ABSTRACT: Fragile X syndrome [FRA(X)] as the most common form of inherited mental retardation in man has an incidence of one per 1250 and is associated with a fragile site at Xq27.3. A gene was identified at the fragile X locus and was designated Fragile X Mental Retardation-1 (FMR-1). FRA(X) resulted from expansion of (CGG)n trinucleotide repeat in 5' untranslated region of the human FMR-1 gene, and was associated with abnormal methylation of a CpG island 250 bp proximal to this (CGG)n repeat. Males with typical FRA(X) showed repression of FMR-1 transcription and absence of FMR-1 protein, which was believed to contribute to the fragile X phenotype. FMR-1 mRNA extracted from leukocytes in normal and clinically suspected males were detected by RT-PCR. The methylation status and CGG expansion were also studied by PCR and Southern blot. Two of 10 clinically suspected males were found devoid of FMR-1 expression and accompanied with hypermethylation of the CpG island and CGG trinucleotide repeat expansion.
Zhongguo yi xue ke xue yuan xue bao. Acta Academiae Medicinae Sinicae 01/1996; 17(6):407-11.