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Am J Med Genet. 1999 Sep 24;89(3):137-46.

Jervell and Lange-Nielsen syndrome: a Norwegian perspective.

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Department of Medical Genetics, University Hospital, Tromsø, Norway.


Jervell and Lange-Nielsen syndrome (MIM 220400; JLNS), is a rare form of profound congenital deafness combined with syncopal attacks and sudden death due to prolonged QTc; it is an autosomal recessive trait. After its first description in Norway in 1957, later reports from many other countries have confirmed its occurrence. Nowhere is the prevalence so high as in Norway, where we estimate a prevalence of at least 1:200,000. The KCNQ1 and KCNE1 proteins coassemble in a potassium channel, and mutations in either the KCNQ1 gene or the KCNE1 gene disrupt endolymph production in the stria vascularis in the cochlea, causing deafness. KCNQ1 seems to be the major gene in JLNS. Long QT syndrome (LQTS) is a separate disorder of either autosomal dominant or recessive inheritance caused by mutations in four different ion channel genes; KCNQ1 is the one most frequently involved. Some heterozygous carriers of JLNS mutations in either gene may suffer from prolonged QTc and be symptomatic LQTS patients with a need for appropriate medical treatment to prevent life-threatening cardiac arrhythmia. In general, frameshift/stop mutations cause JLNS, and missense/splice site mutations cause LQTS, but a precise genotype-phenotype correlation in LQTS and JLNS is not established, which complicates both genetic counseling and clinical risk evaluation in carriers. We review JLNS from a Norwegian perspective because of the unusually high prevalence, the genetic homogeneity associated with considerable mutational heterogeneity, and some evidence for recurrent mutational events as well as one founder mutation. We outline the clinical implications for investigation of deaf children and cases of sudden infant death syndrome as well as careful electrocardiographic monitoring of identified mutation carriers to prevent sudden death. Am. J. Med. Genet. (Semin. Med. Genet.) 89:137-146, 1999.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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