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Eur J Hum Genet. 2010 Apr;18(4):421-8. doi: 10.1038/ejhg.2009.186. Epub 2009 Nov 4.

Copy number variation upstream of PMP22 in Charcot-Marie-Tooth disease.

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Neurogenetics Lab, Department of Neurogenetics K2-213, Academic Medical Center Amsterdam, Meibergdreef 9, 1105 AZ Amsterdam, The Netherlands.


In several individuals with a Charcot-Marie-Tooth (CMT) phenotype, we found a copy number variation (CNV) on chromosome 17p12 in the direct vicinity of the peripheral myelin protein 22 (PMP22) gene. The exact borders and size of this CNV were determined by Southern blot analysis, MLPA, vectorette PCR, and microarray hybridization analyses. All patients from six apparently unrelated families carried an identical 186-kb duplication different from the commonly reported 1.5-Mb duplication associated with CMT1A. This ancestral mutation that was not reported in the human structural variation database was only detected in affected individuals and family members. It was absent in 2124 control chromosomes and 40 patients with a chronic inflammatory demyelinating polyneuropathy (CIDP) and therefore should be regarded as causative for the disease. This variant escapes most routine diagnostic screens for CMT1A, because copy numbers of PMP22 probes were all normal. No indications were found for the involvement of the genes that are located within this duplication. A possible association of this duplication with a mutation in the PMP22 coding regions was also excluded. We suggest that this CNV proximal of the PMP22 gene leads to CMT through an unknown mechanism affecting PMP22 expression.

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