Meier-Gorlin syndrome genotype-phenotype studies: 35 individuals with pre-replication complex gene mutations and 10 without molecular diagnosis

Sonja A. De Munnik, Louise S. Bicknell, Salim Aftimos, Jumana Y. Al-Aama, Yolande Van Bever, Michael B. Bober, Jill Clayton-Smith, Alaa Y. Edrees, Murray Feingold, Alan Fryer, Johanna M. Van Hagen, Raoul C. Hennekam, Maaike C E Jansweijer, Diana Johnson, Sarina G. Kant, John M. Opitz, A. Radha Ramadevi, Willie Reardon, Alison Ross, Pierre SardaConstance T R M Schrander-Stumpel, Jeroen Schoots, I. Karen Temple, Paulien A. Terhal, Annick Toutain, Carol A. Wise, Michael Wright, David L. Skidmore, Mark E. Samuels, Lies H. Hoefsloot, Nine V A M Knoers, Han G. Brunner, Andrew P. Jackson, Ernie M H F Bongers

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

88 Scopus citations


Meier-Gorlin syndrome (MGS) is an autosomal recessive disorder characterized by microtia, patellar aplasia/hypoplasia, and short stature. Recently, mutations in five genes from the pre-replication complex (ORC1, ORC4, ORC6, CDT1, and CDC6), crucial in cell-cycle progression and growth, were identified in individuals with MGS. Here, we report on genotype-phenotype studies in 45 individuals with MGS (27 females, 18 males; age 3 months-47 years). Thirty-five individuals had biallelic mutations in one of the five causative pre-replication genes. No homozygous or compound heterozygous null mutations were detected. In 10 individuals, no definitive molecular diagnosis was made. The triad of microtia, absent/hypoplastic patellae, and short stature was observed in 82% of individuals with MGS. Additional frequent clinical features were mammary hypoplasia (100%) and abnormal genitalia (42%; predominantly cryptorchidism and hypoplastic labia minora/majora). One individual with ORC1 mutations only had short stature, emphasizing the highly variable clinical spectrum of MGS. Individuals with ORC1 mutations had significantly shorter stature and smaller head circumferences than individuals from other gene categories. Furthermore, compared with homozygous missense mutations, compound heterozygous mutations appeared to have a more severe effect on phenotype, causing more severe growth retardation in ORC4 and more frequently pulmonary emphysema in CDT1. A lethal phenotype was seen in four individuals with compound heterozygous ORC1 and CDT1 mutations. No other clear genotype-phenotype association was observed. Growth hormone and estrogen treatment may be of some benefit, respectively, to growth retardation and breast hypoplasia, though further studies in this patient group are needed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)598-606
Number of pages9
JournalEuropean Journal of Human Genetics
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 2012


  • Meier-Gorlin syndrome
  • ear-patella-short stature syndrome
  • genotype-phenotype
  • origin recognition complex
  • pre-replication complex

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Genetics
  • Genetics(clinical)


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