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Am J Hum Genet. Oct 1991; 49(4): 855–859.
PMCID: PMC1683177

High frequency of the Gaucher disease mutation at nucleotide 1226 among Ashkenazi Jews.


Reliable estimates of the frequency of Gaucher disease-producing mutations are not available. The high frequency of Gaucher disease in the Ashkenazi Jewish population is due to the occurrence of a mutation at nucleotide (nt) 1226. We have screened 593 DNA samples from normal Ashkenazi Jews, as well as 62 DNA samples from all our Ashkenazi Jewish patients with Gaucher disease, for the presence of the 1226 mutation. In the 593 presumed normal Ashkenazi Jewish individuals the 1226 mutation was identified in the heterozygous state in 37 and in the homozygous state in two, giving a gene frequency of .035 for the mutation. This 1226 mutation represented 73% of the 124 Gaucher disease alleles in Jewish Gaucher disease patients. Accordingly we estimate that the gene frequency for Gaucher disease among the Ashkenazi Jewish population is .047, which is equivalent to a carrier frequency of 8.9% and a birth incidence of 1:450.

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