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DOI: 10.1186/s13578-019-0303-1; PMCID: PMC6518688


Background: Congenital chloride diarrhea (CCD) in a newborn is a rare autosomal recessive disorder with life-threatening complications, requiring early diagnostics and treatment to prevent severe dehydration and infant mortality. SLC26A3 rs386833481 (c.392C>G; p.P131R) gene polymorphism is an important genetic determinant of CCD. Here, we report the influence of the non-synonymous SLC26A3 variant rs386833481 gene polymorphism on the function of the epithelial barrier and the potential mechanisms of these effects.

Results: We found that P131R-SLC26A3 increased dysfunction of the epithelial barrier compared with wild type SLC26A3 in human colonic Caco-2 and mouse colonic CMT-93 cells. When P131R-SLC26A3 was subsequently reverted to wild type, the epithelial barrier function was restored similar to wild type cells. Further study demonstrated that variant P131R-SLC26A3 disrupts function of epithelial barrier through two distinct molecular mechanisms: (a) decreasing SLC26A3 expression through a ubiquitination pathway and (b) disrupting a key interaction with its partner ZO-1/CFTR, thereby increasing the epithelial permeability.

Conclusion: Our study provides an important insight of SLC26A3 SNPs in the regulation of the epithelial permeability and indicates that SLC26A3 rs386833481 is likely a causative mutation in the dysfunction of epithelial barrier of CCD, and correction of this SNP or increasing SLC26A3 function could be therapeutically beneficial for chronic diarrhea diseases.

Journal Title

Cell Biosci



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Chloride transport; Epithelial cell; Inflammation; Intestinal epithelium; Single-nucleotide polymorphism (SNP)


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