Erythrocytosis can arise from deregulation of the erythropoietin (Epo) axis resulting from defects in the oxygen-sensing pathway. Epo synthesis is controlled by the hypoxia inducible factor (HIF) complex, composed of an a and a ß subunit. There are 2 main a subunits, HIF-1a and HIF-2a. Recently, a HIF-2a Gly537Trp mutation was identified in a family with erythrocytosis. This raises the possibility of HIF2A mutations being associated with other cases of erythrocytosis. We now report a subsequent analysis of HIF2A in a cohort of 75 erythrocytosis patients and identify 4 additional patients with novel heterozygous Met535Val and Gly537Arg mutations. All patients presented at a young age with elevated serum Epo. Mutations at Gly-537 account for 4 of 5 HIF2A mutations associated with erythrocytosis. These findings support the importance of HIF-2a in human Epo regulation and warrant investigation of HIF2A in patients with unexplained erythrocytosis.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cell Biology