Background: Store-operated Ca2+ entry (SOCE) through Ca2+ release–activated Ca2+ channels is an essential signaling pathway in many cell types. Ca2+ release–activated Ca2+ channels are formed by ORAI1, ORAI2, and ORAI3 proteins and activated by stromal interaction molecule (STIM) 1 and STIM2. Mutations in the ORAI1 and STIM1 genes that abolish SOCE cause a combined immunodeficiency (CID) syndrome that is accompanied by autoimmunity and nonimmunologic symptoms. Objective: We performed molecular and immunologic analysis of patients with CID, anhidrosis, and ectodermal dysplasia of unknown etiology. Methods: We performed DNA sequencing of the ORAI1 gene, modeling of mutations on ORAI1 crystal structure, analysis of ORAI1 mRNA and protein expression, SOCE measurements, immunologic analysis of peripheral blood lymphocyte populations by using flow cytometry, and histologic and ultrastructural analysis of patient tissues. Results: We identified 3 novel autosomal recessive mutations in ORAI1 in unrelated kindreds with CID, autoimmunity, ectodermal dysplasia with anhidrosis, and muscular dysplasia. The patients were homozygous for p.V181SfsX8, p.L194P, and p.G98R mutations in the ORAI1 gene that suppressed ORAI1 protein expression and SOCE in the patients’ lymphocytes and fibroblasts. In addition to impaired T-cell cytokine production, ORAI1 mutations were associated with strongly reduced numbers of invariant natural killer T and regulatory T (Treg) cells and altered composition of γδ T-cell and natural killer cell subsets. Conclusion: ORAI1 null mutations are associated with reduced numbers of invariant natural killer T and Treg cells that likely contribute to the patients’ immunodeficiency and autoimmunity. ORAI1-deficient patients have dental enamel defects and anhidrosis, representing a new form of anhidrotic ectodermal dysplasia with immunodeficiency that is distinct from previously reported patients with anhidrotic ectodermal dysplasia with immunodeficiency caused by mutations in the nuclear factor κB signaling pathway (IKBKG and NFKBIA).
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Immunology and Allergy