Isochromosome Yp and jumping translocation of Yq resulting in five cell lines in an infertile male: a case report and review of the literature
Springer Science and Business Media LLC -- Molecular Cytogenetics
DOI 10.1186/1755-8166-6-36
  1. Isochromosome Yp
  2. Jumping translocation Yq


Jumping translocations are a rare type of mosaicism in which the same portion of one donor chromosome is translocated to several recipient chromosomes. Constitutional forms of jumping translocations are rare, and the 48 cases reported to date have been associated with both normal and abnormal phenotypes. Concurrence of isochromosome (i) of one arm and translocation of the other is also rare, with seven reported cases. We describe a unique case involving concurrence of i(Yp) and a jumping translocation of Yq to the telomere of chromosomes 12q and 17q, which resulted in five cell lines.

Case presentation

The patient, an otherwise healthy 35-year-old man, was referred for cytogenetic studies because of absolute azoospermia. He had elevated levels of follicle stimulating hormone and luteinizing hormone, consistent with abnormal spermatogenesis, and decreased levels of free testosterone and inhibin B. G-banded chromosome analysis revealed a mosaic male karyotype involving five abnormal cell lines. One of the cell lines showed loss of chromosome Y and presence of i(Yp) as the sole abnormality. Three cell lines exhibited jumping translocation: two involved 17qter, and the other involved 12qter as the recipient and Yq as the common donor chromosome. One of the cell lines with der(17) additionally showed i(Yp). The other der(17) and der(12) cell lines had a missing Y chromosome. All five cell lines were confirmed by FISH. Subtelomric FISH study demonstrated no loss of chromosome material from the recipient chromosomes at the translocation junctions.


We postulate that a postzygotic pericentromeric break of the Y chromosome led to formation of isochromosome Yp, whereas Yq formed a jumping translocation through recombination between its internal telomere repeats and telomeric repeats of recipient chromosomes. This in turn led to either pairing or an exchange at the complimentary sequences. Such translocation junctions appear to be unstable and to result in a jumping translocation. Cryptic deletion or disruption of AZF (azoospermic factor) genes at Yq11 during translocation or defective pairing of X and Y chromosomes during meiosis, with abnormal sex vesicle formation and consequent spermatogenetic arrest, might be the main cause of the azoospermia in our patient.