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    The Undiagnosed Disease Program in South Africa (UDP) sought to prospectively evaluate the clinical utility of exome sequencing (ES) in a phenotypically diverse, multi-ethnic cohort of South African patients with suspected rare genetic disorders. ES was undertaken in 100 sequential patients (93 singletons, 3 duos, and 4 trios) recruited to the UDP at Stellenbosch University. The data were analyzed through two separate bioinformatics pipelines (EVIDENCE from 3 billion and our in-house pipeline). A definitive diagnosis could be reached in 51% (51/100) patients, with 46% (46/100) patients having either pathogenic or likely pathogenic single-nucleotide variants/indels (SNVs/indels), and 5 patients with likely-pathogenic copy number variants (CNVs) (5/100). The CNVs were subsequently confirmed on microarray or MLPA analysis. Detailed phenotyping and HPO terms enabled analysis and variant identification. Twenty-five novel variants in 22 genes are reported here. We provide data from the first year of this UDP and show that even amongst mainly singletons from an understudied, diverse African population, ES is a valuable diagnostic tool, especially if it includes CNV analysis. The remaining undiagnosed patients present a unique opportunity for further research and novel gene discovery. © 2022 The Authors. American Journal of Medical Genetics Part A published by Wiley Periodicals LLC.


    Shahida Moosa, Kimberly Christine Coetzer, Eugene Lee, Go Hun Seo. Undiagnosed disease program in South Africa: Results from first 100 exomes. American journal of medical genetics. Part A. 2022 Sep;188(9):2684-2692

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    PMID: 35616356

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