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A Targeted Gene Panel That Covers Coding, Non-coding and Short Tandem Repeat Regions Improves the Diagnosis of Patients With Neurodegenerative Diseases.


ABSTRACT: Genetic testing for neurodegenerative diseases (NDs) is highly challenging because of genetic heterogeneity and overlapping manifestations. Targeted-gene panels (TGPs), coupled with next-generation sequencing (NGS), can facilitate the profiling of a large repertoire of ND-related genes. Due to the technical limitations inherent in NGS and TGPs, short tandem repeat (STR) variations are often ignored. However, STR expansions are known to cause such NDs as Huntington's disease and spinocerebellar ataxias type 3 (SCA3). Here, we studied the clinical utility of a custom-made TGP that targets 199 NDs and 311 ND-associated genes on 118 undiagnosed patients. At least one known or likely pathogenic variation was found in 54 patients; 27 patients demonstrated clinical profiles that matched the variants; and 16 patients whose original diagnosis were refined. A high concordance of variant calling were observed when comparing the results from TGP and whole-exome sequencing of four patients. Our in-house STR detection algorithm has reached a specificity of 0.88 and a sensitivity of 0.82 in our SCA3 cohort. This study also uncovered a trove of novel and recurrent variants that may enrich the repertoire of ND-related genetic markers. We propose that a combined comprehensive TGPs-bioinformatics pipeline can improve the clinical diagnosis of NDs.

SUBMITTER: Yu AC 

PROVIDER: S-EPMC6917647 | BioStudies | 2019-01-01

REPOSITORIES: biostudies

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