Advertisement

Expanding the scope of noninvasive prenatal testing: detection of fetal microdeletion syndromes

Open AccessPublished:December 02, 2014DOI:https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ajog.2014.11.041

      Objective

      The purpose of this study was to estimate the performance of a single-nucleotide polymorphism (SNP)–based noninvasive prenatal test for 5 microdeletion syndromes.

      Study Design

      Four hundred sixty-nine samples (358 plasma samples from pregnant women, 111 artificial plasma mixtures) were amplified with the use of a massively multiplexed polymerase chain reaction, sequenced, and analyzed with the use of the Next-generation Aneuploidy Test Using SNPs algorithm for the presence or absence of deletions of 22q11.2, 1p36, distal 5p, and the Prader-Willi/Angelman region.

      Results

      Detection rates were 97.8% for a 22q11.2 deletion (45/46) and 100% for Prader-Willi (15/15), Angelman (21/21), 1p36 deletion (1/1), and cri-du-chat syndromes (24/24). False-positive rates were 0.76% for 22q11.2 deletion syndrome (3/397) and 0.24% for cri-du-chat syndrome (1/419). No false positives occurred for Prader-Willi (0/428), Angelman (0/442), or 1p36 deletion syndromes (0/422).

      Conclusion

      SNP-based noninvasive prenatal microdeletion screening is highly accurate. Because clinically relevant microdeletions and duplications occur in >1% of pregnancies, regardless of maternal age, noninvasive screening for the general pregnant population should be considered.

      Key words

      The discovery in the maternal circulation of cell-free DNA (cfDNA) of fetal/placental origin has led to a revolution in prenatal screening.
      • Lo Y.M.
      • Corbetta N.
      • Chamberlain P.F.
      • et al.
      Presence of fetal DNA in maternal plasma and serum.
      • Kazakov V.I.
      • Bozhkov V.M.
      • Linde V.A.
      • Repina M.A.
      • Mikhailov V.M.
      [Extracellular DNA in the blood of pregnant women].
      • Chitty L.S.
      • Bianchi D.W.
      Noninvasive prenatal testing: the paradigm is shifting rapidly.
      Common whole-chromosome fetal aneuploidies can now be detected with high sensitivity and specificity
      • Benn P.
      • Cuckle H.
      • Pergament E.
      Non-invasive prenatal testing for aneuploidy: current status and future prospects.
      and have facilitated a significant reduction in the number of invasive diagnostic procedures that have been performed. In the United States, 2 noninvasive prenatal testing (NIPT) approaches have been commercialized: quantitative “counting” that uses massive or targeted parallel sequencing
      • Palomaki G.E.
      • Kloza E.M.
      • Lambert-Messerlian G.M.
      • et al.
      DNA sequencing of maternal plasma to detect Down syndrome: an international clinical validation study.
      • Sparks A.B.
      • Struble C.A.
      • Wang E.T.
      • Song K.
      • Oliphant A.
      Noninvasive prenatal detection and selective analysis of cell-free DNA obtained from maternal blood: evaluation for trisomy 21 and trisomy 18.
      • Bianchi D.W.
      • Platt L.D.
      • Goldberg J.D.
      • Abuhamad A.Z.
      • Sehnert A.J.
      • Rava R.P.
      Genome-wide fetal aneuploidy detection by maternal plasma DNA sequencing.
      and a single-nucleotide polymorphism (SNP)–based approach that relies on the identification of maternal and fetal allele distributions.
      • Levy B.
      • Norwitz E.
      Non-invasive prenatal aneuploidy testing: technologies and clinical implication.
      • Nicolaides K.H.
      • Syngelaki A.
      • Gil M.
      • Atanasova V.
      • Markova D.
      Validation of targeted sequencing of single-nucleotide polymorphisms for non-invasive prenatal detection of aneuploidy of chromosomes 13, 18, 21, X, and Y.
      • Pergament E.
      • Cuckle H.
      • Zimmermann B.
      • et al.
      Single-nucleotide polymorphism-based non-invasive prenatal testing in a high- and low-risk cohort.
      • Nicolaides K.
      • Syngelaki A.
      • Gil M.
      • Quezada M.
      • Zinevich Y.
      Prenatal detection of fetal triploidy from cell-free DNA testing in maternal blood.
      • Samango-Sprouse C.
      • Banjevic M.
      • Ryan A.
      • et al.
      SNP-based non-invasive prenatal testing detects sex chromosome aneuploidies with high accuracy.
      • Hall M.P.
      • Hill M.
      • Zimmermann P.B.
      • et al.
      Non-invasive prenatal detection of trisomy 13 using a single nucleotide polymorphism- and informatics-based approach.
      Both methods can detect pregnancies at high risk for trisomy 21 (Down syndrome), trisomy 18, trisomy 13, and sex chromosome abnormalities. The SNP-based approach is also able to detect triploidy.
      • Nicolaides K.H.
      • Syngelaki A.
      • Gil M.
      • Atanasova V.
      • Markova D.
