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Mol Syndromol. 2012 Apr;2(3-5):164-170. Epub 2012 Apr 16.

The MEF2C-Related and 5q14.3q15 Microdeletion Syndrome.

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  • 1Institute of Human Genetics, Friedrich-Alexander University of Erlangen-Nuremberg, Erlangen, Germany.

Abstract

Disorders related to the autosomal transcription factor MEF2C located in 5q14.3 were first described in 2009 and have since evolved to one of the more common microdeletion syndromes. Mutational screening in a larger cohort revealed heterozygous de novo mutations of MEF2C in about 1% of patients with moderate to severe intellectual disability, and the phenotype is similar in patients with intragenic deletions and multigenic microdeletions. Clinically, MEF2C-related disorders are characterized by severe intellectual disability with absent speech and limited walking abilities, hypotonia, seizures, and a variety of minor brain anomalies. The majority of patients show a similar facial gestalt with broad forehead, flat nasal bridge, hypotonic mouth, and small chin, as well as strabismus, but this phenotype is clinically not well recognized. The course of the disease is generally quite uniform, but patients with point mutations and smaller deletions seem to have a higher chance of walking skills and a lower risk of refractory seizures. Patients in whom the microdeletion also includes the RASA1 gene show features of the respective capillary and arterio-venous malformations and fistula syndrome. The phenotypic overlap with Rett syndrome is explained by a shared pathway and, accordingly, diminished MECP2 and CDKL5 expression is measureable in patients with MEF2C defects. Further research of this pathway may therefore eventually lead to a common therapeutic target.

PMID:
22670137
[PubMed]
PMCID:
PMC3366707
Free PMC Article
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