Current and Emerging Treatments for Albinism
journal contributionposted on 2020-11-23, 17:12 authored by Siyin Liu, Helen J Kuht, Emily Haejoon Moon, Gail DE Maconachie, Mervyn G Thomas
Albinism is a group of rare inherited disorders arising from impairment of melanin biosynthesis. The reduction of melanin synthesis leads to hypopigmentation of skin and eyes. A wide range of ophthalmic manifestations arise from albinism, including reduction of visual acuity, nystagmus, strabismus, iris translucency, foveal hypoplasia, fundus hypopigmentation, and abnormal decussation of retinal ganglion cell axons at the optic chiasm. Currently, albinism is incurable, and treatment aims either surgically or pharmacologically to optimize vision and protect skin; however, novel therapies that aim to directly address the molecular errors of albinism, such as L-dihydroxyphenylalanine (L-DOPA) and nitisinone, are being developed and have entered human trials though with limited success. Experimental gene-based strategies for editing the genetic errors in albinism have also met early success in animal models. The emergence of these new therapeutic modalities represents a new era in the management of albinism. We focus on the known genetic subtypes, clinical assessment, existing and emerging therapeutic options for the non-syndromic forms of albinism.
Author affiliationDepartment of Neuroscience, Psychology and Behaviour
- AM (Accepted Manuscript)