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Expert Rev Mol Diagn. 2004 May;4(3):393-401.

Clinical features of Bloom syndrome and function of the causative gene, BLM helicase.

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Department of Pediatrics, Gifu University Graduate School of Medicine, 1-1 Yanaido,Gifu 501-1194, Japan.


Bloom syndrome is a rare autosomal recessive genetic disorder characterized by growth deficiency, unusual facies, sun-sensitive telangiectatic erythema, immunodeficiency and predisposition to cancer. The causative gene for Bloom syndrome is BLM, which encodes the BLM RecQ helicase homolog protein. The first part of this review describes a long-term follow-up study of two Bloom syndrome siblings. Subsequently, the focus is placed on the functional domains of BLM. Laboratory diagnosis of Bloom syndrome by detecting mutations in BLM is laborious and impractical, unless there are common mutations in a population. Immunoblot and immunohistochemical analyses for the detection of the BLM protein using a polyclonal BLM antibody, which are useful approaches for clinical diagnosis of Bloom syndrome, are also described. In addition, a useful adjunct for the diagnosis of Bloom syndrome in terms of the BLM function is investigated, since disease cells must have the defective BLM helicase function. This review also discusses the nuclear localization signal of BLM, the proteins that interact with BLM and tumors originating from Bloom syndrome.

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