Sequence variants in glucocerebrosidase (GBA) are a major genetic risk factor for Parkinson's disease (PD), and display ethnic-dependent frequencies, for example, variants such as p.N370S and 84insGG are common in Ashkenazi Jewish patients. Notably, there are limited studies on black patients from the African continent; hence, we conducted a study on 30 South African black PD patients. All 11 exons of GBA were screened using a nested PCR approach to avoid pseudogene contamination. We identified previously described Gaucher's disease–associated variants, p.R120W in one patient [age at onset (AAO) of 35 years], and p.R131L in another patient (AAO 30 years) and in her affected sibling (AAO 45 years). In addition, we found 3 previously identified [p.K(-27)R, p.T36del, and p.Q497*] and 2 novel (p.F216L and p.G478R) variants. Screening of ethnic-matched controls for the novel variants revealed that the allele frequency of p.F216L was 9.9%, whereas p.G478R was not found in the controls. Studies such as these are important and necessary to reveal the genetic architecture underlying PD in the understudied patients of African ancestry.
|Original language||English (US)|
|Journal||Neurobiology of aging|
|State||Accepted/In press - Jan 1 2020|