CUL3 forms Cullin-Ring ubiquitin ligases (CRL) with Ring-box protein and BTB-adaptor proteins. A variety of BTB-adaptor proteins have been reported to interact with the N-terminus of CUL3, which makes it possible to recognize various substrates for degradation. Regarding the association of CUL3 with neurodevelopmental disorders, a recent study reported three patients with global developmental delay, who carried de novo variants in CUL3. Here, we describe a novel de novo CUL3 variant (c.158G > A, p.Ser53Asn) identified in a patient with global developmental delay, who presented some novel dysmorphic features, including macrocephaly, characteristic facial features, and cutis marmorata. Immunoprecipitation and immunoblot analyses identified significantly weaker binding ability to some BTB proteins in CUL3-S53N compared to wild-type. Interestingly, label-free quantification proteomics analysis of samples immunoprecipitated by CUL3-S53N showed a significantly decreased interaction with some BTB proteins, while almost equal interaction or significantly increased interaction was observed with other BTB proteins. The binding between CUL3 and BTB proteins is essential for CRL substrate recognition, and alteration of their interaction is thought to result in the quantitative alteration in substrate proteins. It is possible that the difference of dysmorphic features between the present case and previously reported cases is caused by the distinctive effect of each CUL3 variant on substrate proteins. The clinical information of the present case will expand the picture of CUL3-related global developmental disorders, and subsequent cell biological analysis of the novel mutation will provide insight into the underlying molecular mechanism of how CUL3 pathogenic variants cause neurological disorders.
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