Objective: Mutations in the cardiac sodium channel gene, SCN5A, cause congenital long QT syndrome (LQT3), Brugada syndrome, idiopathic ventricular fibrillation, and conduction disease by distinct cellular and clinical electrophysiological phenotypes. Methods: Postmortem molecular analysis of SCN5A was conducted on an infant who presented shortly after birth with self-terminating torsades de pointes. The infant was treated with lidocaine, propranolol, and mexiletine and was stable for 16 months manifesting only a prolonged QT interval. The infant collapsed suddenly following presumed viral gastroenteritis, was found in 2:1 AV block, and was subsequently declared brain dead. Genomic DNA was subjected to SCN5A mutational analyses and DNA sequencing revealing a novel, spontaneous germline missense mutation, M1766L. The M1766L mutation was engineered into the hH1a clone by site-directed mutagenesis, transfected into embryonic kidney cells (HEK-293), and studied by voltage clamp. Results: The M1766L mutation caused a significant decrease in the sodium channel expression. Co-expression with β1 subunit, incubation at low temperature, and most effectively incubation with mexiletine partially 'rescued' the defective expression. In addition to this pronounced loss of function, M1766L also showed a 10-fold increase in the persistent late sodium current. Conclusions: These findings suggest that M1766L-SCN5A channel dysfunction may contribute to the basis of lethal arrhythmias, displays an overlapping electrophysiological phenotype, and represents the first sodium channelopathy rescued by drug.
- Long QT syndrome
- Sudden death
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine
- Physiology (medical)