ERN-ITHACA – Brussels Centre

Lead: Pr Catheline VILAIN

Centre de génétique humaine – ULB

Service de Génétique Médicale – Hôpital Erasme

Erasme Hospital – ULB

Route de Lennik 808




Phone: +32 (0)2 555 64 30

Fax: +32 (0)2 555 64 40


Our area of expertise as ITHACA European Reference Network (ERN) centre covers all syndromes exhibiting developmental anomalies and/or intellectual disability (ID). About 1/40 newborn has a congenital malformation (261/10000 fetuses and newborn following EuroCAt reports), and 1/40 has ID. Therefore, 3 to 5 % of all human births show or will develop a developmental anomaly, among which at least 25-50% are of genetic or genomic origin. This huge population represents in reality the juxtaposition of a very large number of individually rare disorders showing an extreme diversity of causes and phenotypes. The jurisdiction and scope of expertise of this ITHACA Centre includes:

  • over 5500 dysmorphic and multiple congenital anomalie (MCA) syndromes (listed in the London Dysmorphology Database), among which over 3000 monogenic diseases, all chromosome abnormalities (most of them only detectable through array technologies), multifactorial, sporadic dysmorphological anomalies and embryofetopathies of environmental origin
  • >1500 monogenic and hundreds chromosomal forms of ID with or without associated autism spectrum disorder (ASD

Service to patients

The regional population

Organization of the Centre