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Horm Res. 2002;57 Suppl 2:71-8.

IMAGe association: additional clinical features and evidence for recessive autosomal inheritance.

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Service d'Endocrinologie Pédiatrique, Hôpital Saint Vincent de Paul, Paris, France.


Congenital adrenal hypoplasia (CAH) normally occurs in the neonatal period, with patients presenting with more or less severe salt-wasting syndrome. X-linked CAH has been associated with mutations in the DAX-1 gene, and boys have also been shown to have hypogonadotrophic hypogonadism. Recently, in three unrelated boys, CAH was associated with intrauterine growth retardation (IUGR), metaphyseal dysplasia and genital abnormalities, defining a new association called IMAGe. We now report four additional patients with this association, including the first living female. The four patients belong to two unrelated families (one brother and one sister from each family). These patients have the main clinical characteristics of IMAGe association: IUGR, facial dysmorphy (frontal bossing, broad nasal bridge, low-set ears), short limbs due to metaphyseal dysplasia, and adrenal insufficiency. As these patients are older than the initial three patients, we can also describe additional features: short adult height, normal puberty in boys as well as in the living girl. The boys have hypospadias associated with micropenis. The living girl came to clinical attention at the age of 5 years as a result of a familial survey, and careful questioning revealed that she had been suffering from mild adrenal insufficiency since early childhood. At least one boy has congenital hypotonia due to muscular dystrophy. In conclusion, these four new cases display familial transmission, strongly suggesting Mendelian autosomal recessive inheritance. Adrenal insufficiency may be mild. Hypotonia, described in all the patients, might be related to paucisymptomatic muscular dystrophy, as this condition is clearly heterogeneous varying with regard to severity, associated manifestations and outcome. If this symptom is part of the syndrome, which we cannot assume, it could help to localize the candidate gene.

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