Canadian Bardet-Biedl syndrome family reduces the critical region of BBS3 (3p) and presents with a variable phenotype

Am J Med Genet. 1998 Aug 6;78(5):461-7. doi: 10.1002/(sici)1096-8628(19980806)78:5<461::aid-ajmg12>;2-d.


There are at least five distinct Bardet-Biedl syndrome (BBS) loci, four of which have been mapped: 11q (BBS1), 16q (BBS2), 3p (BBS3), and 15q (BBS4). A comparative study of the three Arab-Bedouin kindreds used to map the BBS2, BBS3, and BBS4 loci suggests that the variability in the number and severity of clinical manifestations, particularly the pattern of polydactyly, reflects chromosome-specific subtypes of BBS [Carmi et al., 1995a; Am J Med Genet 59:199-203]. We describe a Newfoundland kindred of northern European descent and confirm the initial finding of a BBS locus on chromosome 3. However, the "BBS3 phenotype," which includes polydactyly of all four limbs and a progression to morbid obesity, was not observed. Rather, four of the five BBS patients in this family had polydactyly restricted to their feet. The obesity in these patients was reversible with caloric restriction and/or exercise. Mental retardation has been considered a major symptom of BBS. However, formal IQ testing shows that these patients are of average intelligence. Haplotype analysis reduces the BBS3 critical region to a 6-cM interval between D3S1595-D3S1753.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Blindness / congenital
  • Chromosome Mapping
  • Chromosomes, Human, Pair 3*
  • Female
  • Fingers / abnormalities
  • Genetic Linkage*
  • Haplotypes*
  • Humans
  • Intellectual Disability / genetics
  • Intelligence Tests
  • Kidney / abnormalities
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Newfoundland and Labrador
  • Obesity / genetics
  • Pedigree
  • Phenotype
  • Polydactyly / genetics*
  • Retinitis Pigmentosa / genetics
  • Syndrome
  • Toes / abnormalities*