George E. Houck

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The CGG repeat in the 5' untranslated region of the fragile X mental retardation 1 gene (FMR1) exhibits remarkable instability upon transmission from mothers with premutation alleles. A collaboration of 13 laboratories in eight countries was established to examine four issues concerning FMR1 CGG-repeat instability among females with premutation(More)
OBJECTIVE To develop a rapid, nonradioactive test using the polymerase chain reaction (PCR) capable of detecting full fragile X mutations, premutations, and resolving normal alleles and to apply this to prenatal diagnosis and carrier screening of pregnant women at risk for fragile X carrier status. DESIGN Prenatal and blood sample PCR analysis with(More)
During the past three years, we have conducted fragile X DNA studies for carrier screening and prenatal diagnosis using a previously described PCR protocol that accurately resolves normal FMR1 alleles and premutations and detects most full mutations [Brown et al., JAMA 270:1569-1575, 1996]. A total of 344 pregnant women with a family history of mental(More)
To better define the nature of FMR1 CGG-repeat expansions, changes in allele sizes for 191 families with fragile X and for 33 families with gray-zone repeats (40-60) were analyzed. Expansion of the fragile X chromosome to the full mutation was seen in 13.4% of offspring from premutation mothers with 56-59 repeats, 20.6% of those with 60-69 repeats, 57.8% of(More)
Fragile X affected males have an expansion of a CGG repeat and a hypermethylated CpG island 5' to the FMR-1 gene. Mosaic males with both a premutation and full mutation have been noted among the affected individuals. Such mosaic males are most easily identified by the presence of a methylated restriction fragment characteristic of the full mutation and an(More)
Southern analysis of the FMR1 repeat region has suggested that individuals with the full mutation usually carry a heterogeneous array of FMR1 alleles in somatic tissue that can range from 200 to more than 1,000 repeats. Our studies indicate that this heterogeneity is an artifact generated by ethidium bromide commonly used in Southern analysis. When analyzed(More)
Werner's syndrome and Hutchinson-Gilford progeria syndrome (progeria) are human genetic diseases which may serve as models for the study of premature aging. The basic defects underlying these diseases are unknown. An abnormally high level of urinary hyaluronic acid (HA) excretion has been previously reported in several Werner's and one progeria subject, all(More)