PURPOSE: To investigate the genetic cause and perform a comprehensive clinical analysis of a Danish family with autosomal recessive bestrophinopathy; to investigate whether Bestrophin may be expressed in normal human retina. DESIGN: Retrospective clinical and molecular genetic analysis and immunohistochemical observational study. METHODS: setting: National referral center. participants: A family with 5 individuals and biallelic BEST1 mutations, and enucleated eyes from 2 individuals with nonaffected retinas. observation procedures: Molecular genetic analysis included sequencing of BEST1 and co-segregation analysis. Clinical investigations included electro-oculography, full-field electroretinography, multifocal electroretinography, spectral-domain optical coherence tomography, and fundus autofluorescence imaging. Immunohistochemical analysis was performed. main outcome measures: BEST1 mutations, imaging findings, electroretinography amplitudes, and implicit times. RESULTS: The index case was compound heterozygous for p.A195V and a novel 15 base pair deletion leading to p.Q238L. The index case at age 10 demonstrated multifocal vitelliform changes that were hyperautofluorescent, cystoid macular edema in the inner nuclear layer, no light rise in the electro-oculography, and a reduced central but preserved peripheral retinal function by multifocal electroretinography. Full-field electroretinography demonstrated a reduced rod response and inner retina dysfunction. Retinal structure was normal in all 3 family members who carried a sequence change in BEST1. Electro-oculography light peak was reduced in both the mother and sister (heterozygous for p.Q238L). Immunohistochemistry could not confirm the presence of Bestrophin in normal human retina. CONCLUSIONS: Because of a relatively well preserved retinal function, autosomal recessive bestrophinopathy may be a suitable first candidate, among the BEST1-related ocular conditions, for gene replacement therapy.
American Journal of Ophthalmology, 2014, Vol 157, Issue 3