American Journal of Human Genetics vol:81 issue:1 pages:181-187
Recently, large-scale benign copy-number variations (CNVs)--encompassing over 12% of the genome and containing genes considered to be dosage tolerant for human development--were uncovered in the human population. Here we present a family with a novel autosomal-dominantly inherited syndrome characterized by microtia, eye coloboma, and imperforation of the nasolacrimal duct. This phenotype is linked to a cytogenetically visible alteration at 4pter consisting of five copies of a copy-number-variable region, encompassing a low-copy repeat (LCR)-rich sequence. We demonstrate that the approximately 750 kb amplicon occurs in exact tandem copies. This is the first example of an amplified CNV associated with a Mendelian disorder, a discovery that implies that genome screens for genetic disorders should include the analysis of so-called benign CNVs and LCRs.