Clinical characteristics and molecular genetics of complete androgen insensitivity syndrome patients: a series study of 30 cases from a Chinese tertiary medical center

This study investigated the genotypes of 30 patients with clinically diagnosed complete androgen insensitivity syndrome (CAIS). It broadens the spectrum of AR gene mutations responsible for CAIS and enhances our comprehension of CAIS-like manifestations.

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VOLUME 115, ISSUE 5, P1270-1279


Duoduo Zhang, M.D., Fengxia Yao, M.D., Tiffany Tian, B.S., Shan Deng, M.D., Min Luo, M.D., Qinjie Tian, M.D., Ph.D. 



To study the clinical characteristics and genetic basis of complete androgen insensitivity syndrome (CAIS) in patients from the People’s Republic of China. CAIS patients with 46 XY karyotype produce male levels of androgens but present with female external genitalia and secondary sex characteristics. The majority of affected individuals have androgen receptor (AR) gene mutations. This case series explored clinical and molecular characteristics of CAIS patients from the People’s Republic of China.


Genomic DNA from peripheral blood of clinically diagnosed CAIS patients was sequenced for mutation in the androgen receptor (AR) gene and steroid 5α-reductase type 2 gene (SRD5A2).


Participants were recruited from Peking Union Medical College Hospital when they came in for consultation.


Thirty patients from unrelated families were recruited.


Data from medical documents recording diagnosis and treatment of these patients were retrospectively collected.

Main Outcome Measures

Patient genotypes were determined by sequencing the AR and SRD5A2 genes. Their clinical characteristics were summarized based on symptoms, hormone profiles, operative findings, and pathological results.


Twenty-one patients diagnosed with CAIS had mutations in AR exons. Analysis of AR exons revealed the presence of seven novel mutations (c.58C>T, c.645_652delGGGGGCTC, c.910G>T, c.1078C>T, c.1786T>A, c.2230G>T, and c.2522G>C); of these mutations, 47.6% (10/21) were located in the ligand-binding domain. Gonadal insufficiency was found in one case of CAIS. Among the remaining nine patients, three had SRD5A2 mutations and therefore a steroid 5α-reductase deficiency. No AR or SRD5A2 mutations were detected in the other six patients.


This study broadens the spectrum of known AR gene mutations responsible for CAIS, and implies that there can be more complex underlying causes of CAIS.

Fertility and Sterility

Editorial Office, American Society for Reproductive Medicine

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