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Am J Hum Genet. 1992 Dec;51(6):1344-8.

Ethnic heterogeneity and cystic fibrosis transmembrane regulator (CFTR) mutation frequencies in Chicago-area CF families.

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Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, University of Chicago, IL 60637.


The identification of a common mutation, delta F508, in the CFTR gene allowed, for the first time, the detection of cystic fibrosis (CF) carriers in the general population. Further genetic studies revealed > 100 additional disease-causing mutations in this gene, few of which occur on > 1% of CF chromosomes in any ethnic group. Prior to establishing counseling guidelines and carrier risk assessments, we sought to establish the frequencies of the CFTR mutations that are present in CF families living in the Chicago area, a region notable for its ethnic heterogeneity. Our sample included 283 unrelated CF carriers, with the following ethnic composition: 78% non-Ashkenazi Caucasians, 5% Ashkenazi, 9% African-American, 3% Mexican, 0.3% Native American, and 5% mixed ancestry. When a panel of 10 mutations (delta F508, delta I507, G542X, G551D, R553X, S549N, R1162X, W1282X, N1303K, and 1717-1G-->A) was used, detection rates ranged from 75% in non-Ashkenazi Caucasians to 40% in African-Americans. These data suggest that the goal of screening for 90%-95% of CF mutations may be unrealistic in this and other, similar U.S. populations.

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