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Eur J Hum Genet. 2000 Mar;8(3):229-35.

Prenatal detection of a 17p11.2 duplication resulting from a rare recombination event and novel PCR-based strategy for molecular identification of Charcot-Marie-Tooth disease type 1A.

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  • 1Departement de Génétique Médicale, Hôpital d'enfants de la Timone, Marseille, France.


Charcot-Marie-Tooth disease, type 1A (CMT1A) is caused in most cases by a 1.5 Mb duplication on chromosome 17p11.2 arising after unequal crossing-over between repeated sequences called CMT1A-REPs, flanking the 1.5 Mb unit. A 3.2 kb recombination hot spot has been defined, resulting in a junction fragment between EcoRI (distal CMT1A-REP) and SacI (proximal CMT1A-REP). This was further reduced to a 1.7kb EcoRI-NsiI fragment, and recently to a 731 bp hot spot region within this fragment. We describe the CMT1A-REPs-based PCR method used to identify CMT1A duplications and report on a family case in which a 29-year-old pregnant woman requested prenatal diagnosis for two successive pregnancies because her husband was affected with CMT1A. Our method enabled us to characterise the duplication in both foetuses and demonstrate that it arose from a rare recombination event taking place outside the 1.7 kb region. Since our approach is simple and enables the entire set of duplications occurring after recombination in the enlarged 3.2kb region including the hot spot to be detected, we suggest it might be considered for use in primary screening for pre- and postnatal diagnosis of CMT1A.

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