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J Orofac Orthop. 2013 Jul;74(4):295-308. doi: 10.1007/s00056-013-0138-z. Epub 2013 Jul 5.

Genetic background of nonsyndromic oligodontia: a systematic review and meta-analysis.

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Department of Orthodontics, Medical Center for Dental and Oral Medicine, Justus-Liebig-Universität Gießen, Germany.



The goal of this work was to identify all known gene mutations that have been associated with the development of nonsyndromic oligodontia.


A systematic literature search was performed electronically in two databases (PubMed, Medpilot) supplemented by a hand search. Articles published up to March 2012 were considered. Search terms were combined as follows: oligodontia and genes, oligodontia and mutations, tooth agenesis and genes, and tooth agenesis and mutations. A meta-analysis of the data was conducted based on the Tooth Agenesis Code (TAC).


Seven genes are currently known to have a potential for causing nonsyndromic oligodontia. All these genes vary both in terms of number of identified mutations and in terms of number of documented patients: 33 mutations and 93 patients are on record for PAX9, 10 mutations and 51 patients for EDA, 12 mutations and 33 patients for MSX1, 6 mutations and 17 patients for AXIN2, and 1 mutation in 1 patient for EDARADD, NEMO, and KRT17 each. A total TAC score of 250 was found to have cutoff properties, as 100% of MSX1 and 80% of EDA patients exhibited TAC ≤ 250, whereas 96.9% of PAX9 and 90% of AXIN2 patients exhibited TAC >250. Furthermore, 94.3% of EDA patients but only 28.6% of MSX1 patients exhibited odd-numbered TAC scores in at least one quadrant, and 72.7% of PAX9 but none of the AXIN2 patients were found to show TAC scores of 112 in at least one quadrant.


In order of decreasing frequency, PAX9, EDA, MSX1, AXIN2, EDARADD, NEMO, and KRT17 are the seven genes currently known to have a potential for causing nonsyndromic oligodontia. TAC scores enabled us to identify an association between oligodontia phenotypes and genotypes in the patients covered by this meta-analysis.

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