Mutation of solute carrier SLC16A12 associates with a syndrome combining juvenile cataract with microcornea and renal glucosuria

Am J Hum Genet. 2008 Mar;82(3):772-9. doi: 10.1016/j.ajhg.2007.12.013. Epub 2008 Feb 14.


Unobstructed vision requires a particular refractive index of the lens, a measure based on the organization of the structural proteins within the differentiated lens cells. To ensure an intact lens structure, homeostasis within the lens cells is indispensable. Alterations of the lens structure result in opacity and lead to cataract. Renal glucosuria is defined by elevated glucose level in the urine without hyperglycemia and without evidence of morphological renal anomalies. In a Swiss family with autosomal dominant juvenile cataract, microcornea, and renal glucosuria, we have identified a nonsense mutation in a member of the carboxylic acid transporter family SLC16. The underlying gene defect in SLC16A12 resides within a 3 cM region on chromosome 10q23.13 defined by linkage mapping of this phenotype. We found tissue-specific variability of SLC16A12 transcript levels in control samples, with high expression in the eye and kidney, the two organs affected by this syndrome. This report demonstrates biological relevance of this solute carrier. We hypothesize that SLC16A12 is important for lens and kidney homeostasis and discuss its potential role in age-related cataract.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Base Sequence
  • Cataract / genetics*
  • Chromosome Mapping
  • Chromosomes, Human, Pair 10 / genetics*
  • Codon, Nonsense
  • Cornea / abnormalities*
  • Female
  • Genetic Variation
  • Glycosuria, Renal / genetics*
  • Haplotypes
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • Monocarboxylic Acid Transporters / genetics*
  • Pedigree
  • Switzerland
  • Syndrome
  • Transcription, Genetic


  • Codon, Nonsense
  • Monocarboxylic Acid Transporters
  • SLC16A12 protein, human