Type II lissencephaly (type II LIS) is a group of autosomal recessive congenital muscular dystrophies (CMD) associated with defects in alpha-DG O-glycosylation, which comprises Walker-Warburg syndrome, Fukuyama cerebral and muscular dystrophy, or muscle-eye-brain disease. The most severe forms of these diseases often have a fetal presentation and lead to a pregnancy termination. We report here the first molecular study on fetal type II LIS in a series of 47 fetuses from 41 unrelated families. Sequencing of the different genes known to be involved in alpha-DG O-glycosylation allowed the molecular diagnosis in 22 families: involvement of POMT1 was demonstrated in 32% of cases, whereas POMGNT1 and POMT2 were incriminated in 15% and in 7% of cases, respectively. We found 30 different mutations in these three genes, 25 were described herein for the first time, 15 in POMT1, and five in POMT2 and POMGNT1. Despite sequencing of FKRP, FCMD, and LARGE, no definitive molecular diagnosis could be made for the other half of our cases. Preliminary results concerning genotype-phenotype correlations show that the choice of the first gene sequenced should depend on the clinical severity of the type II LIS; POMT1 and POMT2 for severest clinical picture and POMGNT1 for milder disease. The other genes, FKRP, FCMD, and LARGE, seem not to be implicated in the fetal form of CMD.
Copyright 2007 Wiley-Liss, Inc.