|Specialty|| Medical genetics |
Watson syndrome is an autosomal dominant condition characterized by Lisch nodules of the ocular iris, axillary/inguinal freckling, pulmonary valvular stenosis, relative macrocephaly, short stature, and neurofibromas.
Lisch nodule, also known as iris hamartoma, is a pigmented hamartomatous nodular aggregate of dendritic melanocytes affecting the iris, named after Austrian ophthalmologist Karl Lisch (1907–1999), who first recognized them in 1937.
In humans and most mammals and birds, the iris is a thin, circular structure in the eye, responsible for controlling the diameter and size of the pupil and thus the amount of light reaching the retina. Eye color is defined by that of the iris. In optical terms, the pupil is the eye's aperture, while the iris is the diaphragm.
Macrocephaly is a condition in which the head is abnormally large; this includes the scalp, the cranial bone, and the contents of the cranium.
Watson syndrome is allelic to NF1, the same gene associated with neurofibromatosis type 1.
An allele is a variant form of a given gene. Sometimes, the presence of different alleles of the same gene can result in different observable phenotypic traits, such as different pigmentation. A notable example of this trait of color variation is Gregor Mendel's discovery that the white and purple flower colors in pea plants were the result of "pure line" traits which could be used as a control for future experiments. However, most genetic variations result in little or no observable variation.
Neurofibromin 1 (NF1) is a gene in humans that is located on chromosome 17. NF1 codes for neurofibromin, a GTPase-activating protein that negatively regulates RAS/MAPK pathway activity by accelerating the hydrolysis of Ras-bound GTP. There are currently five known neurofibromin isoforms that are expressed in different tissues and perform different functions. NF1 has a high mutation rate and mutations in NF1 can alter cellular growth control, and neural development, resulting in neurofibromatosis type 1. Symptoms of NF1 include cutaneous neurofibromas, café au lait pigment spots, plexiform neurofibromas, skeletal defects and optic nerve gliomas.
A genetic disorder is a genetic problem caused by one or more abnormalities formed in the genome. Most genetic disorders are quite rare and affect one person in every several thousands or millions. The earliest known genetic condition in a hominid was in the fossil species Paranthropus robustus, with over a third of individuals displaying Amelogenesis imperfecta.
Neurofibromatosis (NF) is a group of three conditions in which tumors grow in the nervous system. The three types are neurofibromatosis type I (NF1), neurofibromatosis type II (NF2), and schwannomatosis. In NF1 symptoms include light brown spots on the skin, freckles in the armpit and groin, small bumps within nerves, and scoliosis. In NF2 there may be hearing loss, cataracts at a young age, balance problems, flesh colored skin flaps, and muscle wasting. The tumors are generally non-cancerous.
Proteus syndrome is a rare disorder with a genetic background that can cause tissue overgrowth involving all three embryonic lineages. Patients with Proteus syndrome tend to have an increased risk of embryonic tumor development. The clinical and radiographic manifestations of Proteus syndrome are highly variable. Yet, the orthopedic manifestations of the syndrome are unique. The syndrome is named after the Greek sea-god Proteus, who could change his shape. The condition appears to have been first described in the American medical literature by Samia Temtamy and John Rogers in 1976. Michael Cohen described it in 1979. Only a few more than 200 cases have been confirmed worldwide, with estimates that about 120 people are currently alive with the condition. As attenuated forms of the disease may exist, there could be many people with Proteus syndrome who remain undiagnosed. Those most readily diagnosed are also the most severely disfigured.
Café au lait spots, or café au lait macules, are flat, pigmented birthmarks. The name café au lait is French for "coffee with milk" and refers to their light-brown color. They are also called "giraffe spots," or "coast of Maine spots," which refers to their jagged borders.
Neurofibromatosis type I (NF-1) is a complex multi-system human disorder caused by the mutation of a gene on chromosome 17 that is responsible for production of a protein called neurofibromin which is needed for normal function in many human cell types. NF-1 causes tumors along the nervous system which can grow anywhere on the body. NF-1 is one of the most common genetic disorders and is not limited to any person's race or sex. NF-1 is an autosomal dominant disorder which means that mutation or deletion of one copy of the NF-1 gene is sufficient for the development of NF-1, although presentation varies widely. As of 2015, there are at least 100,000 people in the U.S. and about 15,000 people in the UK who have been diagnosed with NF. Common symptoms of NF-1 include brownish-red spots in the colored part of the eye called Lisch nodules, benign skin tumors called neurofibromas, and larger benign tumors of nerves called plexiform neurofibromas, scoliosis, learning disabilities, vision disorders, mental disabilities, multiple café au lait spots and epilepsy. NF-1 affected individuals also have a much higher rate of cancer and cardiovascular disease than the population in general.
