Novel TSPAN12 mutations in patients with familial exudative vitreoretinopathy and their associated phenotypes

Mol Vis. 2011 Apr 29;17:1128-35.


Purpose: Mutations in tetraspanin 12 (TSPAN12) have recently been identified as a cause of autosomal dominant familial exudative vitreoretinopathy (FEVR). The purpose of this study was to detect TSPAN12 mutations in Chinese patients with FEVR and to describe the associated phenotypes.

Methods: Sanger sequencing was used to analyze the seven coding exons and their adjacent regions of TSPAN12 in 49 unrelated FEVR patients. Clinical phenotypes of the patients with TSPAN12 mutations were documented.

Results: Three novel heterozygous mutations in TSPAN12 were identified in three patients from unrelated families: c.146C>T (p.Thr49Met), c.313T>C (p.Cys105Arg), and c.601delC (p.Leu201PhefsX14). All three mutations involved highly conserved residues and were not present in 180 normal individuals. Ocular phenotypes included retinal folds, inferotemporal dragging of the optic disc and macula, increased vessels in the equatorial region, and a peripheral avascular zone. A father and his daughter had the same mutation but the father only had mild peripheral fundus changes while his daughter had obvious dragged disc and macular ectopia.

Conclusions: Our results suggest that TSPAN12 mutations are responsible for FEVR. Similar to patients with mutations in NDP, LRP5, or FZD4, the phenotypes associated with TSPAN12 mutations showed great variations between different individuals within a family and between the two eyes in individual patients.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Amino Acid Sequence
  • Asian People / genetics
  • Base Sequence
  • DNA Mutational Analysis
  • Eye / metabolism
  • Eye / pathology
  • Familial Exudative Vitreoretinopathies
  • Female
  • Genes, Dominant
  • Genetic Association Studies
  • Genetic Variation
  • Heterozygote
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Membrane Proteins / genetics*
  • Membrane Proteins / metabolism
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • Mutation
  • Osteoporosis / genetics*
  • Osteoporosis / metabolism
  • Osteoporosis / pathology
  • Pedigree
  • Phenotype*
  • Tetraspanins
  • Vitreoretinopathy, Proliferative / genetics*
  • Vitreoretinopathy, Proliferative / metabolism
  • Vitreoretinopathy, Proliferative / pathology


  • Membrane Proteins
  • TSPAN12 protein, human
  • Tetraspanins

Supplementary concepts

  • Exudative vitreoretinopathy 1