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Horm Metab Res. 2015 Jun;47(7):497-503. doi: 10.1055/s-0034-1394371. Epub 2014 Nov 3.

Genome-wide paternal uniparental disomy as a cause of Beckwith-Wiedemann syndrome associated with recurrent virilizing adrenocortical tumors.

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Department of Endocrinology, CHU Reims, Hôpital Robert Debré, Reims, France.
Programme Cartes d'Identité des Tumeurs, Ligue Nationale contre le Cancer, Paris, France.
Department of Public Health, Experimental and Forensic Medicine, University of Pavia, Pavia, Italy.
Department of Pathology, CHU Reims, Hôpital Robert Debré, Reims, France.
Laboratory of Endocrine Functional Explorations, APHP, Hôpital Armand Trousseau, INSERM UMRS 938 Team 4, Université Pierre et Marie Curie-Paris, Faculté de Médecine, Paris, France.
Department of Endocrinology-Metabolism-Cancer, APHP, Institut Cochin, Université Paris V-René Descartes, Paris, France.
Service of Diabetology, Hospital of Troyes, Troyes, France.
Department of Endocrine Surgery, CHU Reims, Hôpital Robert Debré, Reims, France.
Department of Radiology, CHU Reims, Hôpital Robert Debré, Reims, France.
Department of Genetics, CHU Reims, Hôpital Robert Debré, Reims, France.
Institut de Pharmacologie Moléculaire et Cellulaire, CNRS UMR7275, Sophia Antipolis-Valbonne, France.


Beckwith-Wiedemann syndrome (BWS) is an overgrowth syndrome characterized by fetal macrosomia, macroglossia, and abdominal wall defects. BWS patients are at risk to develop Wilms tumor, neuroblastoma, hepatoblastoma, and adrenal tumors. A young woman with BWS features, but with inconclusive genetic evidence for the disease, came to clinical observation for signs of virilization at the age of 16 years. An adrenocortical tumor was diagnosed and surgically resected. The tumor underwent 2 local relapses that were also surgically treated. The patient was also operated to remove a breast fibroadenoma. SNP arrays were used to analyze chromosome abnormalities in normal and tumor samples from the patient and her parents. The patient presented genome-wide mosaic paternal uniparental disomy (patUPD) both in the adrenocortical and the breast tumors, with different degrees of loss of heterozygosity (LOH). The more recent relapses of the adrenocortical tumor showed a loss of part of chromosome 17p that was absent in the first tumor. Analysis of a skin biopsy sample also showed mosaic patUPD with partial LOH, while no LOH was detected in leukocyte DNA. This case shows that virilizing adrenocortical tumors may be a clinical feature of patients with BWS. The SNP array technology is useful to diagnose genome-wide patUPD mosaicism in BWS patients with an inconclusive molecular diagnosis and underlines the tumorigenic potential of the absence of the maternal genome combined with an excess of the paternal genome.

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