Genotype-phenotype correlations and clinical diagnostic criteria in Wolf-Hirschhorn syndrome

Marcella Zollino, Cristina Di Stefano, Giuseppe Zampino, Pierpaolo Mastroiacovo, Tracy J. Wright, Giovanni Sorge, Angelo Selicorni, Romano Tenconi, Alessandro Zappal, Agatino Battaglia, Maja Di Rocco, Giandomenico Palka, Rosanna Pallotta, Michael R. Altherr, Giovanni Neri

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


We report on a clinical-genetic study of 16 Wolf-Hirschhorn syndrome (WHS) patients. Hemizygosity of 4p16.3 was detected by conventional prometaphase chromosome analysis (11 patients) or by molecular probes on apparently normal chromosomes (4 patients). One patient had normal chromosomes without a detectable molecular deletion within the WHS 'critical region.' In each deleted patient, the deletion was demonstrated to be terminal by fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH). The proximal breakpoint of the rearrangement was established by prometaphase chromosome analysis in cases with a visible deletion. It was within the 4p16.1 band in six patients, apparently coincident with the distal half of this band in five patients. The extent of each of the four submicroscopic deletions was established by FISH analyses with a set of overlapping cosmid clones spanning the 4p16.3 region. We found ample variations in both the size of the deletions and the position of the respective breakpoints. The precise definition of the cytogenetic defect permitted an analysis of the genotype-phenotype correlations in WHS, leading to the proposal of a set of minimal diagnostic criteria, which in turn may facilitate the selection of critical patients in the search for the gene(s) responsible for this disorder. We observed that genotype-phenotype correlations in WHS mostly depend on the size of the deletion, a deletion of

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)254-261
Number of pages8
JournalAmerican Journal of Medical Genetics
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Sep 18 2000


  • Microdeletion
  • Nondeleted patient
  • Wolf-Hirschhorn syndrome

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Genetics(clinical)


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