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Optimising the mutation screening strategy in Marfan syndrome and identifying genotypes with more severe aortic involvement

  • Stengl, Roland1, 2, 3
  • Bors, András3
  • Ágg, Bence1, 2, 4
  • Pólos, Miklós1, 2
  • Matyas, Gabor5
  • Molnár, Mária Judit6
  • Fekete, Bálint6
  • Csabán, Dóra6
  • Andrikovics, Hajnalka3
  • Merkely, Béla1
  • Radovits, Tamás1
  • Szabolcs, Zoltán1, 2
  • Benke, Kálmán1, 2
  • 1 Semmelweis University, Városmajor u. 68, Budapest, 1122, Hungary , Budapest (Hungary)
  • 2 Hungarian Marfan Foundation, Városmajor u. 68, Budapest, 1122, Hungary , Budapest (Hungary)
  • 3 National Institute of Hematology and Infectious Diseases, Albert Flórián út 5-7, Budapest, 1097, Hungary , Budapest (Hungary)
  • 4 Semmelweis University, Üllői út 26, Budapest, 1085, Hungary , Budapest (Hungary)
  • 5 Center for Cardiovascular Genetics and Gene Diagnostics, Foundation for People With Rare Diseases, Wagistrasse 25, Schlieren, Zurich, 8952, Switzerland , Schlieren, Zurich (Switzerland)
  • 6 Semmelweis University, Tömő u. 25-29, Budapest, 1083, Hungary , Budapest (Hungary)
Published Article
Orphanet Journal of Rare Diseases
Springer (Biomed Central Ltd.)
Publication Date
Oct 15, 2020
DOI: 10.1186/s13023-020-01569-4
Springer Nature


BackgroundMarfan syndrome (MFS) is a systemic connective tissue disorder with life-threatening manifestations affecting the ascending aorta. MFS is caused by dominant negative (DN) and haploinsufficient (HI) mutations of the FBN1 gene. Our aim was to identify mutations of MFS patients with high detection rate and to investigate the use of a gene panel for patients with Marfanoid habitus. We also aimed to examine correlations between genotype and cardiovascular manifestations to predict “malignant” mutations.Methods136 individuals were enrolled. In the first phase, next-generation sequencing (NGS) and Sanger sequencing were performed for 57 patients to screen the FBN1 gene, followed by multiplex ligation-dependent probe amplification (MLPA) in negative cases. For repeated negative results, NGS gene panel involving 9 genes was used. In the second phase, 79 patients were tested primarily with the same gene panel, negative samples were tested by MLPA.Results84 pathogenic mutations were detected, out of which 78 affected FBN1, 6 non-FBN1 mutations (2 TGFB2, 1 TGFBR2, 2 TGFBR1, 1 SMAD3) are associated with Loeys-Dietz syndrome (LDS). LDS patients had lower systemic score and they were younger, but their aortic involvement did not differ. MLPA detected 4 multi-exon deletions of FBN1 gene, which could not be identified by our first-step screening method. Aortic involvement (aortic dissection and/or dilation) did not differ significantly among HI and DN mutations (p = 0.061). Combined group of HI and DN mutations eliminating a disulphide-bonding cysteine (DN Cys) had significantly higher aortic involvement rate than DN mutations not eliminating a disulphide-bonding cysteine (DN non-Cys) (p < 0.001). Patients with DN Cys required significantly more aortic surgeries than HI and DN non-Cys mutations (p = 0.042 and p = 0.015, respectively).ConclusionsDue to the relevant number of mutations affecting genes other than FBN1, preferred approach for testing individuals with Marfanoid habitus is using a gene panel rather than single-gene analysis, followed by MLPA for negative samples. DN Cys and HI mutations should be considered as risk factors for aortic involvement. Genetic testing for patients with Marfanoid features and a systemic score under 7 is recommended, as LDS patients may have lower scores, but they may have severe cardiovascular manifestations.

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