Analytical validation and chromosomal distribution of regions of homozygosity by oligonucleotide array comparative genomic hybridization from normal prenatal and postnatal case series

Mol Cytogenet. 2019 Mar 6;12:12. doi: 10.1186/s13039-019-0424-6. eCollection 2019.


Background: Regions of homozygosity (ROH) are continuous homozygous segments commonly seen in the human genome. The integration of single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) probes into current array comparative genomic hybridization (aCGH) analysis has enabled the detection of the ROH. However, for detecting and reporting biologically relevant ROH in a clinical setting, it is necessary to assess the analytical validity of SNP calling and the chromosomal distribution of ROH in normal populations.

Methods: The analytical validity was evaluated by correlating the consistency of SNP calling with the quality parameters of aCGH and by accessing the accuracy of SNP calling using PCR based restriction enzyme digestion and Sanger sequencing. The distribution of ROH was evaluated by the numbers, sizes, locations, and frequencies of ROH from the collection of data from parental, postnatal, and prenatal case series that had normal aCGH and chromosome results.

Results: The SNP calling failure rate was 20-30% with a derivative Log2 ratio (DLR) below 0.2 and increased significantly to 30-40% with DLR of 0.2-0.4. The accuracy of SNP calling is 93%. Of the 958 cases tested, 34% had no ROH, 64% had one to four ROH, and less than 1% had more than five ROH. Of the 1196 ROH detected, 95% were less than 10 Mb. The distribution of numbers and sizes of ROH showed no differences among the parental, pediatric and prenatal case series and test tissues. The chromosomal distribution of ROH was non-random with ROH seen most frequently in chromosome 8, less frequently in chromosomes 2, 6, 10, 12, 11 and 18, and most rarely seen on chromosomes 15, 19, 21 and 22. Recurrent ROH occurring with a frequency greater than 1% were detected in 17 chromosomal loci which locates either in the pericentric or interstitial regions.

Conclusion: With a quality control parameter of DLR set at below 0.2, the consistency of SNP calling would be 75%, the accuracy of SNP call could be 93%, and the observed chromosomal distribution of ROH could be used as a reference. This aCGH analysis could be a reliable screening tool to document biologically relevant ROH and recommend further molecular analysis.

Keywords: Array comparative genomic hybridization (aCGH); Regions of homozygosity (ROH); Single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) calling.