      Validation of targeted sequencing of single-nucleotide polymorphisms for non-invasive prenatal detection of aneuploidy of chromosomes 13, 18, 21, X, and Y.
      • Nicolaides K.
      • Syngelaki A.
      • Gil M.
      • Quezada M.
      • Zinevich Y.
      Prenatal detection of fetal triploidy from cell-free DNA testing in maternal blood.
      Subchromosomal abnormalities (microdeletions and duplications) may result in physical and/or intellectual impairments that can be more severe than whole chromosome abnormalities. Unlike the risks of aneuploidy that is associated with nondisjunction, the incidence of subchromosomal copy number variations (CNVs) is independent of maternal age. Clinically relevant microdeletions and duplications occur in 1-1.7% of all structurally normal pregnancies.
      • Wapner R.J.
      • Martin C.L.
      • Levy B.
      • et al.
      Chromosomal microarray versus karyotyping for prenatal diagnosis.
      In younger women, the risk for a clinically significant deletion exceeds the risk for Down syndrome. Because some infants with subchromosomal abnormalities may benefit from early therapeutic intervention,
      • Council N.R.
      Educating children with autism.
      • Handleman J.S.
      • Harris S.C.
      Preschool education programs for children with autism.
      • Cheung E.N.M.
      • George S.R.
      • Costain G.A.
      • et al.
      Prevalence of hypocalcemia and its associated features in 22q11.2 deletion syndrome.
      prenatal detection is important for optimal management. In support of this, it is recommended that chromosome microarray analysis be offered to all women who undergo invasive diagnostic testing.
      American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists
      The use of chromosomal microarray analysis in prenatal diagnosis.
      However, with the introduction of NIPT for aneuploidy screening, many women who previously would have had invasive testing are choosing to avoid these procedures because of the small risk of pregnancy loss.
      • Chitty L.S.
      • Bianchi D.W.
      Noninvasive prenatal testing: the paradigm is shifting rapidly.
      American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists
      Invasive prenatal testing for aneuploidy. ACOG Practice Bulletin no. 88.
      Submicroscopic genomic alterations are harder to detect noninvasively because of their small size. A small proportion may be identified incidentally through traditional serum and ultrasound screening, but these tests were not designed to screen for these anomalies. The introduction of a highly accurate noninvasive prenatal screening test that would identify women who are at high risk for microdeletions or duplications therefore would be useful. Recently, proof-of-principle studies that used shotgun or whole-genome sequencing reported the detection of subchromosomal microdeletions and microduplications.
      • Jensen T.J.
      • Dzakula Z.
      • Deciu C.
      • van den Boom D.
      • Ehrich M.
      Detection of microdeletion 22q11.2 in a fetus by next-generation sequencing of maternal plasma.
      • Srinivasan A.
      • Bianchi D.W.
      • Huang H.
      • Sehnert A.J.
      • Rava R.P.
      Noninvasive detection of fetal subchromosome abnormalities via deep sequencing of maternal plasma.
      • Kitzman J.O.
      • Snyder M.W.
      • Ventura M.
      • et al.
      Noninvasive whole-genome sequencing of a human fetus.
      • Fan H.C.
      • Gu W.
      • Wang J.
      • Blumenfeld Y.J.
      • El-Sayed Y.Y.
      • Quake S.R.
      Non-invasive prenatal measurement of the fetal genome.
      However, these approaches were limited by the requirement for exceptionally high sequence reads, and interpretation was complicated by the identification of variants of unknown clinical significance. Here, we used a targeted SNP-based approach
      • Nicolaides K.H.
      • Syngelaki A.
      • Gil M.
      • Atanasova V.
      • Markova D.
      Validation of targeted sequencing of single-nucleotide polymorphisms for non-invasive prenatal detection of aneuploidy of chromosomes 13, 18, 21, X, and Y.
      • Pergament E.
      • Cuckle H.
      • Zimmermann B.
      • et al.
      Single-nucleotide polymorphism-based non-invasive prenatal testing in a high- and low-risk cohort.
      • Nicolaides K.
      • Syngelaki A.
      • Gil M.
      • Quezada M.
      • Zinevich Y.
      Prenatal detection of fetal triploidy from cell-free DNA testing in maternal blood.
      • Samango-Sprouse C.
      • Banjevic M.
      • Ryan A.
      • et al.
      SNP-based non-invasive prenatal testing detects sex chromosome aneuploidies with high accuracy.
      • Hall M.P.
      • Hill M.
      • Zimmermann P.B.
      • et al.
      Non-invasive prenatal detection of trisomy 13 using a single nucleotide polymorphism- and informatics-based approach.
      to detect the larger deletions that underlie 5 microdeletion syndromes with clinically severe phenotypes.

