J Neurol Sci. 2017 Nov 15;382:29-35. doi: 10.1016/j.jns.2017.09.018. Epub 2017 Sep 14.
Mutations in OPA1 are responsible of 32-89% cases of Autosomal Dominant Optic Atrophy (ADOA). OPA1 ADOA usually presents in childhood with bilateral, progressive visual loss due to retinal ganglion cells neurodegeneration, but environmental factors are supposed to influence onset and phenotype. Sixty Italian OPA1 mutations carriers (fifty-two symptomatic), belonging to thirteen families, underwent neuro-ophthalmologic evaluation. Visual acuity (n=60) and Optical Coherence Tomography (OCT) (n=12) were compared in missense mutations (OPA-M) versus haploinsufficiency-inducing mutations (OPA-H) and correlated with age. Presence of plus phenotypes was investigated. We found four known mutations, the most common being missense c.1034G>A, and a new missense mutation, c1193A>C, the latter in a 54-yrs old female with late-onset phenotype. Visual acuity, colour sensitivity, and optic disc atrophy were sensitive indicators of disease. OCT RNFL thickness was reduced in OPA1 compared to controls. OPA-M showed worst visual acuity than OPA-H, but not more frequent plus-phenotype, observed only in four OPA-H patients. In both groups, visual acuity worsened with age. Our data confirm worst vision in OPA-M, but not increased plus-phenotype. Since most patients belonged to nine families from south-eastern Sicily (a famous region for the cult of St. Lucy, patron of the blinds) local genetic and environmental factors might have accounted for the low occurrence of plus-phenotypes.