The t(11;22) (q23;q11) translocation is the most frequently identified familial reciprocal translocation in humans. In translocation carriers, 3:1 meiotic segregation with tertiary trisomy can occur resulting in abnormal progeny with the der(22) as the supernumary chromosome. Affected children have a distinct phenotype with multiple anomalies and severe mental retardation. We have identified a child with developmental delay and multiple anomalies consistent with the der(22) phenotype. Cytogenetic analysis showed an abnormal chromosome complement of 47,XX,+der(22)t(11;22)(q23; q11) in all 50 cells analysed. FISH analysis using chromosome 11 and 22 painting probes showed a pattern consistent with a reciprocal translocation of the distal bands 11q23 and 22q11 respectively. Parental karyotypes were normal. RFLP analysis of locus D22S43, which maps above the t(11;22) breakpoint, showed that the der(22) was paternal in origin and indicated that the normal chromosomes 22 were the probable result of maternal heterodisomy. RFLP analysis of locus D22S94, which maps below the t(11;22) breakpoint, also suggested that both normal chromosomes 22 of the child represented the two maternal homologues. Non-paternity was excluded through the analysis of 10 microsatellite markers distributed on 10 different chromosomes and three VNTRs on three different chromosomes. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first reported case of a patient with an abnormal karyotype resulting from a de novo translocation in the paternal germline with probable unbalanced adjacent 1 segregation and maternal non-disjunction of chromosome 22 in meiosis I.
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