High frequency of MYH gene mutations in a subset of patients with familial adenomatous polyposis

Gastroenterology. 2004 Jun;126(7):1681-5. doi: 10.1053/j.gastro.2004.02.022.


Background & aims: Inherited colorectal polyposis has been linked to constitutive mutations of the APC tumor suppressor gene. Recently, germline mutations in the base excision repair gene MYH have been associated with a recessively inherited form of the disease. The aim of this study was to evaluate germline mutation frequencies of both MYH and APC susceptibility genes in Italian patients with attenuated familial adenomatous polyposis.

Methods: The analysis was performed in 14 unrelated patients by using the protein truncation test for APC and genomic DNA sequencing for MYH.

Results: Overall, we identified 7 of 14 (50%) mutation carriers. Two patients were heterozygotes for an APC truncating mutation (2 of 14 [14%]), whereas 5 proved to be homozygotes or compound heterozygotes for MYH gene alterations (5 of 14 [36%]). Two MYH missense mutations, Y165C and G382D, already found to be frequent among patients from northern Europe, were also preponderant in our survey. Individuals with APC-associated syndrome showed a dominant family history of polyposis, whereas patients with MYH-associated disease were either apparently sporadic cases or had a family history consistent with recessive inheritance. MYH biallelic mutation carriers were up to 60% (5 of 8) among patients showing at least 30 adenomas and a family history with no vertical transmission of polyposis.

Conclusions: On the basis of our data, patients with attenuated familial adenomatous polyposis with >30 adenomas and no obvious vertical transmission of the disease should be considered for MYH gene testing.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adenoma / genetics*
  • Adenoma / pathology
  • Adenomatous Polyposis Coli / genetics*
  • Adenomatous Polyposis Coli / pathology
  • Adenomatous Polyposis Coli Protein / genetics
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Colorectal Neoplasms / genetics*
  • Colorectal Neoplasms / pathology
  • DNA Glycosylases / genetics*
  • Europe
  • Family Health
  • Female
  • Germ-Line Mutation
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Phenotype


  • Adenomatous Polyposis Coli Protein
  • DNA Glycosylases
  • mutY adenine glycosylase