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Hum Mol Genet. 2009 Dec 15;18(24):4724-33. doi: 10.1093/hmg/ddp435. Epub 2009 Sep 14.

Multilocus methylation analysis in a large cohort of 11p15-related foetal growth disorders (Russell Silver and Beckwith Wiedemann syndromes) reveals simultaneous loss of methylation at paternal and maternal imprinted loci.

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Laboratoire d'Explorations Fonctionnelles Endocriniennes, APHP, Hôpital Armand Trousseau, INSERM UMR-S938 Team 4, Université Pierre et Marie Curie-Paris 6, Paris, France.


Genomic imprinting plays an important role in mammalian development. Loss of imprinting (LOI) through loss (LOM) or gain (GOM) of methylation is involved in many human disorders and cancers. The imprinted 11p15 region is crucial for the control of foetal growth and LOI at this locus is implicated in two clinically opposite disorders: Beckwith Wiedemann syndrome (BWS) with foetal overgrowth associated with an enhanced tumour risk and Russell-Silver syndrome (RSS) with intrauterine and postnatal growth restriction. So far, only a few studies have assessed multilocus LOM in human imprinting diseases. To investigate multilocus LOI syndrome, we studied the methylation status of five maternally and two paternally methylated loci in a large series (n = 167) of patients with 11p15-related foetal growth disorders. We found that 9.5% of RSS and 24% of BWS patients showed multilocus LOM at regions other than ICR1 and ICR2 11p15, respectively. Moreover, over two third of multilocus LOM RSS patients also had LOM at a second paternally methylated locus, DLK1/GTL2 IG-DMR. No additional clinical features due to LOM of other loci were found suggesting an (epi)dominant effect of the 11p15 LOM on the clinical phenotype for this series of patients. Surprisingly, four patients displayed LOM at both ICR1 and ICR2 11p15. Three of them had a RSS and one a BWS phenotype. Our results show for the first time that multilocus LOM can also concern RSS patients. Moreover, LOM can involve both paternally and maternally methylated loci in the same patient.

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