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Synpolydactyly: clinical and molecular advances.

Clinical Genetics 2008 Februrary
Synpolydactyly (SPD) is a rare limb deformity showing a distinctive combination of syndactyly and polydactyly. Of the nine non-syndromic syndactylies, it is clinically and genetically one of the most heterogeneous malformation. SPD families may show clinical features consistent with the Temtamy and McKusick criteria as well as additional phenotypic variants, which vary from case to case. In certain instances, these variants predominate in a given family, while the typical SPD features remain less explicit. We have reviewed all the clinical variants occurring in well-documented SPD families. We conclude that typical SPD features can be delineated from minor clinical variants. Then, we propose to lump all the phenotypic variants, manifesting themselves in SPD families into three categories: (i) typical SPD features, (ii) minor variants, and (iii) unusual phenotypes. Next, we discuss the likely reasons for the occurrence of minor variants and the obvious lack of penetrance in SPD families. Finally, we show that for the SPD phenotype associated with HOXD13 mutations, a straightforward genotype-phenotype correlation is weak. Our lumping and splitting scheme for SPD phenotypic variants could be useful for the understanding of this interesting malformation.

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