      Materials and Methods

      Initial validation studies were performed with genomic DNA that had been isolated from 40 characterized cell lines to demonstrate that the SNP-targeted assay was capable of detecting the presence or absence of 22q11.2, 1p36, cri-du-chat, Prader-Willi, and Angelman deletions. These cell lines included 7 with 22q11.2 deletions, 19 with 5p deletions (cri-du-chat syndrome), 10 with 15q11-13 deletions (3 with Angelman syndrome and 7 with Prader-Willi syndrome), and 4 with no deletions.
      After validation of the SNP-targeted assay, a cohort of 469 test samples was evaluated (Table 1). This included 6 maternal plasma samples from pregnant women in which the fetus had a microdeletion (3 with 22q11.2 deletions, 2 with 5p deletions, and 1 with a 1p36 deletion), 352 unaffected pregnancy plasmas, and 111 artificial DNA mixtures (PlasmArts). Seventy-three of the PlasmArts were generated from DNA derived from 2 individuals with 22q11.2 deletions, 1 with a 5p deletion, and one unaffected child, each of which was diluted into matched maternal DNA. Thirty-eight samples were generated from genomic DNA isolated from two 15q-cell lines (1 Angelman, and 1 Prader-Willi) and the corresponding maternal cell lines. All cell lines were obtained from the Coriell Cell Repository (Camden, NJ). Patients who provided samples were enrolled at prenatal and postnatal care centers under institutional review board–approved protocols (Western Institutional Review Board protocol number: 12-014-NPT), pursuant to local regulations.
      Table 1Samples used in the main cohort along with the sample deletion sizes
      SamplesSample deletion sizen
      Pregnancy samples
       DiGeorge deletionarr[hg18] 22q11.21(17,010,000-20,130,000)x11
       DiGeorge deletionarr[hg18] 22q11.21(17,020,000-20,130,000)x11
       DiGeorge deletion46,XX.nuc ish(HIRAx1)1
       Cri-du-chat deletion46,XX,del(5)(p15.1p15.3)1
       Cri-du-chat deletion46,XY,del(5)(p14.2)1
       1p36 deletion46,XY,del(1)(p36.1)1
       46,XX and 46,XY352
      PlasmArt samples: born triads
       DiGeorge deletionarr[hg18] 22q11.2(17,270,000- 19,810,000)x122
       DiGeorge deletionarr[hg18] 22q11.2(16,950,000-20,250,000)x122
       Cri-du-chat deletionarr[hg18] 5p15.33p14.1(91,100-29,500,000)x122
       46,XX and 46,XY7
      PlasmArt samples: cell lines
       Prader-Willi deletionarr[hg18] 15q11.2q13.1(20,310,000-27,130,000)x116
       Angelman deletionarr[hg18] 15q11.2q13.1(20,310,000-27,220,000)x122
      Wapner. Noninvasive screening for fetal microdeletion syndromes. Am J Obstet Gynecol 2015.
      Genomic DNA for PlasmArt mixtures was isolated from the buffy coats from mother and child pairs or from paired mother and child cell lines. These DNA preparations were cleaved into internucleosomal fragments of roughly 150 base pairs and multiples thereof with the use of a proprietary reaction that included micrococcal nuclease (New England Biolabs, Ipswich, MA).
      • Spetman B.L.
      • Leuking S.
      • Roberts B.
      • Dennis J.
      Microarray mapping of nucleosome position.
      • Axel R.
      Cleavage of DNA in nuclei and chromatin with staphylococcal nuclease.
      Because fetal cfDNA exists in vivo mainly as mononucleosomal fragments,
      • Chan K.C.A.
      • Zhang J.
      • Hui A.B.Y.
      • et al.
      Size distributions of maternal and fetal DNA in maternal plasma.
      child DNA of approximately 150 base pairs was isolated using Solid Phase Reversible Immobilization beads (Agencourt Biosciences, Beverly, MA). Maternal genomic DNA was not size purified because maternal cfDNA exists as a nucleosomal ladder.
      • Chan K.C.A.
      • Zhang J.
      • Hui A.B.Y.
      • et al.
      Size distributions of maternal and fetal DNA in maternal plasma.
      Child DNA was titrated into the corresponding maternal DNA to achieve artificial mixtures with “fetal” fractions that ranged from 3.8-33%, which was a similar distribution to that observed in maternal plasma clinical samples. The “fetal” fraction distribution of these samples is shown in Figure 1; for comparison, the fetal fraction distribution from 19,910 consecutive maternal plasma samples from women at 10-16 weeks of gestation is also shown.
      Figure thumbnail gr1
      Figure 1Fetal fraction distribution
      Distribution of the 111 PlasmArt samples and of 19,910 consecutive commercial samples from 10-16 weeks’ gestation.
      Wapner. Noninvasive screening for fetal microdeletion syndromes. Am J Obstet Gynecol 2015.
      All samples, including maternal and (when available) paternal samples,
      • Nicolaides K.H.
      • Syngelaki A.
      • Gil M.
      • Atanasova V.
      • Markova D.
      Validation of targeted sequencing of single-nucleotide polymorphisms for non-invasive prenatal detection of aneuploidy of chromosomes 13, 18, 21, X, and Y.
      • Pergament E.
      • Cuckle H.
      • Zimmermann B.
      • et al.
      Single-nucleotide polymorphism-based non-invasive prenatal testing in a high- and low-risk cohort.
      • Nicolaides K.
      • Syngelaki A.
      • Gil M.
      • Quezada M.
      • Zinevich Y.
      Prenatal detection of fetal triploidy from cell-free DNA testing in maternal blood.
      • Samango-Sprouse C.
      • Banjevic M.
      • Ryan A.
      • et al.
      SNP-based non-invasive prenatal testing detects sex chromosome aneuploidies with high accuracy.
      • Hall M.P.
      • Hill M.
      • Zimmermann P.B.
      • et al.
      Non-invasive prenatal detection of trisomy 13 using a single nucleotide polymorphism- and informatics-based approach.
      underwent targeted multiplex polymerase chain reaction and were sequenced; the data were analyzed with the Next-Generation Aneuploidy Test Using SNPs (NATUS) algorithm as described previously,
      • Nicolaides K.H.
      • Syngelaki A.
      • Gil M.
      • Atanasova V.
      • Markova D.
      Validation of targeted sequencing of single-nucleotide polymorphisms for non-invasive prenatal detection of aneuploidy of chromosomes 13, 18, 21, X, and Y.
      • Pergament E.
      • Cuckle H.
      • Zimmermann B.
      • et al.
      Single-nucleotide polymorphism-based non-invasive prenatal testing in a high- and low-risk cohort.
      • Nicolaides K.
      • Syngelaki A.
      • Gil M.
      • Quezada M.
      • Zinevich Y.
      Prenatal detection of fetal triploidy from cell-free DNA testing in maternal blood.
      • Samango-Sprouse C.
      • Banjevic M.
      • Ryan A.
      • et al.
      SNP-based non-invasive prenatal testing detects sex chromosome aneuploidies with high accuracy.
      • Hall M.P.
      • Hill M.
      • Zimmermann P.B.
      • et al.
      Non-invasive prenatal detection of trisomy 13 using a single nucleotide polymorphism- and informatics-based approach.
      with the following alterations: a unique set of primers was designed to amplify 4128 SNPs in the regions-of-interest (672 SNPs targeting 2.91 Mb in the 22q11.2 region and 1152 SNPs in each of the other regions, targeting 5.85 Mb in the Prader-Willi/Angelman region, 10.0 Mb in the 1p36 region, and 20.0 Mb in the cri-du-chat region). The assay was not validated for the smaller, less-frequent deletions that are associated with these disorders because positive control samples were not available. The estimated relative prevalence of the targeted deletions in the 22q11.2, Prader-Willi/Angelman, 1p36, and cri-du-chat regions were 87%, 28%, 60%, and 65%, respectively. Samples were analyzed with the NATUS algorithm as previously described,
      • Nicolaides K.H.
      • Syngelaki A.
      • Gil M.
      • Atanasova V.
      • Markova D.
      Validation of targeted sequencing of single-nucleotide polymorphisms for non-invasive prenatal detection of aneuploidy of chromosomes 13, 18, 21, X, and Y.
      • Pergament E.
      • Cuckle H.
      • Zimmermann B.
      • et al.
      Single-nucleotide polymorphism-based non-invasive prenatal testing in a high- and low-risk cohort.
      • Nicolaides K.
      • Syngelaki A.
      • Gil M.
      • Quezada M.
      • Zinevich Y.
      Prenatal detection of fetal triploidy from cell-free DNA testing in maternal blood.
      • Samango-Sprouse C.
      • Banjevic M.
      • Ryan A.
      • et al.
      SNP-based non-invasive prenatal testing detects sex chromosome aneuploidies with high accuracy.
      • Hall M.P.
      • Hill M.
      • Zimmermann P.B.
      • et al.
      Non-invasive prenatal detection of trisomy 13 using a single nucleotide polymorphism- and informatics-based approach.
      and all samples that passed quality control (QC) were included in this cohort. The NATUS algorithm was then used to predict fetal copy number (1, 2, or ≥3 copies) for the microdeletion regions-of-interest. The algorithm was blinded to sample status, and all calls were reported as predicted by the algorithm without subjective modification by laboratory personnel.

