Ophthalmic Features of Minimal Pigment Oculocutaneous Albinism

C. Gail Summers, Richard A. King

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

18 Scopus citations


Purpose: The purpose of this study is to describe the heterogeneous phenotype of individuals with an unusual type of albinism—minimal pigment oculocutaneous albinism. Methods: Nine patients with minimal pigment oculocutaneous albinism were identified and followed for up to 11 years. The criteria were the presence of oculocutaneous albinism in association with low hairbulb tyrosinase activity in the patient and disparate activity in the parents with one parent having normal activity and the other having low tyrosinase activity. Changes in skin, hair, and ocular pigment were followed as the patients matured. As a measure of ocular pigment, iris transillumination and macular transparency were graded according to a previously published scheme. Results: Patients were born with white scalp hair and skin, and nystagmus developed. Visual acuity was reduced to 20/50 to 20/200 for the group, but in one patient vision improved with maturity. Irides were blue. In seven patients, iris pigment developed, which was detected by transillumination with slit-lamp biomicroscopy, including the one patient with improved visual acuity. All patients had foveal hypoplasia, and melanin pigment in the fundi could not be detected by clinical examination. Visual acuity in the group did not correlate directly with the presence or development of iris transillumination or macular transparency. The pedigrees were consistent with an autosomal recessive inheritance pattern. Conclusion: This unique type of oculocutaneous albinism has heterogeneous clinical features. Minimal pigment oculocutaneous albinism appears to represent a new type of tyrosinase-related oculocutaneous albinism (OCA1MP).

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)906-914
Number of pages9
Issue number5
StatePublished - 1994


Dive into the research topics of 'Ophthalmic Features of Minimal Pigment Oculocutaneous Albinism'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this