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      Altered triple helical structure of type I procollagen in lethal perinatal osteogenesis imperfecta.

      The Journal of Biological Chemistry

      Osteogenesis Imperfecta, Electrophoresis, Polyacrylamide Gel, Female, Fibroblasts, metabolism, Humans, Microbial Collagenase, Microscopy, Electron, Mutation, Cyanogen Bromide, genetics, Pepsin A, Peptide Fragments, Procollagen, Protein Conformation, RNA, Messenger

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          Cultured dermal fibroblasts from an infant with the lethal perinatal form of osteogenesis imperfecta (type II) synthesize normal and abnormal forms of type I procollagen. The abnormal type I procollagen molecules are excessively modified during their intracellular stay, have a lower than normal melting transition temperature, are secreted at a reduced rate, and form abnormally thin collagen fibrils in the extracellular matrix in vitro. Overmodification of the abnormal type I procollagen molecules was limited to the NH2-terminal three-fourths of the triple helical domain. Two-dimensional mapping of modified and unmodified alpha chains of type I collagen demonstrated neither charge alterations nor large insertions or deletions in the region of alpha 1(I) and alpha 2(I) in which overmodification begins. Both the structure and function of type I procollagen synthesized by cells from the parents of this infant were normal. The simplest interpretation of the results of this study is that the osteogenesis imperfecta phenotype arose from a new dominant mutation in one of the genes encoding the chains of type I procollagen. Given the requirement for glycine in every third position of the triple helical domain, the mutation may represent a single amino acid substitution for a glycine residue. These findings demonstrate further heterogeneity in the biochemical basis of osteogenesis imperfecta type II and suggest that the nature and location of mutations in type I procollagen may determine phenotypic variation.

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