PAX6 aniridia syndrome: clinics, genetics, and therapeutics

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Purpose of reviewAniridia is a rare and panocular disorder affecting most of the ocular structures which may have significant impact on vision. The purpose of this review is to describe the clinical features, genetics, and therapeutic options for this disease and to provide an update of current knowledge and latest research findings.Recent findingsAside from the ocular features, a variety of associated systemic abnormalities, including hormonal, metabolic, gastrointestinal, genitourinary, and neurologic pathologies have been reported in children with aniridia. Although mutations in PAX6 are a major cause of aniridia, genetic defects in nearby genes, such as TRIM44 or ELP4, have also been reported to cause aniridia. Recent improvement in genetic testing technique will help more rapid and precise diagnosis for aniridia. A promising therapeutic approach called nonsense suppression therapy has been introduced and successfully used in an animal model.SummaryAniridia is a challenging disease. The progressive nature of this condition and its potential complications require continuous and life-long ophthalmologic care. Genetic diagnosis for aniridia is important for establishing definitive molecular characterization as well as identifying individuals at high risk for Wilms tumor. Recent advancement in understanding the genetic pathogenesis of this disease offers promise for the approaches to treatment.

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