Leber hereditary optic neuropathy (LHON) and dominant optic atrophy (DOA), the most common forms of hereditary optic neuropathy, are easily confused, and it is difficult to distinguish one from the other in the clinic, especially in young children. The present study was designed to survey the mutation spectrum of common pathogenic genes (OPA1, OPA3 and mtDNA genes) and to analyze the genotype-phenotype characteristics of Chinese patients with suspected childhood-onset hereditary optic neuropathy. Genomic DNA and clinical data were collected from 304 unrelated Chinese probands with suspected hereditary optic neuropathy with an age of onset below 14 years. Sanger sequencing was used to screen variants in the coding and adjacent regions of OPA1, OPA3 and the three primary LHONrelated mutation sites in mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) (m.3460G>A, m.11778G>A and m.14484T>C). All patients underwent a complete ophthalmic examination and were compared with age-matched controls. We identified 89/304 (29.3%) primary mtDNA mutations related to LHON in 304 probands, including 76 mutations at m.11778 (76/89, 85.4% of all mtDNA mutations), four at m.3460 (4/89, 4.5%) and nine at m.14484 (9/89, 10.1%). This result was similar to the mutation frequency among Chinese patients with LHON of any age. Screening of OPA1 revealed 23 pathogenic variants, including 11 novel and 12 known pathogenic mutations. This study expanded the OPA1 mutation spectrum, and our results showed that OPA1 mutation is another common cause of childhood-onset hereditary optic neuropathy in Chinese pediatric patients, especially those with disease onset during preschool age.
Li, Y., Li, J., Jia, X., Xiao, X., Li, S., & Guo, X. (2017). Genetic and clinical analyses of DOA and LHON in 304 chinese patients with suspected childhood-onset hereditary optic neuropathy. PLoS ONE, 12(1). https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0170090