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Brain October 1, 2001; 124 (Pt 10): 1958-67.
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Clinical, electrophysiological and molecular genetic characteristics of 93 patients with X-linked Charcot-Marie-Tooth disease.

Dubourg O , Tardieu S , Birouk N , Gouider R , Léger JM , Maisonobe T , Brice A , Bouche P , LeGuern E .

X-linked dominant Charcot-Marie-Tooth (CMTX) disease is a motor and sensory neuropathy caused by mutations in the connexin 32 (CX32) gene. In this study we report the clinical, electrophysiological and genetic features of 93 patients (41 males, 52 females) from 37 unrelated families with CMTX. Age at onset was 15.4 +/- 9.6 years in males (range 1-40 years) and 18.7 +/- 13.1 years in females (range 1-56 years) (P = 0.22) and the duration of disease at the time of examination was 18.3 +/- 14.6 years in males and 23.9 +/- 13.7 years in females (P = 0.11). Males were more severely affected than females, with significantly more frequent muscle weakness, amyotrophy, proprioception loss, upper limb areflexia and pes cavus. Females were more frequently asymptomatic, whereas high functional disability scores were more frequently encountered in males. The electrophysiological studies showed that motor nerve conduction velocities in CMTX females, but not males, were heterogeneous between nerves compared with Charcot-Marie-Tooth type 1A (CMT1A) patients and controls. The terminal latency index (TLI) for the median nerve was 0.37 +/- 0.08; it was similar in men and in women and a little higher than those observed in CMT1A and controls. The range of values for median TLI was wider in both male and female CMTX patients than in controls, but was similar to that of CMT1A patients, suggesting that motor conduction was relatively homogeneous within a given nerve. Twenty-seven different CX32 mutations, including missense (n = 23), nonsense (n = 2) and frameshift mutations (n = 1) and one entire deletion of the CX32 coding sequence, were observed in the 37 families. Four of these mutations are described for the first time. The phenotype of the patients, especially age at onset, is discussed in relation to the functional consequences of CX32 mutations, analysed in vitro in Xenopus oocytes and mammalian cells. CMTX patients with age at onset in the first decade mostly presented non-functional mutations, suggesting that the physiological consequences of the mutations affect age at onset in CMTX.

PubMed ID: 11571214
Article link: Brain

Species referenced: Xenopus
Genes referenced: gjb1 pes1 pmp22