      Results

      Algorithm validation using genomic samples

      Validation experiments confirmed that the SNP-based technology and the microdeletion-specific primer pools could detect the microdeletions accurately in the 5 syndromes described. Heterozygous SNPs clearly were absent in all affected regions and were present in all unaffected regions; Figure 2 shows the graphic representations of the sequencing data that were obtained from genomic DNA that had been isolated from one cell line with a 22q11.2 deletion. The plots are described in detail in the legend of Figure 2. Briefly, the absence of the central green cluster in the 22q11.2 (DiGeorge) region indicated a lack of heterozygous SNPs, from which it is possible to infer a deletion of one copy of the DNA in this region.
      Figure thumbnail gr2
      Figure 2Graphic representation of sequencing data
      Data were obtained from analysis of genomic DNA isolated from cells with the 22q11.2 deletion, interrogated for A, the 1p36 deletion, B, the cri-du-chat deletion, C, the Prader-Willi/Angelman deletion, and D, the 22q11.2 deletion. Note that this is one way of visualizing the data and is not how the algorithm makes copy number calls. For all plots, single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) are assumed to be dimorphic and are labeled as A or B. The fraction of A allele reads (y-axis) is plotted against the position of each SNP along the chromosome of interest (x-axis); each spot corresponds to a single SNP. Spots are colored according to genotype: AA is red; AB is green, and BB is blue. Genotypes are indicated to the right of the plots; A-C, SNP plots reveal 2 copies in the 1p36, cri-du-chat, and Prader-Willi/Angelman regions. Homozygous alleles (AA and BB) are associated tightly with the plot’s upper and lower limits, respectively. Heterozygous alleles (AB) cluster near the center of the plot, which indicates 2 copies of the chromosome in the interrogated regions. D, SNP plots reveal 1 copy in the 22q11.2 region. The lack of heterozygous alleles (AB) identifies 1 copy of the 22q11.2 region; A and B alleles are associated tightly with the plot’s upper and lower limits, respectively.
      Wapner. Noninvasive screening for fetal microdeletion syndromes. Am J Obstet Gynecol 2015.

      Pregnancy plasma cohort

      Of the 358 pregnancy samples, 335 samples passed QC metrics. The algorithm did not return a result for 23 of 358 of the samples (6.4%); all of these were unaffected. The detection rates and false-positive rates for those samples that passed QC are listed in Table 2. Of the 6 affected pregnancy plasmas, 1 false negative was reported (22q11.2). Of the 335 unaffected pregnancy plasmas that passed QC, 4 false positives were reported (3 for the 22q11.2 deletion and 1 for the deletion associated with cri-du-chat syndrome). Figure 3 shows a sample with a fetal fraction of 33% having a cri-du-chat deletion on the maternally inherited chromosome 5. In this sample, 2 green clusters in the cri-du-chat region indicate a deletion; 3 green clusters in the 1p36, Prader-Willi/Angelman, and 22q11.2 regions indicate that 2 copies of the fetal chromosomes are present. The patterns are described in detail in the legend of Figure 2.
      Table 2Individual and combined detection rate and false-positive rate for pregnancy plasmas and PlasmArt samples
      DisorderAffected (n = 6 plasma; 108 PlasmArt samples)Unaffected (n = 335 plasma; 108 PlasmArt samples)
      Pregnancy plasma, n/NPlasmArt, n/NTotal, n/NAnalytic detection rate, % (95% CI)Pregnancy plasma, n/NPlasmArt, n/NTotal, n/NFalse-positive rate, % (95% CI)
      22q11.2 del2/343/4345/4697.8 (88.5–99.9)3/3320/653/3970.76 (0.1–2.2)
      Prader-Willi15/1515/151000/3350/930/4280
      Angelman21/2121/211000/3350/870/4220
      1p36 del1/11/11000/3340/1080/4420
      Cri-du-chat2/222/2224/241001/3330/861/4190.24
      Larger deletions combined3/358/5861/61100 (94.1–100)1/13370/3741/17110.06 (0.0–0.3)
      Samples for which the algorithm did not produce a result were not included.
      CI, confidence interval.
      Wapner. Noninvasive screening for fetal microdeletion syndromes. Am J Obstet Gynecol 2015.
      Figure thumbnail gr3
      Figure 3Graphic representation of 1 cri-du-chat deletion pregnancy plasma with 33% fetal fraction
      Single-nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) data are represented as described in . In this case, spots are colored according to maternal genotype: SNPs for which the mother is homozygous for the A allele (AA) are indicated with red; SNPs for which the mother is homozygous for the B allele (BB) are indicated with blue, and SNPs for which the mother is heterozygous (AB) are indicated in green. Because plasma cell-free DNA is a mixture of fetal and maternal cell-free DNA, the vertical position of each spot represents the sum of the contribution of both fetal and maternal allele reads and is a function of the fetal fraction. Because most plasma cell-free DNA is maternal in origin, the spots mainly distribute according to maternal genotype. The contribution of fetal allele reads results in segregation into distinct subclusters. Fetal and maternal genotypes at individual SNPs are indicated with F and M, respectively, to the right of the plots. A-C, SNP plots reveal 2 fetal copies in the 1p36, Prader-Willi/Angelman, and 22q11.2 regions. The presence of 3 green clusters in the center of the plot (centered on 0.335, 0.50, and 0.665), and the presence of 2 red (centered on 1 and 0.835) and 2 blue (centered on 0 and 0.165) clusters, indicate the presence of 2 fetal chromosomes in the interrogated regions. D, SNP plots reveal 1 fetal copy of the cri-du-chat region. The center trio of green clusters is replaced with a duo of clusters (centered on 0.4 and 0.6), and the peripheral red and blue clusters have shifted towards the center of the plot (centered on 0.2 and 0.8, respectively). Together, this indicates the presence of a deletion on the maternal chromosome in the cri-du-chat region.
      Wapner. Noninvasive screening for fetal microdeletion syndromes. Am J Obstet Gynecol 2015.

      Artificial mixtures (PlasmArt)

      In the cohort of 111 PlasmArt samples, 108 samples passed QC metrics. The 3 samples that did not pass (1 Angelman, 1 22q11.2 deletion, 1 Prader-Willi) were due to low algorithm-generated confidence for the chromosome region of interest (1 Angelman), no-call for the chromosome region of interest (1 22q11.2 deletion), or a fetal fraction below the threshold where the algorithm makes a high-confidence copy number call (1 Prader-Willi). The detection rates and false-positive rates for the samples that passed QC are presented in Table 2.
      Figure 4 shows a 22q11.2 deletion on the paternal copy of chromosome 22 that was detected from a set of PlasmArt samples with fetal fractions that ranged from 25.9–4.8%. The absence of the peripheral red and blue clusters where the maternal genotype is homozygous (AA or BB) is the hallmark pattern of a deletion on the paternal copy of the chromosome. The deletion is detectable visually as low as 4.8% fetal fraction (Figure 4).
      Figure thumbnail gr4
      Figure 4Graphic representation of PlasmArt samples
      Representation with a 22q11.2 deletion on the paternal chromosome at A, 25.9% fetal fraction, B, 16.0% fetal fraction, and C, 4.8% fetal fraction. All PlasmArt samples depicted here were generated from genomic DNA from the same mother-child pair. Three representative plots are depicted to illustrate microdeletion detection across a wide range of fetal fractions. Single-nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) data are represented here as described in Figure 2, Figure 3. Genomic DNA that represents the fetus and mother are indicated by F and M, respectively. Plots represent the Prader-Willi/Angelman deletion region (as indicated with 1 above the plots) and the 22q11.2 deletion region (as indicated with 2 above the plots). Genotypes of the Prader-Willi/Angelman region are indicated to the left; genotypes of the 22q11.2 region are indicated to the right. The deletion on the paternal copy of chromosome 22 in the 22q11.2 region is most clearly indicated by the red and blue peripheral subclusters. A, At fetal fractions of above approximately 20%, the presence of 3 green subclusters in the center of the plot (centered around 0.63, 0.50, and 0.37) with 2 red (around 1 and 0.87), and 2 blue (around 0 and 0.13) subclusters indicates the presence of 2 fetal chromosomes in the Prader-Willi/Angelman region. By contrast, in the 22q11.2 region, the center trio of green subclusters has condensed into a duo of clusters (centered on 0.57 and 0.43), and the internal peripheral red and blue clusters are absent (as indicated by black boxes). Together, this indicates a single fetal chromosome in the 22q11.2 region. B and C, At fetal fractions of less than approximately 20% in both the Prader-Willi/Angelman and 22q11.2 regions, the center green subclusters condense towards the center of the plot and become difficult to distinguish by eye. In the Prader-Willi/Angelman regions, the internal peripheral red and blue subclusters regress towards the plots’ upper and lower limits, respectively. In the 22q11.2 regions, the absence of the internal peripheral red and blue subclusters in the 22q11.2 regions, which indicates a deletion on the paternal chromosome, is still readily apparent (as indicated by black boxes), even at fetal fractions as low as 4.8%.
      Wapner. Noninvasive screening for fetal microdeletion syndromes. Am J Obstet Gynecol 2015.

