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A single strand conformation polymorphism/heteroduplex (SSCP/HD) method for detection of mutations in 15 exons of the KVLQT1 gene, associated with long QT syndrome.

L A Larsen, P S Andersen, J K Kanters, J R Jacobsen, J Vuust, M Christiansen

Clin. Chim. Acta, 1999 Feb , 280, 113-25

Congenital long QT syndrome (LQTS) is characterised by prolongation of the QT interval on ECG and cardiac arrhythmias, syncopes and sudden death. A rapid and reliable genetic diagnosis of the disease may be of great importance for diagnosis and treatment of LQTS. Mutations in the KVLQT1 gene, encoding a potassium-channel subunit of importance for the depolarisation of cardiac myocytes, is believed to be associated with 50% of all LQTS cases. Our data confirms that KvLQT1 isoform 1 is encoded by 16 exons, and not 15, as reported previously. We have used genomic DNA sequences to design intronic PCR primers for amplification of 15 exons of KVLQT1 and optimised a non-radioactive single stranded conformation polymorphism/heteroduplex (SSCP/HD) method for detection of mutations in KVLQT1. The sensitivity of the method was 100% when it was tested on 15 in vitro constructed mutants. By multiplexing the PCR amplification of KVLQT1, it is possible to cover all 15 exons in four PCR reactions.