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J Pediatr. 1998 May;132(5):795-801.

The prevalence of the FMR1 and FMR2 mutations among preschool children with language delay.

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Behavioral Neurogenetics Research Center, Kennedy Krieger Institute, Baltimore, Maryland 21205, USA.


We examined the prevalence of the fragile X mental retardation (FMR1) full mutation and fragile X E mutation (FMR2) among preschoolers evaluated for language delay. A total of 534 preschoolers recruited from a Developmental Pediatric or Speech and Language Disorders clinic were tested with Southern blot and polymerase chain reaction DNA analyses; 3 were found to have the FMR1 full mutation. None of the 534 children tested positive for the FMR2 full mutation; however, 3 children had unusually small FMR2 alleles suggestive of FMR2 deletions. Screening for fragile X among language-delayed preschoolers is warranted, particularly when there is a family history of mental retardation, but regardless of sex or the presence of behavioral or physical features associated with the fragile X phenotype. The potential benefit of screening for FMR2 alterations is an unexpected implication of the study and is worthy of continued exploration.

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