      Comment

      We have demonstrated accurate detection of the 22q11.2, 1p36, cri-du-chat, and Prader-Willi/Angelman microdeletions using a SNP-based NIPT approach. Using a large cohort of unaffected samples and artificial PlasmArt mixtures that closely mimic the size profile and fetal fraction distribution of cfDNA that is found in pregnancy plasmas, we were able to estimate sensitivities and specificities for this assay for the microdeletion syndromes that were studied. For evaluations carried out at the 22q11.2 locus, in which the number of SNPs targeted was less than for other locations, we were able to identify the presence of a deletion in 45 of 46 samples with the deletion and absence in 394 of 397 unaffected samples (Table 2). For the other 4 loci, all of which targeted the same number of polymorphic loci, deletions were detected in 61 of 61 affected samples and 1 of 1711 unaffected samples.
      In clinical practice, samples that do not return a result (no calls) for ≥1 microdeletions are unlikely to be redrawn because of the low previous risk. Under the conservative assumption that such cases would be treated as low risk (negative), the effective detection and false-positive rates for the 22q11.2 deletion would be 45 of 47 and 3 of 422, respectively, and 61 of 63 and 1 of 1813, respectively, for the larger deletions combined (Table 3). Our results suggest that screening for this set of 5 microdeletions could be added to existing NIPT for fetal aneuploidy with a minimal combined incremental false-positive rate of approximately 0.8% (Table 3).
      Table 3Combined detection rate and false-positive rate for pregnancy plasmas and PlasmArt samples
      VariableEffective detection rate
      Detection rates for the specific detected deletions
      Net detection rate,
      Net detection rates for each syndrome that take into account the prevalence of each detected deletion.
      %
      False-positive rate
      n/N95% CIn/N%95% CI
      22q11.2 del45/4795.7: 85.5–99.583.33/4220.710.1–2.1
      Larger deletions combined61/6396.8: 89.0–99.645.51/18130.060.0–0.3
      Samples for which the algorithm did not receive a result are treated conservatively as negatives.
      CI, confidence interval.
      Wapner. Noninvasive screening for fetal microdeletion syndromes. Am J Obstet Gynecol 2015.
      a Detection rates for the specific detected deletions
      b Net detection rates for each syndrome that take into account the prevalence of each detected deletion.
      When we combined the data for maternal plasma samples and the PlasmArt samples, the detection rate for 22q11.2 deletions was 45 of 46 (97.8%), and the false-positive rate was 3 of 397 (0.76%; Table 2). Based on a deletion prevalence of 1 of 2000 in the general population, an estimate that the 3-Mb deletion constitutes 87% of all 22q11.2 deletions,
      • Shaikh T.H.
      • Kurahashi H.
      • Saitta S.C.
      • et al.
      Chromosome 22-specific low copy repeats and the 22q11.2 deletion syndrome: genomic organization and deletion endpoint analysis.
      and the conservative assumption that this test will not identify any of the other variant deletions, the results would translate into a positive predictive value of approximately 5.3% and a negative predictive value of approximately 99.99% (Table 4).
      Table 4Estimated positive predictive value and negative predictive value
      DisorderIncidence (1:n)Frequency of deletion evaluatedPositive predictive value,
      Calculated by multiplying population incidence, the frequency of the deletion evaluated, and the positive likelihood ratio (detection rate/false-positive rate)
      %
      Negative predictive value,
      Calculated by multiplying population incidence, the frequency of the deletion evaluated, and the negative likelihood ratio ([1-detection rate]/[1-false-positive rate]).
      %
      22q11.2 del20000.875.3>99.99
      Prader-Willi10,0000.284.6>99.99
      Angelman12,0000.283.8>99.99
      1p36 del50000.6017.0>99.99
      Cri-du-chat20,0000.655.3>99.99
      Wapner. Noninvasive screening for fetal microdeletion syndromes. Am J Obstet Gynecol 2015.
      a Calculated by multiplying population incidence, the frequency of the deletion evaluated, and the positive likelihood ratio (detection rate/false-positive rate)
      b Calculated by multiplying population incidence, the frequency of the deletion evaluated, and the negative likelihood ratio ([1-detection rate]/[1-false-positive rate]).
      For the other deletion syndromes (which, in general, constitute larger genomic regions with more SNPs within each region), the combined detection rate was 61 of 61 (100%), and the false-positive rate was 1 of 1711 (0.06%; Table 2). These combined rates were used to estimate positive and negative predictive values for each disorder (Table 4). The deletions included in this study constitute almost 70% of the causal mutations in the 5 syndromes. The positive predictive value conservatively assumed that none of the other variant deletions in patients with these disorders would be identified and also that uniparental disomy would not be recognized. In practice, because some of the other deletions that are seen in these disorders can be large and because uniparental disomy is expected to be recognized, it is likely that >70% of affected pregnancies would be found. Further, it is possible that this assay could detect smaller deletions. Thus, the detection rates described here are considered to be a conservative indication of what could be expected in a clinical setting. To further improve the positive predictive value, reflex testing of samples found to be high risk to higher depth of read currently is being investigated.
      Our initial studies have focused on 5 microdeletion syndromes that collectively have a population incidence of approximately 1 in 1000. These disorders are associated with significant morbidity and mortality rates and includes intellectual disability.
      • Wapner R.J.
      • Martin C.L.
      • Levy B.
      • et al.
      Chromosomal microarray versus karyotyping for prenatal diagnosis.
      • Goldmuntz E.
      • Clark B.J.
      • Mitchell L.E.
      • et al.
      Frequency of 22q11 deletions in patients with conotruncal defects.
      • Goldmuntz E.
      • Driscoll D.
      • Budarf M.L.
      • et al.
      Microdeletions of chromosomal region 22q11 in patients with congenital conotruncal cardiac defects.
      • Gross S.J.
      • Bajaj K.
      • Garry D.
      • et al.
      Rapid and novel prenatal molecular assay for detecting aneuploidies and microdeletion syndromes.

