Hedgehog Signal Defect Leading to Familial Exudative Vitreoretinopathy-Like Disease and Gastrointestinal Malformation

Turk J Ophthalmol. 2022 Jun 29;52(3):174-178. doi: 10.4274/tjo.galenos.2021.72929.


Objectives: The aim of the study was to present a new genetic association presenting with gastrointestinal tract malformations (GTMs) and familial exudative vitreoretinopathy (FEVR)-like disease and review the genetics of Hedgehog signaling.

Materials and methods: Three neonates were diagnosed with FEVR-like retinal vascular disease upon routine ophthalmological examination during hospitalization in the neonatal surgical intensive care unit for GTMs. Genetic analysis of the neonates was performed.

Results: Gestational age of the neonates was 39, 38, and 39 weeks and birth weights were 3,500, 3,600, and 3,300 grams, respectively. All six eyes of the three infants were treated by laser photocoagulation. Recurrence was not seen in any of the eyes. Genetical analysis of all the neonates diagnosed with FEVR-like disease revealed defects in the Hedgehog pathway.

Conclusion: FEVR is a genetically well-defined retinal vascular disease. The current study is the first to show an association between FEVR-like retinal vascular disease and GTMs. This study demonstrates the importance of the Hedgehog pathway in retinal vascular and gut development.

Keywords: Familial exudative vitreoretinopathy; gastrointestinal tract malformations; genetic; hedgehog pathway; retinal vasculardisease.

MeSH terms

  • Eye Diseases*
  • Familial Exudative Vitreoretinopathies
  • Hedgehog Proteins / genetics
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Retinal Diseases* / diagnosis
  • Vascular Diseases*


  • Hedgehog Proteins