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Drosophila models of PIGA-CDG mirror patient phenotypes

Mutations in the phosphatidylinositol glycan biosynthesis class A (PIGA) gene cause a rare, X-linked recessive congenital disorder of glycosylation (CDG). PIGA-CDG is characterized by seizures, intellectual and developmental delay, and congenital malformations. The PIGA gene encodes an enzyme involved in the first step of GPI anchor biosynthesis. There are over 100 GPI anchored proteins that attach to the cell surface and are involved in cell signaling, immunity, and adhesion. Little is known about the pathophysiology of PIGA-CDG. Here we describe the first Drosophila model of PIGA-CDG and demonstrate that loss of PIG-A function in Drosophila accurately models the human disease.