MECP2 mutation in a boy with severe apnea and sick sinus syndrome

Brain Dev. 2018 Sep;40(8):714-718. doi: 10.1016/j.braindev.2018.03.008. Epub 2018 Apr 7.


Rett syndrome is a neurodevelopmental disorder caused by mutations in the MECP2 gene, which encodes methyl-CpG-binding protein 2 (MECP2). It almost exclusively affects the female sex and is considered lethal in the male sex. However, an increasing number of male patients with MECP2 mutations have been reported, including patients who suddenly died of unknown causes. We report a case of MECP2 mutation in a male patient who exhibited neonatal encephalopathy. He developed severe apnea, epilepsy, and psychomotor developmental delay and died suddenly of sick sinus syndrome at 17 months of age. Severe bradycardia had been noticed since 16 months of age. His older brother followed a similar clinical course and died at 30 months of age. The brother had also experienced severe bradycardia. This familial case might help to clarify the causes of sudden death in cases of MECP2 mutations.

Keywords: Apnea; MECP2; Male; Neonatal encephalopathy; Sick sinus syndrome.

Publication types

  • Case Reports

MeSH terms

  • Apnea / genetics*
  • Child, Preschool
  • Fatal Outcome
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Male
  • Methyl-CpG-Binding Protein 2 / genetics*
  • Mutation*
  • Pedigree
  • Sick Sinus Syndrome / genetics*


  • MECP2 protein, human
  • Methyl-CpG-Binding Protein 2