More than 100 variants have been identified in the TUBB8 gene, which account for approximately 30% of infertile women with oocyte maturation defects. But what is the correlation between the highly phenotypic diversity and genetic variability? Are there other variants in TUBB8 related to female infertility?
TUBB8 resequencing was performed in 80 female subjects who were experiencing infertility and were seeking treatment with assisted reproductive technologies (ART), or had ever experienced ART failure due to oocyte maturation defects. All variants were evaluated with pedigree analysis, population frequency, in-silico analysis and molecular modelling. The effects of the variants on oocytes/arrested embryos were assessed by morphological observations, immunostaining, embryo biopsies and chromosome euploidy analysis.
Nine missense variants and two frameshift variants from an additional 15 families were identified, including four novel variants and seven previously reported recurrent variants. These TUBB8 variants were related to highly variable phenotypes, including abnormalities in oocyte maturation or morphology, fertilization failure, embryonic development abnormalities and implantation failure. Also further clarified were the incomplete penetrance of heterozygous p.E108K, the likely benign significance of heterozygous p.A313V and the clinical effect of a novel variant of p.R380C.
This study significantly expands the variant spectrum of the TUBB8 gene and, together with the available findings on TUBB8 variants and female infertility, will potentially facilitate the genetic counselling of infertile women in future.

Copyright © 2022. Published by Elsevier Ltd.