PURPOSE: To report the identification of a novel mutation of the RP2 gene in two Japanese brothers with X-linked retinitis pigmentosa of a differing clinical severity. The mother was a carrier of both retinitis pigmentosa and optic atrophy. METHODS: The older brother had a severe form of retinitis pigmentosa associated with macular degeneration and total optic atrophy, whereas the younger brother presented typical X-linked retinitis pigmentosa. RESULTS: Each patient exhibited a novel 2-bp insertion at codon 278 in exon 3 of the RP2 gene as well as a 11778 mutation in mitochondrial DNA. This suggests that the older brother may have developed Leber hereditary optic neuropathy as well as retinitis pigmentosa. CONCLUSION: Molecular testing confirmed the clinical diagnosis in each case. However, such testing did not explain the differences in the severity of the ophthalmoscopic findings between the two brothers. (C) 2000 by Elsevier Science Inc.
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