Neurofibromatosis type II is a genetic condition which may be inherited or may arise spontaneously. The main manifestation of the condition is the development of bilateral benign brain tumors in the nerve sheath of the cranial nerve VIII, which is the "auditory-vestibular nerve" that transmits sensory information from the inner ear to the brain. Besides, other benign brain and spinal tumors occur. Symptoms depend on the presence, localisation and growth of the tumor(s). Many people with this condition also experience visual problems. NF II is caused by mutations of the "Merlin" gene, which seems to influence the form and movement of cells. The principal treatments consist of neurosurgical removal of the tumors and surgical treatment of the eye lesions. Historically the underlying disorder has not had any therapy due to the cell function caused by the genetic mutation.
A neurofibroma is a benign nerve-sheath tumor in the peripheral nervous system. In 90% of cases, they are found as stand-alone tumors, while the remainder are found in persons with neurofibromatosis type I (NF1), an autosomal-dominant genetically inherited disease, they can result in a range of symptoms from physical disfiguration and pain to cognitive disability. Neurofibromas arise from nonmyelinating-type Schwann cells that exhibit biallelic inactivation of the NF1 gene that codes for the protein neurofibromin. This protein is responsible for regulating the RAS-mediated cell growth signaling pathway. In contrast to schwannomas, another type of tumor arising from Schwann cells, neurofibromas incorporate many additional types of cells and structural elements in addition to Schwann cells, making it difficult to identify and understand all the mechanisms through which they originate and develop.
Hypertelorism is an abnormally increased distance between two organs or bodily parts, usually referring to an increased distance between the orbits (eyes), or orbital hypertelorism. In this condition the distance between the inner eye corners as well as the distance between the pupils is greater than normal. Hypertelorism should not be confused with telecanthus, in which the distance between the inner eye corners is increased but the distances between the outer eye corners and the pupils remain unchanged.
The Crowe sign or Crowe's sign is the presence of axillary (armpit) freckling in people with neurofibromatosis type I. These freckles occur in up to 30% of people with the disease and their presence is one of six diagnostic criteria for neurofibromatosis. Freckles can also be present in the intertriginous area in neurofibromatosis, such as the inguinal fold, submamillary areas and nape of the neck.
Chromosome 17 is one of the 23 pairs of chromosomes in humans. People normally have two copies of this chromosome. Chromosome 17 spans more than 83 million base pairs and represents between 2.5 and 3% of the total DNA in cells.
Merlin is a cytoskeletal protein. In humans, it is a tumor suppressor protein involved in Neurofibromatosis type II. Sequence data reveal its similarity to the ERM protein family.
Noonan syndrome with multiple lentigines (NSML) which is part of a group called Ras/MAPK pathway syndromes, is a rare autosomal dominant, multisystem disease caused by a mutation in the protein tyrosine phosphatase, non-receptor type 11 gene (PTPN11). The disease is a complex of features, mostly involving the skin, skeletal and cardiovascular systems, which may or may not be present in all patients. The nature of how the mutation causes each of the condition's symptoms is not well known; however, research is ongoing. It is a RASopathy.
Juvenile hyaline fibromatosis is a very rare, autosomal recessive disease due to mutations in capillary morphogenesis protein-2. It occurs from early childhood to adulthood, and presents as slow-growing, pearly white or skin-colored dermal or subcutaneous papules or nodules on the face, scalp, and back, which may be confused clinically with neurofibromatosis.
Legius syndrome (LS) is an autosomal dominant condition characterized by cafe au lait spots. It was first described in 2007 and is often mistaken for neurofibromatosis type I (NF-1). It is caused by mutations in the SPRED1 gene. It is also known as neurofibromatosis type 1-like syndrome (NFLS). The condition is a RASopathy, a group of developmental syndromes due to germline mutations in genes.
The RASopathies are developmental syndromes caused by germline mutations in genes that alter the Ras subfamily and mitogen-activated protein kinases that control signal transduction, including:
Microdeletion syndrome is a syndrome caused by a chromosomal deletion smaller than 5 million base pairs spanning several genes that is too small to be detected by conventional cytogenetic methods or high resolution karyotyping. Detection is done by fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH). Larger chromosomal deletion syndromes are detectable using karyotyping techniques.
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