Table of Contents
ISRN Neurology
Volume 2013, Article ID 908317, 7 pages
Clinical Study

A Streamlined Protocol for Molecular Testing of the DMD Gene within a Diagnostic Laboratory: A Combination of Array Comparative Genomic Hybridization and Bidirectional Sequence Analysis

1Diagnostic Genetics, LabPLUS, Auckland City Hospital, P.O. Box 110031, Auckland 1148, New Zealand
2School of Biological Sciences, University of Auckland, Private Bag 92019, Auckland 1142, New Zealand

Received 13 December 2012; Accepted 30 December 2012

Academic Editors: N. Bresolin, G. Meco, and F. G. Wouterlood

Copyright © 2013 Renate Marquis-Nicholson et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Purpose. The aim of this study was to develop a streamlined mutation screening protocol for the DMD gene in order to confirm a clinical diagnosis of Duchenne or Becker muscular dystrophy in affected males and to clarify the carrier status of female family members. Methods. Sequence analysis and array comparative genomic hybridization (aCGH) were used to identify mutations in the dystrophin DMD gene. We analysed genomic DNA from six individuals with a range of previously characterised mutations and from eight individuals who had not previously undergone any form of molecular analysis. Results. We successfully identified the known mutations in all six patients. A molecular diagnosis was also made in three of the four patients with a clinical diagnosis who had not undergone prior genetic screening, and testing for familial mutations was successfully completed for the remaining four patients. Conclusion. The mutation screening protocol described here meets best practice guidelines for molecular testing of the DMD gene in a diagnostic laboratory. The aCGH method is a superior alternative to more conventional assays such as multiplex ligation-dependent probe amplification (MLPA). The combination of aCGH and sequence analysis will detect mutations in 98% of patients with the Duchenne or Becker muscular dystrophy.