All submissions of the EM system will be redirected to Online Manuscript Submission System. Authors are requested to submit articles directly to Online Manuscript Submission System of respective journal.

Johanson-Blizzard syndrome: a report of gender-discordant twins with a novel UBR1 mutation

Author(s): C.R. Quaio, Y.K. Koda, D.R. Bertola, M. Sukalo, M. Zenker and C.A. Kim

Johanson-Blizzard syndrome (JBS) is a rare autosomal recessive disorder resulting from loss-of-function mutations in the UBR1 gene. JBS can be easily recognized by its unique clinical presentation (including exocrine pancreatic insufficiency, hypoplasia/aplasia of the alae nasi, congenital scalp defects, sensorineural hearing loss, growth retardation, psychomotor retardation, and anal and genitourinary anomalies). The objective of this study is to report on the first familial case of gender-discordant twins presenting JBS and a novel mutation in the UBR1 gene. We also review literature describing molecularly confirmed cases of JBS. The female twin developed refractory severe diarrhea after the second month of life and died at the age of 3 months. The male twin also developed diarrhea and failure to thrive after the 3 month of life but improved when nutrition support and pancreatic enzyme replacement was started, and he has survived into adolescence. Both patients presented typical clinical features of JBS. A homozygous nonsense mutation (c.3682C>T; p.Q1228X) in UBR1 was confirmed. Severe presentation of JBS usually involves deleterious (nonsense, frameshift, or splice-site) mutations in the UBR1 gene that are thought to completely abolish the expression of a functional protein product, as in this familial case; however, milder presentation of JBS has occasionally been observed with missense mutations in at least 1 of the 2 copies of UBR1, in which there may be residual activity of the product of this gene. Early diagnosis and adequate treatment are crucial for a favorable outcome.