      GeneTests. Available at: https://www.genetests.org. Accessed March 12, 2014.

      Additionally, the SNP method that was used distinguishes between a deletion that has arisen on a paternally vs a maternally inherited chromosome, which will facilitate clinical interpretation when an imprinted gene is involved, such as Prader-Willi or Angelman syndrome, even though patients with these disorders can have identical chromosome 15 deletions.
      • Buiting K.
      Prader–Willi syndrome and Angelman syndrome.
      It should be recognized that, for patients who seek comprehensive diagnostic testing, chromosomal microarray analysis is the gold standard. However, for patients who want information about the genetic status of their fetus but who desire to avoid invasive testing, NIPT with broad clinical coverage can be an appropriate first step.
      A noninvasive screening test for a defined set of submicroscopic CNVs allows a focus on the common recurrent changes that are known to be associated with well-defined phenotypes. The phenotypes associated with CNVs in other genomic regions are becoming increasingly well-defined, which supports their addition to a screening approach. However, because each CNV will be rare, it is important that the false-positive rate for each is very low. Our study shows that this can be achieved while retaining a high positive predictive value (Table 4).
      A significant limitation of this study was the lack of sufficient maternal plasma samples from affected pregnancies at appropriate gestational ages. Because these disorders are relatively rare and because prenatal screening for these disorders is unprecedented, it was not possible to conduct a large-scale study on patient samples. To partially overcome this limitation, we generated artificial pregnancy plasma mixtures, termed PlasmArts, over an appropriate range of fetal DNA concentrations. The value of the PlasmArt approach is based on a number of observations. Plasma cfDNA is known to consist of both maternal and fetal fragments. The fetal fragments are mainly mononucleosomal
      • Chan K.C.A.
      • Zhang J.
      • Hui A.B.Y.
      • et al.
      Size distributions of maternal and fetal DNA in maternal plasma.
      • Fan H.C.
      • Blumenfeld Y.J.
      • Chitkara U.
      • Hudgins L.
      • Quake S.R.
      Analysis of the size distributions of fetal and maternal cell-free DNA by paired-end sequencing.
      that are generated during placental apoptosis
      • Li Y.
      • Zimmermann B.
      • Rusterholz C.
      • Kang A.
      • Holzgreve W.
      • Hahn S.
      Size separation of circulatory DNA in maternal plasma permits ready detection of fetal DNA polymorphisms.
      and, as such, have specific cleavage sites. Maternal mononucleosomal fragments are approximately 23 nucleotides longer than fetal fragments,
      • Chan K.C.A.
      • Zhang J.
      • Hui A.B.Y.
      • et al.
      Size distributions of maternal and fetal DNA in maternal plasma.
      • Fan H.C.
      • Blumenfeld Y.J.
      • Chitkara U.
      • Hudgins L.
      • Quake S.R.
      Analysis of the size distributions of fetal and maternal cell-free DNA by paired-end sequencing.
      • Lo Y.M.
      • Chan K.C.
      • Sun H.
      • et al.
      Maternal plasma DNA sequencing reveals the genome-wide genetic and mutational profile of the fetus.
      • Zheng Y.W.L.
      • Chan K.C.A.
      • Sun H.
      • et al.
      Nonhematopoietically derived DNA is shorter than hematopoietically derived DNA in plasma: a transplantation model.
      and maternal cfDNA is known to consist of a nucleosomal ladder.
      • Chan K.C.A.
      • Zhang J.
      • Hui A.B.Y.
      • et al.
      Size distributions of maternal and fetal DNA in maternal plasma.
      Additionally, both the fetal and maternal DNA fragments are thought to have associated proteins. Thus, the enzymatic fragmentation and “fetal” DNA size purification used in this study is expected to be superior to the use of sonication,
      • Srinivasan A.
      • Bianchi D.W.
      • Huang H.
      • Sehnert A.J.
      • Rava R.P.
      Noninvasive detection of fetal subchromosome abnormalities via deep sequencing of maternal plasma.
      in that it creates fragments similar to those observed in vivo. Additionally, this method will leave proteins intact, in contrast to sonication, which denatures proteins; however, whether this affects cfDNA-based detection of CNVs has not been determined. Research is ongoing to further validate the PlasmArt method as a model for clinical samples.
      The exact coordinates and size of some CNVs will differ substantially between individuals. Because of the rarity of positive control samples, this cohort contained a limited number of affected samples, including the use of replicate PlasmArts that were derived from the same mother-child pairs. Further validation of this technology in a larger series is warranted. Performance of this SNP-based method for the detection of well-defined microdeletions is expected to depend primarily on the number of informative SNPs in each region of interest. Although this may limit the detection capabilities for small regions of interest, for larger discrete abnormalities, it should offer a robust and generalizable approach. In other words, because performance is related to the number of informative SNPs in a target region, and not on the identity of the SNPs, validation of rare microdeletions should be possible without the need to collect a large set of positive controls for validation of each microdeletion. Ongoing studies in the clinical population, in which more affected samples are available, will provide insights into the generalizability of performance metrics for different microdeletion syndromes.
      Detection of fetal microdeletions has been reported with methods that use shotgun sequencing and counting DNA fragments.
      • Jensen T.J.
      • Dzakula Z.
      • Deciu C.
      • van den Boom D.
      • Ehrich M.
      Detection of microdeletion 22q11.2 in a fetus by next-generation sequencing of maternal plasma.
      • Srinivasan A.
      • Bianchi D.W.
      • Huang H.
      • Sehnert A.J.
      • Rava R.P.
      Noninvasive detection of fetal subchromosome abnormalities via deep sequencing of maternal plasma.
      Because these methods amplify all chromosomes indiscriminately and because these deletion syndromes affect <1% of the genome, large numbers of sequence reads are required for accurate detection of subchromosomal anomalies.
      • Benn P.
      • Cuckle H.
      Theoretical performance of non-invasive prenatal testing for chromosome imbalances using counting of cell-free DNA fragments in maternal plasma.
      In these initial studies that used shotgun sequencing, microdeletions were detected with the use of a depth of sequencing between 2.4 × 108 and 1.3 × 109 sequence reads,
      • Srinivasan A.
      • Bianchi D.W.
      • Huang H.
      • Sehnert A.J.
      • Rava R.P.
      Noninvasive detection of fetal subchromosome abnormalities via deep sequencing of maternal plasma.
      • Peters D.
      • Chu T.
      • Yatsenko S.A.
      • et al.
      Noninvasive prenatal diagnosis of a fetal microdeletion syndrome.
      which is substantially higher than that currently used for aneuploidy detection. The method reported here achieved high sensitivity and specificity with an average of only 8.9 × 106 mapped reads, which demonstrates one of the significant advantages of this targeted sequencing approach. Also, nontargeted sequencing will identify variants of unknown significance,
      • Kitzman J.O.
      • Snyder M.W.
      • Ventura M.
      • et al.
      Noninvasive whole-genome sequencing of a human fetus.
      • Fan H.C.
      • Gu W.
      • Wang J.
      • Blumenfeld Y.J.
      • El-Sayed Y.Y.
      • Quake S.R.
      Non-invasive prenatal measurement of the fetal genome.
      which will increase the need for invasive testing and can present counseling dilemmas. Alternatively, the SNP-based method can target specific regions with well-described phenotypes. Although this SNP-based approach offers a number of benefits over counting methods, there are some limitations to this approach. The SNP method requires a longer polymerase chain reaction process, and, as of now, this assay is not appropriate for egg donors.
      This report describes the identification of 5 well-defined microdeletion syndromes through noninvasive methods. This next-generation SNP- and NATUS-based NIPT approach routinely identified 22q11.2, 1p36, cri-du-chat, Prader-Willi, and Angelman microdeletions with a low rate of screen positive results. The fact that clinically relevant microdeletions and duplications occur in >1% of pregnancies, regardless of maternal age, challenges the notion of “low-risk pregnancies”
      • Wapner R.J.
      • Martin C.L.
      • Levy B.
      • et al.
      Chromosomal microarray versus karyotyping for prenatal diagnosis.
      and suggests that offering NIPT-based microdeletion screening to the general pregnancy population may be appropriate. Although this report demonstrates the technical ability to identify microdeletions, widespread implementation will require education of care givers and appropriate counseling of patients. Counseling should include the performance and scope of the testing, information about the frequency and phenotype of the disorders, and the fact that testing is voluntary. We recognize that additional validation studies are needed to provide greater confidence in this screening test.
      Overall, these genomic alterations occur more frequently than those presently screened for, such as Down syndrome; many microdeletion syndromes, including those in our study, have severe phenotypes. As the technology improves, other microdeletions and duplications should also be identifiable by noninvasive testing. Although some of these may have less severe phenotypes, knowledge of them will allow early interventions, which have been shown to improve greatly a child’s development.
      • Council N.R.
      Educating children with autism.
      • Handleman J.S.
      • Harris S.C.
      Preschool education programs for children with autism.
      • Cheung E.N.M.
      • George S.R.
      • Costain G.A.
      • et al.
      Prevalence of hypocalcemia and its associated features in 22q11.2 deletion syndrome.

