Background: Cleidocranial dysplasia (CCD) is a rare hereditary disorder that arises from heterozygous loss of function mutations in the runt-related transcription factor 2 (RUNX2) gene. As RUNX2 is mainly expressed in osteoblasts, CCD typically affects the skeletal and dental systems. Few studies have investigated RUNX2 mutation effects on non-skeletal systems. Here, we describe limb-girdle myopathy, an uncommon phenotype of CCD, in a patient with a heterozygous missense mutation (p.R225Q) in the RUNX2 gene.
Case presentation: A 58 year-old man presented with progressive back pain and six months of weakness in the proximal parts of all four limbs. Physical examinations showed that he was short in stature (height, 164.4 cm; weight, 79.1 kg) with a dysmorphic face, including hypertelorism, midface hypoplasia, and chin protrusion. At a young age, he had received orthodontic surgery, due to dental abnormalities. Neurological examinations revealed sloping shoulders, weakness, and atrophy in the proximal areas of the arms, shoulder girdle muscles, and legs. The deep tendon reflex and sensory system were normal. Radiological examinations revealed mild scoliosis, shortened clavicles, and a depressed skull bone, which were consistent with a clinical diagnosis of CCD. Electromyography (EMG) studies showed myogenic polyphasic waves in the deltoid, biceps brachii, and rectus femoris muscles. Instead, the EMG findings were normal in the first dorsal interosseous, tibialis anterior and facial muscles. The EMG findings were compatible with a limb-girdle pattern with facial sparing. The patient's family history showed his father and eldest daughter with similar dysmorphic faces, skeletal disorders and proximal upper extremity weakness. We sequenced the RUNX2 gene and discovered a heterozygous missense mutation (c.G674A, p.R225Q), which altered the C-terminal end of the RUNX2 protein. This mutation was predicted to inactivate the protein and might affect its interactions with other proteins. This mutation co-segregated with the disease phenotypes in the family.
Conclusions: We described limb-girdle myopathy in a patient with CCD that carried a heterozygous RUNX2 missense mutation. This uncommon phenotype expanded the phenotypic spectrum of the RUNX2 p.R225Q mutation. The role of RUNX2 in myogenic development merits future studies. Our findings remind clinicians that myopathic patients with myopathies combined with facial dysmorphism and shortened clavicles should consider the diagnosis of CCD.
Keywords: Case report; Cleidocranial dysplasia; Myopathy; Neurological system; RUNX2.