BCL11A intellectual developmental disorder: defining the clinical spectrum and genotype-phenotype correlations

Cristina Dias*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Working paper/PreprintPreprint


Purpose Heterozygous variants in BCL11A underlie an intellectual developmental disorder with persistence of fetal hemoglobin (BCL11A-IDD, a.k.a. Dias-Logan syndrome). We sought to delineate the genotypic and phenotypic spectrum of BCL11A-IDD.

Methods We performed an in-depth analysis of 42 patients with BCL11A-IDD ascertained through a collaborative network of clinical and research colleagues. We also reviewed 33 additional affected individuals previously reported in the literature or available through public repositories with clinical information.

Results Molecular and clinical data analysis of 75 patients with BCL11A-IDD identified 60 unique variants (30 frameshift, 7 missense, 6 splice-site, 17 stop-gain) and 8 unique CNVs (microdeletions involving BCL11A only). We redefined the most frequent manifestations of the condition: intellectual disability, hypotonia, behavioral abnormalities, postnatal microcephaly and autism spectrum disorder. Two thirds of patients have brain MRI abnormalities, and we identified a recurrent posterior fossa phenotype of vermian hypoplasia and/or small brainstem. Truncating BCL11A variants, particularly those affecting the long (BCL11A-L) and extra-long (-XL) isoforms, sparing the short (-S) isoform, were associated with increased severity.

Conclusions We expand the clinical delineation of BCL11A-IDD and identify a potential isoform-specific genotype-phenotype correlation. We show that BCL11A-IDD is associated with posterior fossa anomalies and highlight the differences between BCL11A-IDD and 2p16.1p15 microdeletion syndrome.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 6 Sept 2021


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