegenerative disorder and displays genetic and clinical heterogeneity. The major symptoms are muscle weakness and spasticity, especially in the lower extremities. We studied seven affected and seven unaffected family members, as well as a clinically undetermined member, to identify the disease-causing gene. Exome sequencing was performed for four affected and two unaffected individuals. The variants were firstly filtered for HSPassociated genes, and we found a common variant in the ZFYVE27 gene, which has been previously implied for association with HSP. Due to the incompletely penetrant segregation pattern of the ZFYVE27 variant, revealed by Sanger sequencing, with the disease in this family, filtering was re-performed according to the mode of inheritance and allelic frequencies. The resulting 14 rare variants were further evaluated in terms of their cellular functions, and three candidate variants in ATAD3C, VPS16, and MYO1H genes were selected as possible causative variants, which were analyzed for their familial segregation. ATAD3C and VPS16 variants were eliminated due to incomplete penetrance Eventually, the MYO1H variant NM_001101421.3:c.2972_2974del (p.Glu992del, rs372231088) was found as the possible disease-causing deletion for HSP in this family. This is the first study reporting the possible role of a MYO1H variant in HSP pathogenesis. Further studies on the cellular roles of Myo1h protein are needed to validate the causality of MYO1H gene at the onset of HSP.