PLXNA3 Variant rs5945430 is Associated with Severe Clinical Course in Male Multiple Sclerosis Patients

Moaz Qureshi, Mohamed Hatem, Raed Alroughani, Sindhu Jacob, Rabeah Abbas Al-Temaimi

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3 Citations (Scopus)


Multiple sclerosis (MS) exhibits sex bias in disease clinical course as male MS patients develop severe, progressive clinical course with accumulating disability. So far, no factors have been found associating with this sex bias in MS severity. We set out to determine the genetic factor contributing to MS male-specific progressive disease. This is an MS cross-sectional study involving 213 Kuwaiti MS patients recruited at Dasman Diabetes Institute. Exome sequencing was performed on 18 females and 8 male MS patients’ genomic DNA. rs5945430 genotyping was performed using Taqman genotyping assay. Estradiol levels were determined by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay. Exome analysis revealed a missense variant (rs5945430) in Plexin A3 (PLXNA3) gene (Xq28) associated with male-specific MS severity. Genotyping of 187 MS patients for rs5945430 confirmed the association of rs5945430G with increased disease severity in MS males (p = 0.013; OR 3.8; 95% CI 1.24–11.7) and disability (p = 0.024). Estradiol levels shown to effect PLXNA3 expression were lower in MS males compared to MS females, and they were lower than control rs5945430G males (p = 0.057), whereas MS females had similar estradiol levels to healthy females reducing the level of expressed PLXNA3 GG in MS females. PLXNA3 rs5945430G is associated with increased disease severity in MS male patients. Estradiol is a possible protective factor against the expression of rs5945430G in MS females.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)286-292
Number of pages7
JournalNeuroMolecular Medicine
Issue number2-3
Publication statusPublished - 1 Sep 2017


  • Estradiol
  • Exome analysis
  • Multiple sclerosis
  • Plexin A3
  • Sex bias


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