Toward an improved definition of the genetic and tumor spectrum associated with SDH germ-line mutations

Lucie Evenepoel, Thomas G. Papathomas, Niels Krol, Esther Korpershoek, Ronald R. De Krijger, Alexandre Persu, Winand N.M. Dinjens

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

91 Citations (Scopus)


The tricarboxylic acid, or Krebs, cycle is central to the cellular metabolism of sugars, lipids, and amino acids; it fuels the mitochondrial respiratory chain for energy generation. In the past decade, mutations in the Krebs-cycle enzymes succinate dehydrogenase, fumarate hydratase, and isocitrate dehydrogenase have been documented to be causally involved in carcinogenesis. This review is focused on the relationship between SDH mutations and the carcinogenic phenotype. The succinate dehydrogenase complex catalyzes the oxidation of succinate to fumarate; mutations in its subunits SDHA, SDHB, SDHC, and SDHD, and in the assembly factor SDHAF2, result in syndromes with distinct tumor types, including pheochromocytoma/paraganglioma, gastrointestinal stromal tumor, and, less often, renal-cell carcinoma and pituitary adenoma. In this study we collected all previously reported SDH mutations with the aim of defining their nature and tumor spectrum. In addition, genotype-phenotype correlations as well as mechanisms of biallelic inactivation were analyzed in the SDH-deficient setting. Finally, we performed bioinformatics analysis using SIFT, Polyphen2, and Mutation Assessor to predict the functional impact of nonsynonymous mutations. The prediction of the latter was further compared with available SDHA and/or SDHB immunohistochemistry data.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)610-620
Number of pages11
JournalGenetics in Medicine
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - 6 Aug 2015
Externally publishedYes


  • genetics
  • immunohistochemistry
  • paragangliomas
  • pheochromocytomas
  • succinate dehydrogenase


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