Mutation of HOXA13 in hand-foot-genital syndrome

Nat Genet. 1997 Feb;15(2):179-80. doi: 10.1038/ng0297-179.


There are several human syndromes which involve defects of the limbs and the Müllerian ducts or its derivatives. The hand-foot-genital (HFG) syndrome is an autosomal dominant, fully penetrant disorder that was originally described by Stern et al. Additional reports describing other affected families have also been published. Limb anomalies include short first metacarpals of normal thickness, small distal phalanges of the thumbs, short middle phalanges of the fifth fingers, and fusion or delayed ossification of wrist bones. In the feet, the great toe is shorter due to a short first metatarsal and a small, pointed distal phalanx. Uterine anomalies are common in females with HFG, and typically involve a partially divided (bicornuate) or completely divided (didelphic) uterus, representing defects of Müllerian duct fusion. Urinary tract malformations in affected HFG females include a displaced urethral opening and malposition of ureteral orifices in the bladder wall; affected males may have hypospadias (ventrally misplaced urethral opening) of variable severity. We report the identification of a HOXA13 nonsense mutation in a family with hand-foot-genital syndrome. The mutation converts a highly conserved tryptophan residue in the homeodomain to a stop codon, which truncates 20 amino acids from the protein and likely eliminates or greatly reduces the ability of the protein to bind to DNA.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Abnormalities, Multiple / genetics*
  • Amino Acid Sequence
  • Codon / genetics
  • DNA / metabolism
  • DNA Mutational Analysis
  • Female
  • Foot Deformities, Congenital / genetics*
  • Hand Deformities, Congenital / genetics*
  • Homeodomain Proteins / chemistry
  • Homeodomain Proteins / genetics*
  • Homeodomain Proteins / metabolism
  • Humans
  • Hypospadias / genetics*
  • Male
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • Pedigree
  • Point Mutation*
  • Protein Binding
  • Protein Structure, Tertiary
  • Structure-Activity Relationship
  • Syndrome
  • Urethra / abnormalities*
  • Uterus / abnormalities*


  • Codon
  • Homeodomain Proteins
  • homeobox protein HOXA13
  • DNA

Associated data

  • GENBANK/U82827