Laboratory diagnosis for DNA repair diseases has been performed in western Europe from the early seventies for xeroderma pigmentosum (XP) and from the mid-eighties for Cockayne syndrome (CS) and trichothiodystrophy (TTD). The combined data from the DNA repair diagnostic centres in France, (West) Germany, Italy, the Netherlands and the United Kingdom have been investigated for three groups of diseases: XP (including XP-variant), CS (including XP/CS complex) and TTD. Incidences in western Europe were for the first time established at 2.3 per million livebirths for XP, 2.7 per million for CS and 1.2 per million for TTD. As immigrant populations were disproportionately represented in the patients' groups, incidences were also established for the autochthonic western European population at: 0.9 per million for XP, 1.8 per million for CS and 1.1 per million for TTD. Perhaps contrary to general conceptions, compared to XP the incidence of CS appears to be somewhat higher and the incidence of TTD to be quite similar in the native West-European population.

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D N A Repair
Erasmus MC: University Medical Center Rotterdam

Kleijer, W., Laugel, V., Berneburg, M., Nardo, T., Fawcett, H., Gratchev, A., … Lehmann, A. (2008). Incidence of DNA repair deficiency disorders in western Europe: Xeroderma pigmentosum, Cockayne syndrome and trichothiodystrophy. D N A Repair, 7(5), 744–750. doi:10.1016/j.dnarep.2008.01.014