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Keywords:

  • autism;
  • autism spectrum disorder;
  • brain;
  • brodmann area 19;
  • copy number variation;
  • genome-wide;
  • microarray;
  • single nucleotide polymorphism

Abstract

The Autism Tissue Program (ATP), a science program of Autism Speaks, provides researchers with access to well-characterized postmortem brain tissues. Researchers access these tissues through a peer-reviewed, project-based approval process, and obtain related clinical information from a secure, online informatics portal. However, few of these samples have DNA banked from other sources (such as a blood sample from the same individual), hindering genotype–phenotype correlation and interpretation of gene expression data derived from the banked brain tissue. Here, we describe an initiative to extract DNA from Brodmann Area 19, and genotype these samples using both the Affymetrix Genome-Wide Human SNP Array 6.0 and the Illumina Human1M-Duo DNA Analysis BeadChip genome-wide microarray technologies. We additionally verify reported gender, and infer ethnic background from the single nucleotide polymorphism data. We have also used a rigorous, multiple algorithm approach to identify genomic copy number variation (CNV) from these array data. Following an initial proof of principle study using two samples, 52 experimental samples, consisting of 27 subjects with confirmed or suspected autism and related disorders, 5 subjects with cytogenetically visible duplications of 15q, 2 with epilepsy and 18 age-matched normal controls were processed, yielding high-quality genotype data in all cases. The genotype and CNV data are provided via the ATP informatics portal as a resource for the autism research community. Autism Res 2011, 4: 89–97. © 2011, International Society for Autism Research, Wiley Periodicals, Inc.