An additional patient with mycophenolate mofetil embryopathy: cardiac and facial analyses

Am J Med Genet A. 2011 Apr;155A(4):748-56. doi: 10.1002/ajmg.a.33934. Epub 2011 Mar 15.


We describe an infant male of Cambodian background who has typical craniofacial features of mycophenolate mofetil (MMF) embryopathy and a complex congenital heart defect (CHD) (double outlet right ventricle, mitral atresia, pulmonic stenosis, and total anomalous pulmonary venous return). Together with four case reports and the 20 patients included in two recent reviews, we report 24 (19 affected, five normal) patients with this pattern of anomalies. Eight (33%) have a CHD, most commonly, conotruncal or aortic arch defects (6/8, 75%). This would support the hypothesis that disturbance of cranial neural crest migration occurs in exposed infants, and may predict which additional anomalies will be observed in the future. We also attempted to score the severity of the facial anomalies in each MMF patient using a system created by plastic surgeons for patients with hemifacial microsomia. This classification had modest utility in comparing severity and correlating facial to extracranial defects. The findings are viewed with caution because of the preliminary methodology. Finally, since several exposed infants have been reported to be minimally affected, we remind clinicians to be sensitive to the potential mild expression of the effects of this teratogen. This awareness may influence clinical management of apparently normal MMF-exposed individuals.

Publication types

  • Case Reports
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Face / abnormalities*
  • Female
  • Fetal Diseases / chemically induced*
  • Fetal Diseases / diagnosis*
  • Heart Defects, Congenital / chemically induced*
  • Humans
  • Immunosuppressive Agents / adverse effects*
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Mycophenolic Acid / adverse effects
  • Mycophenolic Acid / analogs & derivatives*
  • Phenotype*
  • Pregnancy


  • Immunosuppressive Agents
  • Mycophenolic Acid