: A large hexanucleotide repeat expansion in C9orf72 has been identified as the most common genetic cause in familial amyotrophic lateral sclerosis and frontotemporal dementia. Rapid Eye Movement Sleep Behavior Disorder (RBD) is a sleep disorder that has been strongly linked to synuclein-mediated neurodegeneration. The aim of this study was to evaluate the role of the C9orf72 expansions in the pathogenesis of RBD.
We amplified the C9orf72 repeat expansion in 344 patients with RBD by a repeat-primed polymerase chain reaction assay.
: We identified two RBD patients carrying the C9orf72 repeat expansion. Most interestingly, these patients have the same C9orf72 associated-risk haplotype identified in 9p21-linked amyotrophic lateral sclerosis and frontotemporal dementia families.
: Our study enlarges the phenotypic spectrum associated with the C9orf72 hexanucleotide repeat expansions and suggests that, although rare, this expansion may play a role in the pathogenesis of RBD.