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Mutations in the USH2A gene are the leading cause of both non-syndromic autosomal recessive retinitis pigmentosa (RP) and Usher syndrome, a syndromic form of RP characterized by retinal dystrophy and sensorineural hearing loss. To contribute to the expansion of the USH2A-related molecular spectrum, the results of genetic screening in a large cohort of Mexican patients are presented. The study population comprised 61 patients with a clinical diagnosis of either non-syndromic RP (n = 30) or Usher syndrome type 2 (USH2; n = 31) who were demonstrated to carry biallelic pathogenic variants in USH2A in a three-year period. Genetic screening was performed either by gene panel sequencing or by exome sequencing. A total of 72 available first- or second-degree relatives were also genotyped for familial segregation of the identified variants. The USH2A mutational spectrum in RP patients included 39 distinct pathogenic variants, most of them of the missense type. The most common RP-causing variants were p.Cys759Phe (c.2276G>T), p.Glu767Serfs*21 (c.2299delG), and p.Cys319Tyr (c.956G>A), which together accounted for 25% of all RP variants. Novel USH2A mutations included three nonsense, two missense, two frameshift, and one intragenic deletion. The USH2A mutational spectrum in USH2 patients included 26 distinct pathogenic variants, most of them of the nonsense and frameshift types. The most common Usher syndrome-causing variants were p.Glu767Serfs*21 (c.2299delG), p.Arg334Trp (c.1000C>T), and c.12067-2A>G), which together accounted for 42% of all USH2-related variants. Novel Usher syndrome USH2A mutations included six nonsense, four frameshift, and two missense mutations. The c.2299delG mutation was associated with a common haplotype for SNPs located in exons 2-21 of USH2A, indicating a founder mutation effect. Our work expands the USH2A mutational profile by identifying 20 novel pathogenic variants causing syndromic and non-syndromic retinal dystrophy. The prevalent c.2299delG allele is shown to arise from a founder effect. Our results emphasize the usefulness of molecular screening in underrepresented populations for a better characterization of the molecular spectrum of common monogenic diseases. Copyright © 2023 Molecular Vision.


Vianey Ordoñez-Labastida, Oscar F Chacon-Camacho, Victor R Lopez-Rodriguez, Juan C Zenteno. USH2A mutational spectrum causing syndromic and non-syndromic retinal dystrophies in a large cohort of Mexican patients. Molecular vision. 2023;29:31-38

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PMID: 37287646

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