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Identification and verification of a pathogenic MLH1 mutation c.1145dupA in a Lynch syndrome family

Huang Feifei ()
Tao Xiang ()
Jiang Wei ()
Chen Jun ()
Feng Weiwei ()


Lynch syndrome (LS), an autosomal-dominant disorder with an increased risk of predominantly colorectal and endometrial cancers, is caused by germ-line mutations in mismatch repair genes. The identification of germ-line mutations that predispose to cancer is important to further our understanding of tumorigenesis, guide patient management and inform the best practice for healthcare. A 45-year-old woman with atypical endometrial hyperplasia who suffered colon cancer at the age of 30 years underwent hysterectomy and genetic counseling. Pedigree analysis revealed her family fulfilling the Amsterdam I criteria. Next-generation sequencing was offered to the patient. A mutation in the MLH1 gene, c.1145dupA, was identified and verified by Sanger sequencing. In addition, her nine family members were tested for the mutation. Two were affected (colon cancer at the age of 43 years and 45 years) and one healthy relative carried the same mutation in the MLH1 gene. The mutation resulted in a frame-shift (p.Met383Aspfs*12) located in exon12, as well as a polypeptide truncation of 393 amino acids by the formation of a premature stop codon. An immunohistochemistry analysis of endometrial hyperplasia tissues revealed defects in MLH1 and PMS2 protein expression in the patient. Based on the 2015 American College of Medical Genetics and Genomics (ACMG) guideline, we report this MLH1 c.1145dupA variation to be a pathogenic mutation that contributes to a strongly increased cancer risk in this LS family. Proper screening suggestions were offered to the three affected patients and the healthy carrier. To the best of our knowledge, this germ-line mutation of MLH1 was previously submitted to the Leiden Open Variation Database (LOVD) database, but no comprehensive evidence or supporting observations were reported previously in the literature. The present report found a single nucleotide insertion in exon12 of the MLH1 gene, which can be considered causative of Lynch phenotype. Moreover, identification of individuals at risk for hereditary syndromes is important, as they can benefit from genetic counseling and increased surveillance.


Lynch syndrome; MLH1 mutation; atypical endometrial hyperplasia; colon cancer

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