Dystonia is a disabling disease that manifests as prolonged involuntary twisting movements. DYT-THAP1 is an inherited form of isolated dystonia caused by mutations in THAP1 encoding the transcription factor THAP1. The phe81leu (F81L) missense mutation is representative of a category of poorly understood mutations that do not occur on residues critical for DNA binding. Here, we demonstrate that the F81L mutation (THAP1F81L) impairs THAP1 transcriptional activity and disrupts CNS myelination. Strikingly, THAP1F81L exhibits normal DNA binding but causes a significantly reduced DNA binding of YY1, its transcriptional partner that also has an established role in oligodendrocyte lineage progression. Our results suggest a model of molecular pathogenesis whereby THAP1F81L normally binds DNA but is unable to efficiently organize an active transcription complex.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Molecular Biology