Clinical and molecular analysis of nine families with Adams-Oliver syndrome

Eur J Hum Genet. 2003 Jun;11(6):457-63. doi: 10.1038/sj.ejhg.5200980.


Adams-Oliver syndrome (AOS) is defined by the combination of limb abnormalities and scalp defects, often accompanied by skull ossification defects. We studied nine families affected with AOS, eight of which have not been clinically described before. In our patients, scalp abnormalities were most often found, followed by limb and skull defects. The most common limb abnormalities appeared to be brachydactyly, syndactyly of toes 2 and 3 and hypoplastic toenails. Additional features observed were cutis marmorata telangiectatica congenita, cryptorchidism and cardiac abnormalities. In an attempt to identify the disease-causing mutations in our families, we selected two genes, ALX4 and MSX2, which were considered serious candidates based on their known function in skull and limb development. Mutation analysis of both genes, performed by direct sequencing, identified several polymorphisms, but no disease-causing mutations. Therefore, we can conclude that the AOS in our set of patients is not caused by mutations in ALX4 or MSX2.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • DNA Mutational Analysis
  • DNA-Binding Proteins / genetics
  • Ectodermal Dysplasia / genetics*
  • Female
  • Genetic Testing*
  • Homeodomain Proteins
  • Humans
  • Limb Deformities, Congenital / genetics*
  • Male
  • Pedigree
  • Polymorphism, Genetic
  • Proteins / genetics
  • Skull / abnormalities*
  • Syndrome
  • Transcription Factors*


  • ALX4 protein, human
  • DNA-Binding Proteins
  • Homeodomain Proteins
  • MSX2 protein
  • Proteins
  • Transcription Factors