Haploinsufficiency for ANKRD11-flanking genes makes the difference between KBG and 16q24.3 microdeletion syndromes: 12 new cases

Eur J Hum Genet. 2017 Jun;25(6):694-701. doi: 10.1038/ejhg.2017.49. Epub 2017 Apr 19.


16q24 deletion involving the ANKRD11 gene, ranging from 137 kb to 2 Mb, have been associated with a microdeletion syndrome characterized by variable cognitive impairment, autism spectrum disorder, facial dysmorphisms with dental anomalies, brain abnormalities essentially affecting the corpus callosum and short stature. On the other hand, patients carrying either deletions encompassing solely ANKRD11 or its loss-of-function variants were reported in association with the KBG syndrome, characterized by a very similar phenotype, including mild-to-moderate intellectual disability, short stature and macrodontia of upper incisors, with inter and intrafamilial variability. To assess whether the haploinsufficiency of ANKRD11-flanking genes, such as ZFPM1, CDH15 and ZNF778, contributed to either the severity of the neurological impairment or was associated with other clinical features, we collected 12 new cases with a 16q24.2q24.3 deletion (de novo in 11 cases), ranging from 343 kb to 2.3 Mb. In 11 of them, the deletion involved the ANKRD11 gene, whereas in 1 case only flanking genes upstream to it were deleted. By comparing the clinical and genetic features of our patients with those previously reported, we show that the severity of the neurological phenotype and the frequency of congenital heart defects characterize the deletions that, besides ANKRD11, contain ZFPM1, CDH15 and ZNF778 as well. Moreover, the presence of thrombocytopenia and astigmatism should be taken into account to distinguish between 16q24 microdeletion syndrome and KBG syndrome. The single patient not deleted for ANKRD11, whose phenotype is characterized by milder psychomotor delay, cardiac congenital malformation, thrombocytopenia and astigmatism, confirms all this data.

Publication types

  • Case Reports

MeSH terms

  • Abnormalities, Multiple / diagnosis
  • Abnormalities, Multiple / genetics*
  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Bone Diseases, Developmental / diagnosis
  • Bone Diseases, Developmental / genetics*
  • Cadherins / genetics
  • Child
  • Chromosome Deletion*
  • Chromosomes, Human, Pair 16 / genetics*
  • Diagnosis, Differential
  • Facies
  • Female
  • Haploinsufficiency*
  • Humans
  • Intellectual Disability / diagnosis
  • Intellectual Disability / genetics*
  • Male
  • Nuclear Proteins / genetics
  • Phenotype
  • Repressor Proteins / genetics*
  • Tooth Abnormalities / diagnosis
  • Tooth Abnormalities / genetics*
  • Transcription Factors / genetics*
  • Transcription Factors / metabolism


  • ANKRD11 protein, human
  • Cadherins
  • Nuclear Proteins
  • Repressor Proteins
  • Transcription Factors
  • ZFPM1 protein, human
  • ZNF778 protein, human
  • M-cadherin

Supplementary concepts

  • KBG syndrome