Benign Hereditary Chorea: An Update

  • Kathryn J. Peall
  • Manju A Kurian

Abstract

Benign hereditary chorea (BHC) is a childhood-onset, hyperkinetic movement disorder normally with little progression of motor symptoms into adult life. The disorder is caused by mutations to the NKX2.1 (TITF1) gene and also forms part of the “brain–lung–thyroid syndrome”, in which additional developmental abnormalities of lung and thyroid tissue are observed. In this review, we summarize the main clinical findings in “classical” BHC syndrome and discuss more recently reported atypical features, including non-choreiform movement phenotypes. We highlight additional non-motor characteristics such as cognitive impairment and psychiatric symptoms, while discussing the evidence for BHC as a developmental disorder involving impaired neural migration and other multisystem developmental abnormalities. Finally, we will discuss the efficacy of available therapies in both affected pediatric and adult cohorts. Delineation of the BHC disease spectrum will no doubt expand our understanding of this disorder, facilitating better targeting of genetic testing and establish a framework for future clinical trials.