Genomic answers for recurrent spontaneous abortion in Saudi Arabia: An array comparative genomic hybridization approach

Reprod Biol. 2017 Jun;17(2):133-143. doi: 10.1016/j.repbio.2017.03.003. Epub 2017 Apr 18.


To study the genomics/genetic factors associated with recurrent spontaneous abortion (RSA), as ∼50% of RSA are unexplained. However, chromosome abnormalities have been reported to play major role in RSA. We performed whole genome array-CGH based genomic analysis of forty four Saudi RSA patients to identify potential molecular and chromosomal abnormalities. We identified a total of 845 alterations, usually not detected by classic cytogenetic methods, in different genomic regions using a cut off value of -0.25 and 0.25 for structural loss and gain, whereas -1.0 and 0.58 were used for single copy number deletion and duplication respectively. We identified frequent (present at least in 10% of patients) alterations including three macro-alteration at 8p23.1, 10q11.21-q11.22 and 15q11.2 as well as large numbers of micro-deletions/amplifications with affected genes including 22q11.23 (GSTT1), 3p22.2 (CTDSPL), 6p21.32 (HLA), and 8p22 (MSR1). Pathway analysis of genes located in detected CNVs regions revealed the allograft rejection signaling, IL-4 signaling, and autoimmune thyroid disease signaling as the most significant canonical pathways associated with RSA. Whole genome array CGH technique can be used to identify potential genes, biofunctions and chromosomal abnormalities associated with RSA which is supported by our findings of a number of novel CNVs/genes (22q11.23/GSTT1, 3p22.2/CTDSPL, 6p21.32/HLA, 8p22/MSR1, and 14q32.33/AKT1) and pathways in patients affected with RSA. To improve diagnosis and treatment of RSA, a comprehensive procedure is needed for identification and validation of causative genes.

Keywords: Array-CGH; Cytogenetics; Microarray; Recurrent spontaneous abortion; Saudi Arabia.

MeSH terms

  • Abortion, Habitual / epidemiology
  • Abortion, Habitual / genetics*
  • Chromosome Aberrations
  • Chromosome Deletion
  • Chromosomes, Human
  • Comparative Genomic Hybridization
  • Cytogenetic Analysis
  • DNA Copy Number Variations
  • Female
  • Fetus
  • Genome-Wide Association Study
  • Genomics / methods*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Pregnancy
  • Saudi Arabia / epidemiology