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Blood Cells Mol Dis. 2002 Jul-Aug;29(1):41-7.

Prevalence and penetrance of HFE mutations in 4865 unselected primary care patients.

Author information

1
Rochester General Hospital, 1425 Portland Avenue, Rochester, NY 14621, USA. prad.phatak@viahealth.org

Abstract

Two HFE gene mutations, C282Y and H63D, underlie the vast majority of cases of hereditary hemochromatosis. We performed a cross-sectional primary care-based study to determine the allele frequency of the C282Y and H63D mutations and the penetrance of each of the affected genotypes defined by their presence. Patients had previously undergone transferrin saturation (TS) testing. A total of 4865 unselected frozen serum samples were analyzed to determine serum ferritin (SF) levels. Genomic DNA isolated from these samples was analyzed for the C282Y and H63D HFE mutations. Homozygotes for each mutation and compound heterozygotes were evaluated to determine clinical penetrance. The allele frequency of C282Y was 0.0507 among Caucasian and 0.0067 among African Americans; that of H63D was 0.1512 and 0.0263, respectively. TS was > or =55% in 83% of individuals with C282Y/C282Y, 14.5% of C282Y/H63D, and 5% of H63D/H63D; SF was > or =300 microG/L in 42, 9, and 5% of these genotypes, respectively. None of the 12 C282Y homozygotes had cardiac dysfunction or hepatic cirrhosis. Only 9/129 (7%) individuals with the genotypes C282Y/H63D or H63D/H63D had a SF > or =300 microG/L; many had explanations other than iron overload that accounted for this increase. Thus, the prevalence of the common HFE mutations is the same in our population as previously described. TS screening would detect most C282Y homozygotes but not the other two genotypes. The penetrance of C282Y/C282Y is significant. The biochemical penetrance of H63D/H63D and C282Y/H63D is modest and the clinical penetrance is low.

PMID:
12482402
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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