EHMT1 mosaicism in apparently unaffected parents is associated with autism spectrum disorder and neurocognitive dysfunction
Number of pages
SourceMolecular Autism, 9, (2018), article 5
Article / Letter to editor
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SubjectAll institutes and research themes of the Radboud University Medical Center; DI-BCB_DCC_Theme 3: Plasticity and Memory; Neuropsychology and rehabilitation psychology; Radboudumc 0: Other Research RIHS: Radboud Institute for Health Sciences; Radboudumc 7: Neurodevelopmental disorders DCMN: Donders Center for Medical Neuroscience; Neuro- en revalidatiepsychologie
Genetic mosaicism is only detected occasionally when there are no obvious health or developmental issues. Most cases concern healthy parents in whom mosaicism is identified upon targeted testing of a genetic defect that was initially detected in their children. A germline genetic defect affecting the euchromatin histone methyltransferase 1 (EHMT1) gene causes Kleefstra syndrome, which is associated with the typical triad of distinct facial appearance, (childhood) hypotonia, and intellectual disability. A high degree of psychopathology is associated with this syndrome. A few parents with a mosaic EHMT1 mutation have been detected upon testing after a child was diagnosed with a germline EHMT1 defect. At first glance, carriers of a mosaic EHMT1 mutation appeared to function normally. However, recent studies have shown that de novo, postzygotic mutations in important developmental genes significantly contribute to autism spectrum disorder (ASD). Therefore, we hypothesized that EHMT1 mosaicism could cause neuropsychiatric defects. To investigate this, we performed a detailed investigation of cognitive neuropsychiatric parameters in parents identified with EHMT1 mosaicism.
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