Background: Bilateral Wilms tumours (BWTs) occur by germline mutation of various predisposing genes; one of which is WT1 whose abnormality was reported in 17-38% of BWTs in Caucasians, whereas no such studies have been conducted in East-Asians. Carriers with WT1 mutations are increasing because of improved survival.
Methods: Statuses of WT1 and IGF2 were examined in 45 BWTs from 31 patients with WT1 sequencing and SNP array-based genomic analyses. The penetrance rates were estimated in WT1-mutant familial Wilms tumours collected from the present and previous studies.
Results: We detected WT1 abnormalities in 25 (81%) of 31 patients and two families, which were included in the penetrance rate analysis of familial Wilms tumour. Of 35 BWTs from the 25 patients, 31 had small homozygous WT1 mutations and uniparental disomy of IGF2, while 4 had large 11p13 deletions with the retention of 11p heterozygosity. The penetrance rate was 100% if children inherited small WT1 mutations from their fathers, and 67% if inherited the mutations from their mothers, or inherited or had de novo 11p13 deletions irrespective of parental origin (P=0.057).
Conclusions: The high incidence of WT1 abnormalities in Japanese BWTs sharply contrasts with the lower incidence in Caucasian counterparts, and the penetrance rates should be clarified for genetic counselling of survivors with WT1 mutations.