We sought to evaluate the performance of exome sequencing (ES) in determining an underlying genetic etiology for cases of fetal pleural effusions.
We examined a prospective cohort series of fetal pleural effusions visualized sonographically between April 1, 2016 and August 31, 2017. Fetal pleural effusions attributed to twin sharing, anemia or structural anomalies were excluded, as were all cases with a genetic diagnosis established by karyotype or chromosomal microarray analysis. The remaining cases with pleural effusions of unclear etiology were offered ES. ES was performed by clinical sequencing and/or sequencing under the Baylor-Hopkins Center for Mendelian Genomics’ (BHCMG) research platform. All cases were evaluated for novel genes or phenotypic expansion of disease-causing genes.
ES was performed on six probands affected by pleural effusions. A pathogenic variant was identified in 1 case (16.7%). Four additional cases had variants of uncertain significance (VUS) in candidate genes of pathological interest. Neither clinical or candidate genes were evident in the final case.
ES should be considered in the evaluation of prenatally detected idiopathic pleural effusions when other diagnostic work up for a genetic etiology has failed. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.

This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.