We report mutations in a gene (PRPF31) homologous to Saccharomyces cerevisiae pre-mRNA splicing gene PRP31 in families with autosomal dominant retinitis pigmentosa linked to chromosome 19q13.4 (RP11; MIM 600138). A positional cloning approach supported by bioinformatics identified PRPF31 comprising 14 exons and encoding a protein of 499 amino acids. The level of sequence identity to the yeast PRP31 gene indicates that PRPF31 is also likely to be involved in pre-mRNA splicing. Mutations that include missense substitutions, deletions, and insertions have been identified in four RP11-linked families and three sporadic RP cases. The identification of mutations in a pre-mRNA splicing gene implicates defects in the splicing process as a novel mechanism of photoreceptor degeneration.