Sleep-related hypermotor epilepsy (SHE): Contribution of known genes in 103 patients

On behalf of the Collaborative Group of Italian League Against Epilepsy (LICE) Genetic Study Group on SHE

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Purpose: Genetics of Sleep-related Hypermotor Epilepsy (SHE) includes mutations in several genes that cumulatively account for 30 % of families. This approximate estimate comes from different case-series, each focused on the screening of a single gene. We systematically investigated a large cohort of SHE patients to estimate the frequency of pathogenic variants in the main genes thus far implicated in this epilepsy syndrome. Methods: We selected familial and isolated cases diagnosed with clinical/confirmed SHE who underwent genetic analysis by comparable next generation sequencing (NGS) techniques (WES/ multigene epilepsy panel). The identified heterozygous variants were classified according to the American College of Medical Genetics and Genomics guidelines. Results: We included 103 SHE patients (M/F:61/42) who underwent NGS. Sixteen (15.5 %) were familial cases, 16.5 % had focal cortical dysplasia (FCD). We identified three pathogenic variants in CHRNA4 (2.9 %, CI: 0.6–8.3 %), two of whom novel; one pathogenic variant in KCNT1 (1 %, CI: 0.02–5.29 %); four loss-of-function variants in DEPDC5 (3.9 %, CI: 1.1–9.7 %), one of whom never reported; finally, one missense change in NPRL2 (1 %, CI: 0.02–5.29 %), already reported as pathogenic. Three out of the four patients with DEPDC5 variants had FCD. Conclusions: The overall frequency of pathogenic variants in our SHE cohort was 8.7 %, 19 % and 7 % considering familial and sporadic cases, respectively. Pathogenic variants in the GATOR1-complex genes account for 5 % of the cases. DEPDC5 shows the highest variants frequency, especially in patients with genetic-structural etiology. From a practical perspective, analysis of this gene is recommended even in isolated cases, because of possible implications for patient management.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)60-64
Number of pages5
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2020


  • Genetics
  • Nocturnal frontal lobe epilepsy
  • Sleep-related hypermotor epilepsy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neurology
  • Clinical Neurology


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