Journal Article

Premutation and intermediate-size <i>FMR1</i> alleles in 10 572 males from the general population: loss of an AGG interruption is a late event in the generation of fragile X syndrome alleles

C. Dombrowski, S. Lévesque, M. L. Morel, P. Rouillard, K. Morgan and F. Rousseau

in Human Molecular Genetics

Volume 11, issue 4, pages 371-378
Published in print February 2002 | ISSN: 0964-6906
Published online February 2002 | e-ISSN: 1460-2083 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/hmg/11.4.371
Premutation and intermediate-size FMR1 alleles in 10 572 males from the general population: loss of an AGG interruption is a late event in the generation of fragile X syndrome alleles

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We previously reported a 1:259 prevalence of female carriers of FMR1 premutation-size alleles (greater than 54 triplet repeats) in the general population. We now have screened 10 572 independent males from the same population for similar alleles using high-throughput Southern blotting. We identified 13 male carriers of an allele with more than 54 repeats. This corresponds to a prevalence of 1:813 males (95% confidence interval 1:527 to 1:1781). Haplotype analysis of four markers flanking the triplet array revealed that the prevalence of the major fragile X mutation-associated haplotype was increased among FMR1 alleles of 40–54 repeats. Although sequencing of highly unstable premutation alleles from fragile X families revealed only pure CGG tracts, this was not the case for alleles of similar size that were identified in males from the general population. Forty-eight out of forty-nine alleles of 40 or more triplets had one or two AGG interruptions. This observation, combined with the observation of the enrichment of major fragile X syndrome haplotypes in all alleles of this size, is evidence that the loss of an AGG interruption in the triplet repeat array is not necessary for expansion of normal alleles of 29–30 triplets to intermediate size. The loss of AGG interruptions thus appears to be a late event that leads to greatly increased instability and may be related to the haplotype background of specific FMR1 alleles.

Journal Article.  6160 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Genetics and Genomics

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