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Jin Kyun Oh, Jose Ronaldo Lima de Carvalho, Yan Nuzbrokh, Joseph Ryu, Teja Chemudupati, Vinit B. Mahajan, Janet R. Sparrow, Stephen H. Tsang; Retinal Manifestations of Mitochondrial Oxidative Phosphorylation Disorders. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2020;61(12):12. doi: https://doi.org/10.1167/iovs.61.12.12.
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The purpose of this paper was to discuss manifestations of primary mitochondrial dysfunctions and whether the retinal pigment epithelium or the photoreceptors are preferentially affected.
A retrospective analysis was performed of patients with clinically and laboratory confirmed diagnoses of maternally inherited diabetes and deafness (MIDD) or Kearns–Sayre syndrome (KSS). Patients underwent full ophthalmic examination, full-field electroretinogram, and multimodal imaging studies, including short-wavelength autofluorescence, spectral domain-optical coherence tomography, and color fundus photography.
A total of five patients with MIDD and four patients with KSS were evaluated at two tertiary referral centers. Mean age at initial evaluation was 50.3 years old. Nascent outer retinal tubulations corresponding with faint foci of autofluorescence were observed in two patients with MIDD. Characteristic features of this cohort included a foveal sparing phenotype observed in 13 of 18 eyes (72%), global absence of intraretinal pigment migration, and preserved retinal function on full-field electroretinogram testing in 12 of 16 eyes (75%). One patient diagnosed with MIDD presented with an unusual pattern of atrophy surrounding the parapapillary region and one patient with KSS presented with an atypical choroideremia-like phenotype.
MIDD and KSS are phenotypically heterogeneous disorders. Several features of disease suggest that primary mitochondrial dysfunction may first affect the retinal pigment epithelium followed by secondary photoreceptor loss. Similarities between primary mitochondrial degenerations and retinal disorders, such as age-related macular degeneration may suggest a primary role of mitochondria in the pathogenesis of these oligogenic disorders.
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