Genetic mapping and haplotype analysis of oculopharyngeal muscular dystrophy

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Abstract

Oculopharyngeal muscular dystrophy (OPMD) is an autosomal dominant muscular dystrophy characterized by late onset ptosis, proximal muscle weakness and swallowing difficulties. This disease has been recently linked to chromosome 14q11.2-q13 in French-Canadian pedigrees. We studied three unrelated American families with OPMD of Hispanic descent and our results indicate that in this ethnic group, this disease also maps to chromosome 14q11.2-q13 (marker MYH7.24; Zmax = 3.98; θmax = 0). These results represent an independent demonstration of disease linkage in a second distinct ethnic group. Furthermore, our analysis demonstrates a unique haplotype that is shared by affected individuals from all three families suggesting a founder effect for OPMD in this population. Meiotic recombinants and radiation hybrid mapping permit the narrowing of the critical region to 1 Mb which will facilitate positional cloning of the OPMD disease gene.

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