BACKGROUND: Spontaneous coronary artery dissection (SCAD) is an uncommon idiopathic disorder predominantly affecting young, otherwise healthy women. Rare familial cases reveal a genetic predisposition to disease. The aim of this study was to identify a novel susceptibility gene for SCAD. METHODS: Whole-exome sequencing was performed in a family comprised of 3 affected individuals and filtered to identify rare, predicted deleterious, segregating variants. Immunohistochemical staining was used to evaluate protein expression of the identified candidate gene. The prevalence and spectrum of rare (<0.1%) variants within binding domains was determined by next-generation sequencing or denaturing high-performance liquid chromatography in a sporadic SCAD cohort of 675 unrelated individuals. RESULTS: We identified a rare heterozygous missense variant within a highly conserved β-integrin-binding domain of TLN1 segregating with familial SCAD. TLN1 encodes talin 1-a large cytoplasmic protein of the integrin adhesion complex that links the actin cytoskeleton and extracellular matrix. Consistent with high mRNA expression in arterial tissues, robust immunohistochemical staining of talin 1 was demonstrated in coronary arteries. Nine additional rare heterozygous missense variants in TLN1 were identified in 10 sporadic cases. Incomplete penetrance, suggesting genetic or environmental modifiers of this episodic disorder, was evident in the familial case and 5 individuals with sporadic SCAD from whom parental DNA was available. CONCLUSIONS: Our findings reveal TLN1 as a disease-associated gene in familial and sporadic SCAD and, together with abnormal vascular phenotypes reported in animal models of talin 1 disruption, implicate impaired structural integrity of the coronary artery cytoskeleton in SCAD susceptibility.
- cohort studies
- coronary artery disease
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine