Clinical and genetic epidemiology of Bardet-Biedl syndrome in Newfoundland: A 22-year prospective, population-based, cohort study

Susan J. Moore, Jane S. Green, Yanli Fan, Ashvinder K. Bhogal, Elizabeth Dicks, Bridget A. Fernandez, Mark Stefanelli, Christopher Murphy, Benvon C. Cramer, John C.S. Dean, Philip L. Beales, Elias Nicholas Katsanis, Anne S. Bassett, William S. Davidson, Patrick S. Parfrey*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

169 Scopus citations


Bardet-Biedl syndrome (BBS) and Laurence-Moon syndrome (LMS) have a similar phenotype, which includes retinal dystrophy, obesity, and hypogenitalism. They are differentiated by the presence of spasticity and the absence of poly-dactyly in LMS. The aims of this study were to describe the epidemiology of BBS and LMS, further define the phenotype, and examine genotype-phenotype correlation. The study involved 46 patients (26 males, 20 females) from 26 families, with a median age of 44 years (range 1-68 years). Assessments were performed in 1986, 1993, and 2001 and included neurological assessments, anthropometri measurements, and clinical photographs to assess dysmorphic features. The phenotype was highly variable within and between families. Impaired co-ordination and ataxia occurred in 86% (18/21). Thirty percent (14/46) met criteria for psychiatric illness; other medical problems included cholecystectomy in 37% (17/46) and asthma in 28% (13/46). Dysmorphic features included brachycephaly, large ears, and short, narrow palpebral fissures. There was no apparent correlation of clinical or dysmorphic features with genotype. Two patients were diagnosed clinically as LMS but both had mutations in a BBS gene. The features in this population do not support the notion that BBS and LMS are distinct. The lack of a genotype-phenotype correlation implies that BBS proteins interact and are necessary for the development of many organs.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)352-360
Number of pages9
JournalAmerican Journal of Medical Genetics
Volume132 A
Issue number4
StatePublished - Feb 1 2005


  • Bardet-biedl syndrome
  • Genotype-phenotype correlation
  • Laurence-Moon-Biedl syndrome

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Genetics
  • Genetics(clinical)

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