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J Med Genet. 2007 Jan;44(1):31-7. Epub 2006 Sep 13.

Genetic and epigenetic defects at the 6q24 imprinted locus in a cohort of 13 patients with transient neonatal diabetes: new hypothesis raised by the finding of a unique case with hemizygotic deletion in the critical region.

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Inserm U781, Université Paris 5, Paris, France.



Transient neonatal diabetes (TND) is a rare form of diabetes usually present in the first few days after birth that resolves within 1 year but that has a tendency to recur later in life. It can be associated with chromosome 6 paternal uniparental disomy (UPD), paternal duplications or loss of maternal methylation at the 6q24 imprinted locus.


To report on a cohort of 13 sporadic TND cases, including five with birth defects (congenital abnormalities of heart, brain and bone) and eight without.


The hallmarks of diabetes were similar in patients with or without 6q24 defects. The chromosome 6 abnormalities in our patients (n = 13) included 2 of 13 (approximately 15.4%) cases of paternal UPD6, 2 of 11 (approximately 18%) cases of complete and 3 of 11 (approximately 27%) cases of partial loss of the maternal methylation signature upstream of ZAC1-HYMAI imprinted genes in non-UPD cases, and 1 of 13 (approximately 7.7%) cases of hemizygotic deletion.


The deletion was found in a patient with severe congenital abnormalities. This genetic lesion was not reported previously. The hypothesis of an effect on regulatory elements critical for imprinting and tissue-specific gene expression in early development by the deletion is raised. The data presented here may contribute to the diagnosis and the understanding of imprinting in the region.

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