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Clin Diagn Lab Immunol. 1999 Nov;6(6):906-11.

Longitudinal analysis of lymphocyte function and numbers in the first year of life in chromosome 22q11.2 deletion syndrome (DiGeorge syndrome/velocardiofacial syndrome).

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Department of Pediatrics, The Children's Hospital of Philadelphia, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 19104, USA.


Chromosome 22q11.2 deletion syndrome is a common syndrome typically consisting of variable cardiac defects, hypoparathyroidism, developmental delay, and immunodeficiency. The hemizygous deletion has variable effects on the immune system even within the same kindred, and the extent of the immunodeficiency is difficult to predict. Some patients have shown improvement over time; however, this is the first prospective longitudinal study of the dynamic nature of the immunodeficiency. Nineteen patients were studied prospectively between 1994 and 1997. The results of the newborn immunologic studies in the chromosome 22q11.2 deletion group were significantly different from those of a group of newborns with cardiac disease due to other causes. Peripheral blood T-cell numbers were decreased in the chromosome 22q11.2 deletion group, although T-cell function was largely preserved. The group as a whole demonstrated few changes in the first year of life, but a subset of patients with markedly diminished T-cell numbers did demonstrate improvement. Therefore, improvement in peripheral blood T-cell counts is variable in chromosome 22q11.2 deletion syndrome. The patients with the lowest T-cell counts improved the most in the first year of life.

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