Insights into the genetic basis of retinal detachment

Hum Mol Genet. 2020 Mar 13;29(4):689-702. doi: 10.1093/hmg/ddz294.


Retinal detachment (RD) is a serious and common condition, but genetic studies to date have been hampered by the small size of the assembled cohorts. In the UK Biobank data set, where RD was ascertained by self-report or hospital records, genetic correlations between RD and high myopia or cataract operation were, respectively, 0.46 (SE = 0.08) and 0.44 (SE = 0.07). These correlations are consistent with known epidemiological associations. Through meta-analysis of genome-wide association studies using UK Biobank RD cases (N = 3 977) and two cohorts, each comprising ~1 000 clinically ascertained rhegmatogenous RD patients, we uncovered 11 genome-wide significant association signals. These are near or within ZC3H11B, BMP3, COL22A1, DLG5, PLCE1, EFEMP2, TYR, FAT3, TRIM29, COL2A1 and LOXL1. Replication in the 23andMe data set, where RD is self-reported by participants, firmly establishes six RD risk loci: FAT3, COL22A1, TYR, BMP3, ZC3H11B and PLCE1. Based on the genetic associations with eye traits described to date, the first two specifically impact risk of a RD, whereas the last four point to shared aetiologies with macular condition, myopia and glaucoma. Fine-mapping prioritized the lead common missense variant (TYR S192Y) as causal variant at the TYR locus and a small set of credible causal variants at the FAT3 locus. The larger study size presented here, enabled by resources linked to health records or self-report, provides novel insights into RD aetiology and underlying pathological pathways.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Case-Control Studies
  • Cohort Studies
  • Genetic Markers*
  • Genome-Wide Association Study*
  • Humans
  • Meta-Analysis as Topic
  • Retinal Detachment / epidemiology*
  • Retinal Detachment / genetics*
  • Retinal Detachment / pathology
  • Sweden / epidemiology
  • United Kingdom / epidemiology


  • Genetic Markers