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Brain Pathol. 1999 Apr;9(2):327-41.

Inherited neuropathies: from gene to disease.

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  • 1Department of Pediatrics, University of Washington School of Medicine, Seattle, USA.


Inherited disorders of peripheral nerves represent a common group of neurologic diseases. Charcot-Marie-Tooth neuropathy type 1 (CMT1) is a genetically heterogeneous group of chronic demyelinating polyneuropathies with loci mapping to chromosome 17 (CMT1A), chromosome 1 (CMT1B) and to another unknown autosome (CMT1C). CMT1A is most often associated with a tandem 1.5-megabase (Mb) duplication in chromosome 17p11.2-12, or in rare patients may result from a point mutation in the peripheral myelin protein-22 (PMP22) gene. CMT1B is associated with point mutations in the myelin protein zero (P0 or MPZ) gene. The molecular defect in CMT1C is unknown. X-linked Charcot-Marie-Tooth neuropathy (CMTX), which has clinical features similar to CMT1, is associated with mutations in the connexin32 gene. Charcot-Marie-Tooth neuropathy type 2 (CMT2) is an axonal neuropathy, also of undetermined cause. One form of CMT2 maps to chromosome 1p36 (CMT2A), another to chromosome 3p (CMT2B) and another to 7p (CMT2D). Dejerine-Sottas disease (DSD), also called hereditary motor and sensory neuropathy type III (HMSNIII), is a severe, infantile-onset demyelinating polyneuropathy syndrome that may be associated with point mutations in either the PMP22 gene or the P0 gene and shares considerable clinical and pathological features with CMT1. Hereditary neuropathy with liability to pressure palsies (HNPP) is an autosomal dominant disorder that results in a recurrent, episodic demyelinating neuropathy. HNPP is associated with a 1.5-Mb deletion in chromosome 17p11.2-12 and results from reduced expression of the PMP22 gene. CMT1A and HNPP are reciprocal duplication/deletion syndromes originating from unequal crossover during germ cell meiosis. Other rare forms of demyelinating peripheral neuropathies map to chromosome 8q, 10q and 11q. Hereditary neuralgic amyotrophy (familial brachial plexus neuropathy) is an autosomal dominant disorder causing painful, recurrent brachial plexopathies and maps to chromosome 17q25.

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