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    We report a case of a somatic overgrowth syndrome diagnosed at forensic autopsy with the aid of next generation sequencing as Proteus syndrome. Somatic overgrowth syndromes result from spontaneous somatic mutations that arise early in development and display a mosaic pattern of expression in patient tissues. Due to the temporal and anatomic heterogeneity of these syndromes, phenotypes vary widely, resulting in clinical overlap. Furthermore, the variable ratio of mutated to nonmutated cells in patient tissue can result in low-level mutations that could be missed using Sanger sequencing. Due to these factors, recent literature points to next generation sequencing (NGS) as an adjunct to diagnosis of these rare entities. A male in his fourth decade of life presented to our forensic autopsy service with physical features suggestive of a somatic overgrowth syndrome. Due to the paucity of clinical information accompanying the individual, a definitive diagnosis based on physical characteristics, alone, was not possible. Next generation sequencing of affected formalin-fixed and paraffin-embedded brain tissue confirmed the presence of the variant in AKT1 (c.49G>A, p.Glu17Lys, in 14.13% of reads) found in Proteus syndrome. To our knowledge, this is the first report of the mosaic variant of AKT1 detected in brain tissue and the first reported case of a postmortem diagnosis of Proteus syndrome with the aid of NGS. We conclude that NGS can be used as an adjunctive method to support a specific diagnosis among the somatic overgrowth syndromes postmortem in the absence of sufficient clinical history. © The Author(s) 2022.


    Tiffany G Baker, William B Glen, Robert C Wilson, Nicholas I Batalis, Daynna J Wolff, Cynthia T Welsh. Postmortem Diagnosis of the Proteus Syndrome by Next Generation Sequencing of Affected Brain Tissue. Academic forensic pathology. 2022 Jun;12(2):52-57

    PMID: 35799996

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