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Genet Test. 2001 Winter;5(4):335-8.

Two families with blepharophimosis/ptosis/epicanthus inversus syndrome have mutations in the putative forkhead transcription factor FOXL2.

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The Medical Genetics Unit, St. George's Hospital Medical School, Tooting, London SW17 ORE, UK.


Blepharophimosis/ptosis/epicanthus inversus syndrome (BPES) is an autosomal dominant disorder that is characterized by distinctive eyelid abnormalities. Two clinical subtypes have been described in which type I, but not type II, is associated with premature ovarian failure. Both types of BPES are linked to 3q22-23, and the gene has recently been identified as the putative forkhead transcription factor FOXL2. We report mutation screening of FOXL2 in two families with this condition. The two mutations detected were frameshift mutations resulting from a small insertion or duplication within the gene. Both mutations would result in the production of novel carboxyl terminii, one terminating the predicted protein earlier than the wild type, and the other giving rise to a larger protein product, assuming these proteins or their mRNA were not degraded. Based on the present data, this would suggest that the first family should be type I and the second, type II. Although there is evidence of infertility in the first family, all 3 females in the youngest generation have normal pelvic ultrasound and hormone levels, suggesting that the divide between types I and II may not be as distinct as has been suggested.

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