Mummified remains of relevant historical figures are nowadays an important source of information to retrace data concerning their private life and health, especially when historical archives are not available. Next-generation-sequencing was proved to be a valuable tool to unravel the characteristics of these individuals through their genetic heritage. Using the strictest criteria currently available for the validation of ancient DNA sequences, whole-genome and whole-exome sequencing were generated from the mummy remains of an Italian nobleman died almost 700 years ago, Cangrande della Scala. While its genome sequencing could not yield sufficient coverage for in depth investigation, exome sequencing could overcome the limitations of this approach to achieve significantly high coverage on coding regions, thus allowing to perform the first extensive exome analysis of a mummy genome. Similar to a standard "clinical exome analysis" conducted on modern DNA, an in-depth variant annotation, high-quality filtering and interpretation was performed, leading to the identification of a genotype associated with late-onset Pompe disease (glycogen storage disease type II). This genetic diagnosis was concordant with the limited clinical history available for Cangrande della Scala, who likely represents the earliest known case of this autosomal recessive metabolic disorder.

Whole-exome sequencing of the mummified remains of Cangrande della Scala (1291{ extendash}1329 {CE}) indicates the first known case of late-onset Pompe disease

Barbara Iadarola;Denise Lavezzari;Chiara Degli Esposti;Cristina Beltrami;Marzia Rossato;Alessandro Salviati;Massimo Delledonne
2021

Abstract

Mummified remains of relevant historical figures are nowadays an important source of information to retrace data concerning their private life and health, especially when historical archives are not available. Next-generation-sequencing was proved to be a valuable tool to unravel the characteristics of these individuals through their genetic heritage. Using the strictest criteria currently available for the validation of ancient DNA sequences, whole-genome and whole-exome sequencing were generated from the mummy remains of an Italian nobleman died almost 700 years ago, Cangrande della Scala. While its genome sequencing could not yield sufficient coverage for in depth investigation, exome sequencing could overcome the limitations of this approach to achieve significantly high coverage on coding regions, thus allowing to perform the first extensive exome analysis of a mummy genome. Similar to a standard "clinical exome analysis" conducted on modern DNA, an in-depth variant annotation, high-quality filtering and interpretation was performed, leading to the identification of a genotype associated with late-onset Pompe disease (glycogen storage disease type II). This genetic diagnosis was concordant with the limited clinical history available for Cangrande della Scala, who likely represents the earliest known case of this autosomal recessive metabolic disorder.
Glycogen Storage Disease Type II
History, Medieval
Humans
Male
DNA, Ancient
Mummies
Whole Exome Sequencing
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11562/1057466
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