Background: Deletions that encompass 2q31.1 have been proposed as a microdeletion syndrome with common clinical features, including intellectual disability/developmental delay, microcephaly, cleft palate, growth delay, and hand/foot anomalies. In addition, several genes within this region have been proposed as candidates for split hand-foot malformation 5 (SHFM5). Methods: To delineate the genotype-phenotype correlation between deletions of this region, we identified 14 individuals with deletions at 2q31.1 detected by microarray analysis for physical and developmental disabilities. Results: All subjects for whom detailed clinical records were available had neurological deficits of varying degree. Seven subjects with deletions encompassing the HOXD cluster had hand/foot anomalies of varying severity, including syndactyly, brachydactyly, and ectrodactyly. Of 7 subjects with deletions proximal to the HOXD cluster, 5 of which encompassed DLX1/DLX2, none had clinically significant hand/foot anomalies. In contrast to previous reports, the individuals in our study did not display a characteristic gestalt of dysmorphic facial features. Conclusion: The absence of hand/foot anomalies in any of the individuals with deletions of DLX1/DLX2 but not the HOXD cluster supports the hypothesis that haploinsufficiency of the HOXD cluster, rather than DLX1/DLX2, accounts for the skeletal abnormalities in subjects with 2q31.1 microdeletions.
- Limb anomalies