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To determine the molecular basis for type I hyperlipoproteinemia in two Austrian families, the lipoprotein lipase (LPL) gene of two patients exhibiting LPL deficiency was analyzed by Southern blotting and by direct genomic sequencing of DNA amplified by polymerase chain reaction (PCR). All exons of the LPL gene except part of the noncoding region of exon 10, all splice donor and acceptor sites, as well as 430 basepairs of the 5'-region including the promotor were sequenced. A homozygous substitution of adenine for guanine in the fifth exon at cDNA position 818 of the LPL gene was found in both patients. Our sequencing strategy largely ruled out a linkage disequilibrium of the identified nucleotide change with another defect potentially causing the clinical phenotype. The base change described abolishes a normally present AvaII restriction site allowing the identification of carriers of the mutant allele by AvaII digestion of PCR fragments of exon 5; three members of the two families were homozygous for this mutation and ten members were heterozygous. The activity of LPL in postheparin plasma was almost completely absent in homozygotes and about half normal in heterozygotes. The loss of activity was related to LPL protein structure. This mutation alters the amino acid sequence at residue 188 from Gly to Glu. The conformational preferences of the protein chain around position 188 were calculated with the use of a knowledge-based computerized method. The most probable conformation is a beta-turn formed by residues 189-192. The mutation seems to destabilize the beta-turn and/or a yet larger domain critical for substrate alignment.

Original publication




Journal article



Publication Date





239 - 250


Adult, Base Sequence, Blotting, Southern, DNA, Humans, Hyperlipoproteinemia Type I, Lipids, Lipoprotein Lipase, Male, Molecular Conformation, Molecular Sequence Data, Pedigree, Polymerase Chain Reaction