Duplication and deletion of the 1.4-Mb region in 17p12 that is delimited by two 24-kb low copy number repeats (CMT1A-REPs) represent frequent genomic rearrangements resulting in two common inherited peripheral neuropathies, Charcot-Marie-Tooth disease type 1A (CMT1A) and hereditary neuropathy with liability to pressure palsy (HNPP). CMT1A and HNPP exemplify a paradigm for genomic disorders wherein unique genome architectural features result in susceptibility to DNA rearrangements that cause disease. A gene within the 1.4-Mb region, PMP22, is responsible for these disorders through a gene-dosage effect in the heterozygous duplication or deletion. However, the genomic structure of the 1.4-Mb region, including other genes contained within the rearranged genomic segment, remains essentially uncharacterized. To delineate genomic structural features, investigate higher-order genomic architecture, and identify genes in this region, we constructed PAC and BAC contigs and determined the complete nucleotide sequence. This CMT1A/HNPP genomic segment contains 1,421,129 bp of DNA. A low copy number repeat (LCR) was identified, with one copy inside and two copies outside of the 1.4-Mb region. Comparison between physical and genetic maps revealed a striking difference in recombination rates between the sexes with a lower recombination frequency in males (0.67 cM/Mb) versus females (5.5 cM/Mb). Hypothetically, this low recombination frequency in males may enable a chromosomal misalignment at proximal and distal CMT1A-REPs and promote unequal crossing over, which occurs 10 times more frequently in male meiosis. In addition to three previously described genes, five new genes (TEKT3, HS3ST3B1, NPD008/CGI-148, CDRT1, and CDRT15) and 13 predicted genes were identified. Most of these predicted genes are expressed only in embryonic stages. Analyses of the genomic region adjacent to proximal CMT1A-REP indicated an evolutionary mechanism for the formation of proximal CMT1A-REP and the creation of novel genes by DNA rearrangement during primate speciation.
ASJC Scopus subject areas