Marzo Aprile 2016 - ADPKD corner

Genetics and genetic counseling


Autosomal Dominant Polycystic Kidney Disease (ADPKD) is the most frequent genetic disease, characterized by progressive development of bilateral renal cysts. Two causative genes have been identified: PKD1 and PKD2. ADPKD phenotype is highly variable. Typically, ADPKD is an adult onset disease. However, occasionally, ADPKD manifests as very early onset disease. The phenotypic variability of ADPKD can be explained at three genetic levels: genic, allelic and gene modifier effects. Recent advances in molecular screening for PKD gene mutations and the introduction of the new next generation sequencing (NGS)- based genotyping approach have generated considerable improvement regarding the knowledge of genetic basis of ADPKD.

The purpose of this article is to provide a comprehensive review of the genetics of ADPKD, focusing on new insights in genotype-phenotype correlation and exploring novel clinical approach to genetic testing. Evaluation of these new genetic information requires a multidisciplinary approach involving a nephrologist and a clinical geneticist.

Key words: PKD, autosomal dominant polycystic kidney disease, ciliopathy, genetic counseling, genetic tests, genotype-phenotype correlation

Full text of the article is available in Italian.