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Hum Genet. 2005 Aug;117(4):376-82. Epub 2005 Jun 2.

FMR1 repeat sizes in the gray zone and high end of the normal range are associated with premature ovarian failure.

Author information

1
Department of Medical Genetics, University of British Columbia, Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada.

Abstract

Premature ovarian failure (POF) is the occurrence of menopause before the age of 40 and affects 1% of the female population. Whereas the etiology of POF is largely unexplained, FMR1 premutation carriers are known to be at increased risk of POF compared with the general population. The FMR1 premutation alleles have 55-200 copies of a CGG repeat in the 5' untranslated region of the FMR1 gene. However, functional effects on gene expression may occur even for repeat sizes in what has been considered the "normal" range. To evaluate the role of the FMR1 repeat in POF, repeat sizes were examined in 53 women with idiopathic POF, 161 control women from the general population, and 21 women with proven fertility at an advanced maternal age. A significant increase in the number of FMR1 alleles between and including 35 and 54 CGG repeats was found in the POF patient population; 15 of 106 (14.2%) POF alleles were between and including 35 and 54 repeats, whereas only 21 of 322 (6.5%) alleles in the general population (P=0.02) and 2 of 42 (4.8%) alleles from women with proven late fertility (P=0.09) were of this size (P=0.01 versus combined controls). The effect was also significant for comparisons of genotype repeat size (repeat size weighted by the relative activity of the two FMR1 alleles) and biallelic mean (average size of the two alleles). These results are clinically relevant and suggest that the FMR1 gene plays a more significant role in the incidence of POF than has previously been thought.

PMID:
16078053
DOI:
10.1007/s00439-005-1326-8
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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