Detection and characterization of mosaicism in autosomal dominant polycystic kidney disease

HALT Progression of Polycystic Kidney Disease Group, the ADPKD Modifier Study

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

11 Scopus citations


Autosomal dominant polycystic kidney disease (ADPKD) is an inherited, progressive nephropathy accounting for 4-10% of end stage renal disease worldwide. PKD1 and PKD2 are the most common disease loci, but even accounting for other genetic causes, about 7% of families remain unresolved. Typically, these unsolved cases have relatively mild kidney disease and often have a negative family history. Mosaicism, due to de novo mutation in the early embryo, has rarely been identified by conventional genetic analysis of ADPKD families. Here we screened for mosaicism by employing two next generation sequencing screens, specific analysis of PKD1 and PKD2 employing long-range polymerase chain reaction, or targeted capture of cystogenes. We characterized mosaicism in 20 ADPKD families; the pathogenic variant was transmitted to the next generation in five families and sporadic in 15. The mosaic pathogenic variant was newly discovered by next generation sequencing in 13 families, and these methods precisely quantified the level of mosaicism in all. All of the mosaic cases had PKD1 mutations, 14 were deletions or insertions, and 16 occurred in females. Analysis of kidney size and function showed the mosaic cases had milder disease than a control PKD1 population, but only a few had clearly asymmetric disease. Thus, in a typical ADPKD population, readily detectable mosaicism by next generation sequencing accounts for about 1% of cases, and about 10% of genetically unresolved cases with an uncertain family history. Hence, identification of mosaicism is important to fully characterize ADPKD populations and provides informed prognostic information.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)370-382
Number of pages13
JournalKidney international
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 2020


  • PKD1
  • diagnostics
  • genotype/phenotype correlations
  • mosaicism
  • mutations
  • prognostics

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Nephrology


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