Genetic Investigation of Consanguineous Pakistani Families Segregating Rare Spinocerebellar Disorders

Saadia Maryam Saadi, Elisa Cali, Lubaba Bintee Khalid, Hammad Yousaf, Ghazala Zafar, Haq Nawaz Khan, Muhammad Sher, Barbara Vona, Uzma Abdullah, Naveed Altaf Malik, Joakim Klar, Stephanie Efthymiou, Niklas Dahl, Henry Houlden, Mathias Toft, Shahid Mahmood Baig, Ambrin Fatima, Zafar Iqbal

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Spinocerebellar disorders are a vast group of rare neurogenetic conditions, generally characterized by overlapping clinical symptoms including progressive cerebellar ataxia, spastic paraparesis, cognitive deficiencies, skeletal/muscular and ocular abnormalities. The objective of the present study is to identify the underlying genetic causes of the rare spinocerebellar disorders in the Pakistani population. Herein, nine consanguineous families presenting different spinocerebellar phenotypes have been investigated using whole exome sequencing. Sanger sequencing was performed for segregation analysis in all the available individuals of each family. The molecular analysis of these families identified six novel pathogenic/likely pathogenic variants; ZFYVE26: c.1093del, SACS: c.1201C>T, BICD2: c.2156A>T, ALS2: c.2171-3T>G, ALS2: c.3145T>A, and B4GALNT1: c.334_335dup, and three already reported pathogenic variants; FA2H: c.159_176del, APTX: c.689T>G, and SETX: c.5308_5311del. The clinical features of all patients in each family are concurrent with the already reported cases. Hence, the current study expands the mutation spectrum of rare spinocerebellar disorders and implies the usefulness of next-generation sequencing in combination with clinical investigation for better diagnosis of these overlapping phenotypes.

Original languageEnglish
Article number1404
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2023


  • ataxia
  • consanguinity
  • neurological disorders
  • spastic paraplegia
  • spinocerebellar


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