      Acknowledgments

      The authors thank Dr David Ledbetter for critical input on the manuscript and Bin Hoang, Christina Ng, Ayupe Obad, Dr Eser Kirkizlar, Dr Svetlana Shchegrova, Dr Dusan Kijacic, and Akshita Kalyan for sample processing and excellent technical support.

      References

        • Lo Y.M.
        • Corbetta N.
        • Chamberlain P.F.
        • et al.
        Presence of fetal DNA in maternal plasma and serum.
        Lancet. 1997; 350: 485-487
        • Kazakov V.I.
        • Bozhkov V.M.
        • Linde V.A.
        • Repina M.A.
        • Mikhailov V.M.
        [Extracellular DNA in the blood of pregnant women].
        Tsitologiia. 1995; 37: 232-236
        • Chitty L.S.
        • Bianchi D.W.
        Noninvasive prenatal testing: the paradigm is shifting rapidly.
        Prenatal Diagnosis. 2013; 33: 511-513
        • Benn P.
        • Cuckle H.
        • Pergament E.
        Non-invasive prenatal testing for aneuploidy: current status and future prospects.
        Ultrasound Obstet Gynecol. 2013; 42: 15-33
        • Palomaki G.E.
        • Kloza E.M.
        • Lambert-Messerlian G.M.
        • et al.
        DNA sequencing of maternal plasma to detect Down syndrome: an international clinical validation study.
        Genet Med. 2011; 13: 913-920
        • Sparks A.B.
        • Struble C.A.
        • Wang E.T.
        • Song K.
        • Oliphant A.
        Noninvasive prenatal detection and selective analysis of cell-free DNA obtained from maternal blood: evaluation for trisomy 21 and trisomy 18.
        Am J Obstet Gynecol. 2012; 206: 319.e1-319.e9
        • Bianchi D.W.
        • Platt L.D.
        • Goldberg J.D.
        • Abuhamad A.Z.
        • Sehnert A.J.
        • Rava R.P.
        Genome-wide fetal aneuploidy detection by maternal plasma DNA sequencing.
        Obstet Gynecol. 2012; 119: 890-901
        • Levy B.
        • Norwitz E.
        Non-invasive prenatal aneuploidy testing: technologies and clinical implication.
        MLO Med Lab Obs. 2013; 45 (10, 12 passim; quiz 16): 8
        • Nicolaides K.H.
        • Syngelaki A.
        • Gil M.
        • Atanasova V.
        • Markova D.
        Validation of targeted sequencing of single-nucleotide polymorphisms for non-invasive prenatal detection of aneuploidy of chromosomes 13, 18, 21, X, and Y.
        Prenat Diagn. 2013; 33: 575-579
        • Pergament E.
        • Cuckle H.
        • Zimmermann B.
        • et al.
        Single-nucleotide polymorphism-based non-invasive prenatal testing in a high- and low-risk cohort.
        Obstet Gynecol. 2014; 124: 210-218
        • Nicolaides K.
        • Syngelaki A.
        • Gil M.
        • Quezada M.
        • Zinevich Y.
        Prenatal detection of fetal triploidy from cell-free DNA testing in maternal blood.
        Fetal Diagn Ther. 2014; 35: 212-217
        • Samango-Sprouse C.
        • Banjevic M.
        • Ryan A.
        • et al.
        SNP-based non-invasive prenatal testing detects sex chromosome aneuploidies with high accuracy.
        Prenat Diagn. 2013; 33: 643-649
        • Hall M.P.
        • Hill M.
        • Zimmermann P.B.
        • et al.
        Non-invasive prenatal detection of trisomy 13 using a single nucleotide polymorphism- and informatics-based approach.
        PLoS One. 2014; 9: e96677
        • Wapner R.J.
        • Martin C.L.
        • Levy B.
        • et al.
        Chromosomal microarray versus karyotyping for prenatal diagnosis.
        N Engl J Med. 2012; 367: 2175-2184
        • Council N.R.
        Educating children with autism.
        National Academies Press, Washington, DC2001
        • Handleman J.S.
        • Harris S.C.
        Preschool education programs for children with autism.
        Pro ed, Austin, TX2000
        • Cheung E.N.M.
        • George S.R.
        • Costain G.A.
        • et al.
        Prevalence of hypocalcemia and its associated features in 22q11.2 deletion syndrome.
        Clin Endocrinol (Oxf). 2014; 81: 190-196
        • American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists
        The use of chromosomal microarray analysis in prenatal diagnosis.
        ACOG Practice Bulletin no. 581.Obstet Gynecol. 2013; 122: 1374-1377
        • American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists
        Invasive prenatal testing for aneuploidy. ACOG Practice Bulletin no. 88.
        Obstet Gynecol. 2007; 110: 1459-1467
        • Jensen T.J.
        • Dzakula Z.
        • Deciu C.
        • van den Boom D.
        • Ehrich M.
        Detection of microdeletion 22q11.2 in a fetus by next-generation sequencing of maternal plasma.
        Clin Chem. 2012; 58: 1148-1151
