Many multiple congenital anomalies (MCA) are caused by recombination between homologous segmental duplications. In this report, we describe a novel "de novo" microdeletion in male monozygotic twins presenting with aortic valve abnormality, seizure disorder, and mild mental retardation. Using array based comparative genomic hybridization, we mapped the microdeletion to the short arm of chromosome 16 at 16p11.2 and refined it using hemizygosity mapping to about 593 kb, a region that overlaps with 24 genes. The most probable mechanism for this microdeletion is through a specific intrachromosomal recombination between two, nearly identical, segmental duplications each spanning 147 kb that are flanking the microdeletion. Based on the phenotypes presented in the twins and what is known about the genes within the 16p11.2 microdeletion, we identified several genes that are strong candidates for the normal development of the aortic valve, as well as the development of seizure disorder and mental retardation.
(c) 2007 Wiley-Liss, Inc.