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Open AccessArticle

Novel Polymorphisms and Genetic Features of the Prion Protein Gene (PRNP) in Cats, Hosts of Feline Spongiform Encephalopathy

by 1,2,†, 1,2,†, 3, 4 and 1,2,*
1
Korea Zoonosis Research Institute, Jeonbuk National University, Iksan, Jeonbuk 54531, Korea
2
Department of Bioactive Material Sciences and Institute for Molecular Biology and Genetics, Jeonbuk National University, Jeonju, Jeonbuk 54896, Korea
3
Haemalken Animal Hospital, Yangju, Gyeonggi 11492, Korea
4
Cool-Pet Animal Hospital, Anyang, Gyeonggi 14066, Korea
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
These authors contributed equally to this work.
Genes 2021, 12(1), 13; https://doi.org/10.3390/genes12010013
Received: 26 November 2020 / Revised: 21 December 2020 / Accepted: 22 December 2020 / Published: 24 December 2020
(This article belongs to the Section Animal Genetics and Genomics)
Prion diseases are fatal neurodegenerative disorders characterized by vacuolation and gliosis in the brain. Prion diseases have been reported in several mammals, and genetic polymorphisms of the prion protein gene (PRNP) play an essential role in the vulnerability of prion diseases. However, to date, investigations of PRNP polymorphisms are rare in cats, which are the major host of feline spongiform encephalopathy (FSE). Thus, we investigated the genetic polymorphisms of the cat PRNP gene and analyzed the structural characteristics of the PrP of cats compared to those of dog, prion disease-resistant animal. To investigate the genetic variations of the cat PRNP gene in 208 cats, we performed amplicon sequencing and examined the genotype, allele and haplotype frequencies of cat PRNP polymorphisms. We evaluated the influence of cat PRNP polymorphisms using PolyPhen-2, PANTHER, PROVEAN and AMYCO. In addition, we carried out structural analysis of cat PrP according to the allele of nonsynonymous single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) (c.457G > A, Glu153Lys) using Swiss-PdbViewer. Finally, we compared the structural differences between cat and canine PrPs for SNPs associated with prion disease resistance in dogs. We identified a total of 15 polymorphisms, including 14 novel SNPs and one insertion/deletion polymorphism (InDel). Among them, Glu153Lys was predicted to affect the structural stability and amyloid propensity of cat PrP. In addition, asparagine at codon 166 of cat PrP was predicted to have longer hydrogen bond than aspartic acid at codon 163 of canine PrP. Furthermore, substitution to dog-specific amino acids in cat PrP showed an increase in structural stability. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first study regarding the structural characteristics of cat PRNP gene. View Full-Text
Keywords: feline spongiform encephalopathy; FSE; prion diseases; cat; dog; prion protein gene (PRNP); single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) feline spongiform encephalopathy; FSE; prion diseases; cat; dog; prion protein gene (PRNP); single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP)
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MDPI and ACS Style

Kim, H.-H.; Kim, Y.-C.; Kim, K.; Kim, A.-D.; Jeong, B.-H. Novel Polymorphisms and Genetic Features of the Prion Protein Gene (PRNP) in Cats, Hosts of Feline Spongiform Encephalopathy. Genes 2021, 12, 13. https://doi.org/10.3390/genes12010013

AMA Style

Kim H-H, Kim Y-C, Kim K, Kim A-D, Jeong B-H. Novel Polymorphisms and Genetic Features of the Prion Protein Gene (PRNP) in Cats, Hosts of Feline Spongiform Encephalopathy. Genes. 2021; 12(1):13. https://doi.org/10.3390/genes12010013

Chicago/Turabian Style

Kim, Hyeon-Ho; Kim, Yong-Chan; Kim, Kiwon; Kim, An-Dang; Jeong, Byung-Hoon. 2021. "Novel Polymorphisms and Genetic Features of the Prion Protein Gene (PRNP) in Cats, Hosts of Feline Spongiform Encephalopathy" Genes 12, no. 1: 13. https://doi.org/10.3390/genes12010013

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