Purpose: To investigate the prevalence of biallelic PKD1 and PKD2 variants underlying very early onset (VEO) polycystic kidney disease (PKD) in a large international pediatric cohort referred for clinical indications over a 10-year period (2010–2020). Methods: All samples were tested by Sanger sequencing and multiplex ligation-dependent probe amplification (MLPA) of PKD1 and PKD2 genes and/or a next-generation sequencing panel of 15 additional cystic genes including PKHD1 and HNF1B. Two patients underwent exome or genome sequencing. Results: Likely causative PKD1 or PKD2 variants were detected in 30 infants with PKD-VEO, 16 of whom presented in utero. Twenty-one of 30 (70%) had two variants with biallelic in trans inheritance confirmed in 16/21, 1 infant had biallelic PKD2 variants, and 2 infants had digenic PKD1/PKD2 variants. There was no known family history of ADPKD in 13 families (43%) and a de novo pathogenic variant was confirmed in 6 families (23%). Conclusion: We report a high prevalence of hypomorphic PKD1 variants and likely biallelic disease in infants presenting with PKD-VEO with major implications for reproductive counseling. The diagnostic interpretation and reporting of these variants however remains challenging using current American College of Medical Genetics and Genomics/Association for Molecular Pathology (ACMG/AMP) and Association of Clinical Genetic Science (ACGS) variant classification guidelines in PKD-VEO and other diseases affected by similar variants with incomplete penetrance.
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