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Evaluation of pathogenicity of WT1 intron variants by in vitro splicing analysis.

BACKGROUND: Wilms tumor 1 (WT1; NM_024426) causes Denys-Drash syndrome, Frasier syndrome, or isolated focal segmental glomerulosclerosis. Several WT1 intron variants are pathogenic; however, the pathogenicity of some variants remains undefined. Whether a candidate variant detected in a patient is pathogenic is very important for determining the therapeutic options for the patient.

METHODS: In this study, we evaluated the pathogenicity of WT1 gene intron variants with undetermined pathogenicity by comparing their splicing patterns with those of the wild-type using an in vitro splicing assay using minigenes. The three variants registered as likely disease-causing genes: Mut1 (c.1017-9 T > C(IVS5)), Mut2 (c.1355-28C > T(IVS8)), Mut3 (c.1447 + 1G > C(IVS9)), were included as subjects along the 34 splicing variants registered in the Human Gene Mutation Database (HGMD)® .

RESULTS: The results showed no significant differences in splicing patterns between Mut1 or Mut2 and the wild-type; however, significant differences were observed in Mut3.

CONCLUSION: We concluded that Mut1 and Mut2 do not possess pathogenicity although they were registered as likely pathogenic, whereas Mut3 exhibits pathogenicity. Our results suggest that the pathogenicity of intronic variants detected in patients should be carefully evaluated.

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