A screen of the entire coding region of the USH2A gene in 129 unrelated patients with Usher syndrome type II (USH2) and in 146 unrelated patients with non-syndromic autosomal recessive retinitis pigmentosa (ARRP) uncovered 54 different sequence variations, including 18 likely pathogenic mutations (13 frameshift, three nonsense, and two missense), 12 changes of uncertain pathogenicity (11 missense changes and one in-frame deletion), and 24 non-pathogenic rare variants or polymorphisms. Of the 18 likely pathogenic mutations, nine were novel. Among the USH2 patients, 50 (39%) had one or two likely pathogenic mutations. The most common mutant allele in USH2 patients was E767fs, which was found in 29 patients, including one homozygote. Among the ARRP patients, we found 17 (12%) with one or two likely pathogenic mutations. The most common mutant allele in ARRP patients was C759F and it was found in 10 patients. The C759F allele was also found in two USH2 patients; in neither of them was a change in the other allele found. The second most common mutant allele in both patient groups was L1447fs (found in 6/50 USH2 patients and 6/17 ARRP patients). Of the 50+17=67 patients with identified USH2A mutations, only one mutation in one allele was found in 41+12=53 (79%); the reason for the high proportion of patients with only one identified mutation is obscure. Our results indicate that USH2A mutations are found in about 7% of all cases of RP in North America, a frequency similar to the RPGR gene (8%) and the rhodopsin gene (10%).