        • Srinivasan A.
        • Bianchi D.W.
        • Huang H.
        • Sehnert A.J.
        • Rava R.P.
        Noninvasive detection of fetal subchromosome abnormalities via deep sequencing of maternal plasma.
        Am J Hum Genet. 2013; 92: 167-176
        • Kitzman J.O.
        • Snyder M.W.
        • Ventura M.
        • et al.
        Noninvasive whole-genome sequencing of a human fetus.
        Sci Transl Med. 2012; 4: 137ra76
        • Fan H.C.
        • Gu W.
        • Wang J.
        • Blumenfeld Y.J.
        • El-Sayed Y.Y.
        • Quake S.R.
        Non-invasive prenatal measurement of the fetal genome.
        Nature. 2012; 487: 320-324
        • Spetman B.L.
        • Leuking S.
        • Roberts B.
        • Dennis J.
        Microarray mapping of nucleosome position.
        in: Craig J. Wong N. Epigenetics: a reference manual. Horizon Scientific Press, Norwich, UK2011: 337-347
        • Axel R.
        Cleavage of DNA in nuclei and chromatin with staphylococcal nuclease.
        Biochemistry. 1975; 14: 2921-2925
        • Chan K.C.A.
        • Zhang J.
        • Hui A.B.Y.
        • et al.
        Size distributions of maternal and fetal DNA in maternal plasma.
        Clin Chem. 2004; 50: 88-92
        • Shaikh T.H.
        • Kurahashi H.
        • Saitta S.C.
        • et al.
        Chromosome 22-specific low copy repeats and the 22q11.2 deletion syndrome: genomic organization and deletion endpoint analysis.
        Hum Mol Genet. 2000; 9: 489-501
        • Goldmuntz E.
        • Clark B.J.
        • Mitchell L.E.
        • et al.
        Frequency of 22q11 deletions in patients with conotruncal defects.
        J Am Coll Cardiol. 1998; 32: 492-498
        • Goldmuntz E.
        • Driscoll D.
        • Budarf M.L.
        • et al.
        Microdeletions of chromosomal region 22q11 in patients with congenital conotruncal cardiac defects.
        J Med Genet. 1993; 30: 807-812
        • Gross S.J.
        • Bajaj K.
        • Garry D.
        • et al.
        Rapid and novel prenatal molecular assay for detecting aneuploidies and microdeletion syndromes.
        Prenat Diagn. 2011; 31: 259-266
      1. GeneTests. Available at: https://www.genetests.org. Accessed March 12, 2014.

        • Buiting K.
        Prader–Willi syndrome and Angelman syndrome.
        Am J Medical Genet Part C: Seminars in Medical Genetics. 2010; 154C: 365-376
        • Fan H.C.
        • Blumenfeld Y.J.
        • Chitkara U.
        • Hudgins L.
        • Quake S.R.
        Analysis of the size distributions of fetal and maternal cell-free DNA by paired-end sequencing.
        Clin Chem. 2010; 56: 1279-1286
        • Li Y.
        • Zimmermann B.
        • Rusterholz C.
        • Kang A.
        • Holzgreve W.
        • Hahn S.
        Size separation of circulatory DNA in maternal plasma permits ready detection of fetal DNA polymorphisms.
        Clin Chem. 2004; 50: 1002-1011
        • Lo Y.M.
        • Chan K.C.
        • Sun H.
        • et al.
        Maternal plasma DNA sequencing reveals the genome-wide genetic and mutational profile of the fetus.
        Sci Transl Med. 2010; 2: 61ra91
        • Zheng Y.W.L.
        • Chan K.C.A.
        • Sun H.
        • et al.
        Nonhematopoietically derived DNA is shorter than hematopoietically derived DNA in plasma: a transplantation model.
        Clin Chem. 2012; 58: 549-558
        • Benn P.
        • Cuckle H.
        Theoretical performance of non-invasive prenatal testing for chromosome imbalances using counting of cell-free DNA fragments in maternal plasma.
        Prenat Diagn. 2014; 34: 778-783
        • Peters D.
        • Chu T.
        • Yatsenko S.A.
        • et al.
        Noninvasive prenatal diagnosis of a fetal microdeletion syndrome.
        N Engl J Med. 2011; 365: 1847-1848

      Linked Article

      • Noninvasive prenatal testing for 22q11.2 deletion syndrome: deeper sequencing increases the positive predictive value
        American Journal of Obstetrics & GynecologyVol. 213Issue 2
        • Preview
          Our recent study entitled, “Expanding the scope of noninvasive prenatal testing: detection of fetal microdeletion syndromes” by Wapner et al,1 demonstrated that single-nucleotide polymorphism-based noninvasive prenatal testing had high sensitivity and specificity for the detection of the 22q11.2 deletion. Since then, we have investigated whether resequencing samples that received a high-risk call at the standard depth of read (DOR) at a higher DOR (HDOR) would reduce the false-positive rate (FPR) and hence increase the positive predictive value (PPV) while maintaining high sensitivity.
        • Full-Text
        • PDF