The first case of isochromosome 18p as a mosaic in a male fetus diagnosed by amniocentesis is reported. After termination of the pregnancy at 21 weeks gestation biopsies from different fetal organs as well as from the placenta were taken and set up for long term cell cultures. The distribution of the normal and abnormal cell-line in fetal organs was unequal. Unexpectedly the metaphases in the placenta and the lymphocyte culture all showed a normal karyotype.
The tetrasomy 18p is associated with a uniform phenotype, even in fetal life, characterized by a small head with protuberant occiput, low-set ears with posterior rotation, epicanthic fold, sharp pinched nose, convex and poorly formed philtrum, high-arched palate, retrognathia, flexion contractures of fingers, short and broad hallux, hypoplastic penis, angulation of clavicles and mild scoliosis.
The propositus showed no growth retardation.