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PAX6 aniridia and interhemispheric brain anomalies.
PURPOSE: To report the clinical and genetic study of patients with autosomal dominant aniridia. METHODS: We studied ten patients with aniridia from three families of Egyptian origin. All patients underwent full ophthalmologic, general and neurological examination, and blood drawing. Cerebral magnetic resonance imaging was performed in the index case of each family. Genomic DNA was prepared from venous leukocytes, and direct sequencing of all the exons and intron-exon junctions of the Paired Box gene 6 (PAX6) was performed after PCR amplification. Phenotype description, including ophthalmic and cerebral anomalies, mutation detection in PAX6 and phenotype-genotype correlation was acquired. RESULTS: Common features observed in the three families included absence of iris tissue, corneal pannus with different degrees of severity, and foveal hypoplasia with severely reduced visual acuity. In Families 2 and 3, additional findings, such as lens dislocation, lens opacities or polar cataract, and glaucoma, were observed. We identified two novel (c.170-174delTGGGC [p.L57fs17] and c.475delC [p.R159fs47]) and one known (c.718C>T [p.R240X]) PAX6 mutations in the affected members of the three families. Systemic and neurological examination was normal in all ten affected patients. Cerebral magnetic resonance imaging showed absence of the pineal gland in all three index patients. Severe hypoplasia of the brain anterior commissure was associated with the p.L57fs17 mutation, absence of the posterior commissure with p.R159fs47, and optic chiasma atrophy and almost complete agenesis of the corpus callosum with p.R240X. CONCLUSIONS: We identified two novel PAX6 mutations in families with severe aniridia. In addition to common phenotype of aniridia and despite normal neurological examination, absence of the pineal gland and interhemispheric brain anomalies were observed in all three index patients. The heterogeneity of PAX6 mutations and brain anomalies are highlighted. This report emphasizes the association between aniridia and brain anomalies with or without functional impact, such as neurodevelopment delay or auditory dysfunction.
Adult Brain, Gene, Mutations, Defects, Humans, Family, Chromosome-11p13, Abnormalities, Malformations, Transcription
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