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The majority of deletions of the short arm of chromosome 5 are associated with cri du chat syndrome (CdCS) and patients show phenotypic and cytogenetic variability. To perform a genotype-phenotype correlation, 80 patients from the Italian CdCS Register were analysed. Molecular cytogenetic analysis showed that 62 patients (77.50%) had a 5p terminal deletion characterised by breakpoint intervals ranging from p13 (D5S763) to p15.2 (D5S18). Seven patients (8.75%) had a 5p interstitial deletion, four (5%) a de novo translocation, and three (3.75%) a familial translocation. Of the remaining four patients, three (3.75%) had de novo 5p anomalies involving two rearranged cell lines and one (1.25%) had a 5p deletion originating from a paternal inversion. The origin of the deleted chromosome 5 was paternal in 55 out of 61 patients (90.2%). Genotype-phenotype correlation in 62 patients with terminal deletions highlighted a progressive severity of clinical manifestation and psychomotor retardation related to the size of the deletion. The analysis of seven patients with interstitial deletions and one with a small terminal deletion confirmed the existence of two critical regions, one for dysmorphism and mental retardation in p15.2 and the other for the cat cry in p15.3. Results from one patient permitted the cat cry region to be distally narrowed from D5S13 to D5S731. Furthermore, this study lends support to the hypothesis of a separate region in p15.3 for the speech delay.
Keywords: cri du chat syndrome; 5p deletion; phenotype-genotype correlation; FISH