Exacerbation of X-linked ichthyosis phenotype in a female by inheritance of filaggrin and steroid sulfatase mutations

Raakhee Ramesh, Huijia Chen, Anna Kukula, Emma L. Wakeling, Malcolm H. A. Rustin, W. H. Irwin McLean

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    Background: X-linked ichthyosis (XLI) is a relatively common, recessive condition caused by mutations in the steroid sulfatase (STS) gene. Common loss-of-function mutations in the filaggrin gene (FLG) cause ichthyosis vulgaris and predispose individuals to atopic eczema. Objective: To test the hypothesis that co-inheritance of FLG mutations can act as a genetic modifier in XLI.

    Methods: An unusually severe XLI phenotype in addition to eczema and mild childhood asthma was investigated in a female Indian patient by fluorescent in situ hybridization (FISH) for the common STS gene deletion. Direct sequencing of the entire FLG gene was also performed.

    Results: FISH analysis revealed that the proband was homozygous for the common STS genomic deletion mutation. Further investigation revealed a frame-shift mutation 3672del4 in the gene encoding filaggrin (FLG), leading to premature termination of profilaggrin translation. Interestingly, her father, who had a very typical mild presentation of XLI, did not carry this FLG mutation in addition to his STS deletion. Her mother was a heterozygous carrier of the FLG mutation and consistent with this, had mild symptoms of ichthyosis vulgaris: she was also a heterozygous carrier of the STS deletion.

    Conclusion: This is the second reported case of the modifying effects of FLG null alleles on XLI and strengthens the hypothesis that filaggrin defects can synergize with STS deficiency to exacerbate the ichthyosis phenotype. (C) 2011 Japanese Society for Investigative Dermatology. Published by Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)159-162
    Number of pages4
    JournalJournal of Dermatological Science
    Issue number3
    Publication statusPublished - Dec 2011


    • Genodermatosis
    • Genetic modifier
    • Skin barrier
    • Eczema
    • Ichthyosis
    • GENE


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