The prevalence of intragenic deletions in patients with idiopathic hypogonadotropic hypogonadism and Kallmann syndrome

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Abstract

Idiopathic hypogonadotropic hypogonadism (IHH) and Kallmann syndrome (KS) are clinically and genetically heterogeneous disorders caused by a deficiency of gonadotrophin-releasing hormone (GnRH). Mutations in three genes—KAL1, GNRHR and FGFR1—account for 15–20% of all causes of IHH/KS. Nearly all mutations are point mutations identified by traditional PCR-based DNA sequencing. The relatively new method of multiplex ligation-dependent probe amplification (MLPA) has been successful for detecting intragenic deletions in other genetic diseases. We hypothesized that MLPA would detect intragenic deletions in ∼15–20% of our cohort of IHH/KS patients. Fifty-four IHH/KS patients were studied for KAL1 deletions and 100 were studied for an autosomal panel of FGFR1, GNRH1, GNRHR, GPR54 and NELF gene deletions. Of all male and female subjects screened, 4/54 (7.4%) had KAL1 deletions. If only anosmic males were considered, 4/33 (12.1%) had KAL1 deletions. No deletions were identified in any of the autosomal genes in 100 IHH/KS patients. We believe this to be the first study to use MLPA to identify intragenic deletions in IHH/KS patients. Our results indicate ∼12% of KS males have KAL1 deletions, but intragenic deletions of the FGFR1, GNRH1, GNRHR, GPR54 and NELF genes are uncommon in IHH/KS.

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