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Am J Med Genet A. 2014 Dec;164A(12):3137-41. doi: 10.1002/ajmg.a.36741. Epub 2014 Sep 24.

Recurrent ∼100 Kb microdeletion in the chromosomal region 14q11.2, involving CHD8 gene, is associated with autism and macrocephaly.

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Centro di Riferimento Regionale di Genetica Medica, Azienda Ospedaliera-Universitaria di Perugia, Perugia, Italy.


The most frequent causes of Intellectual Disability (ID)/Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASDs) are chromosomal abnormalities, genomic rearrangements and submicroscopic deletions coupled with duplications. We report here on an 11-year-old girl showing autism, macrocephaly, and facial dysmorphism, in which array-CGH showed a de novo microdeletion of ∼114 Kb in the 14q11.2 chromosomal region, involving the SUPT16H, CHD8, and RAB2B genes. Four patients with ID and/or ASD and/or macrocephaly with overlapping deletions have been previously described: three showed very large rearrangements (>1 Mb), while one had a microdeletion of ∼101 Kb, largely overlapping the one reported herein. The minimal critical region, considering present and previous cases, contains the SUPT16H and CHD8 genes. Notably, recent studies also disclosed CHD8 heterozygous loss-of-function mutations in patients with ASD and macrocephaly. Our finding shows the presence of a recurrent microdeletion associated with a clinically recognizable phenotype, and further on underlines the pivotal role of CHD8 gene in the pathogenesis of the disorder.


CHD8 gene; SUPT16H gene; autism; macrocephaly; microdeletion 14q11.2; recurrent syndrome

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