Background: This study aimed to identify the gene variants and molecular etiologies in 76 unrelated Chinese families with retinitis pigmentosa (RP).
Methods: In total, 76 families with syndromic or nonsyndromic RP, diagnosed on the basis of clinical manifestations, were recruited for this study. Genomic DNA samples from probands were analyzed by targeted panels or whole exome sequencing. Bioinformatics analysis, Sanger sequencing, and available family member segregation were used to validate sequencing data and confirm the identities of disease-causing genes.
Results: The participants enrolled in the study included 62 families that exhibited nonsyndromic RP, 13 that exhibited Usher syndrome, and one that exhibited Bardet-Biedl syndrome. We found that 43 families (56.6%) had disease-causing variants in 15 genes, including RHO, PRPF31, USH2A, CLRN1, BBS2, CYP4V2, EYS, RPE65, CNGA1, CNGB1, PDE6B, MERTK, RP1, RP2, and RPGR; moreover, 12 families (15.8%) had only one heterozygous variant in seven autosomal recessive RP genes, including USH2A, EYS, CLRN1, CERKL, RP1, CRB1, and SLC7A14. We did not detect any variants in the remaining 21 families (27.6%). We also identified 67 potential pathogenic gene variants, of which 24 were novel.
Conclusion: The gene variants identified in this study expand the variant frequency and spectrum of RP genes; moreover, the identification of these variants supplies foundational clues for future RP diagnosis and therapy.
Keywords: gene variant; next-generation sequencing; retinitis pigmentosa; targeted panels sequencing; whole exome sequencing.
© 2020 The Authors. Molecular Genetics & Genomic Medicine published by Wiley Periodicals, Inc.