Germline variants in oculocutaneous albinism genes and predisposition to familial cutaneous melanoma

Vaishnavi Nathan, Peter A. Johansson, Jane M. Palmer, Madeleine Howlie, Hayley R. Hamilton, Karin Wadt, Göran Jönsson, Kelly M. Brooks, Antonia L. Pritchard, Nicholas K. Hayward

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

13 Citations (Scopus)


Approximately 1%–2% of cutaneous melanoma (CM) is classified as strongly familial. We sought to investigate unexplained CM predisposition in families negative for the known susceptibility genes using next-generation sequencing of affected individuals. Segregation of germline variants of interest within families was assessed by Sanger sequencing. Several heterozygous variants in oculocutaneous albinism (OCA) genes: TYR, OCA2, TYRP1 and SLC45A2, were present in our CM cohort. OCA is a group of autosomal recessive genetic disorders, resulting in pigmentation defects of the eyes, hair and skin. Missense variants classified as pathogenic for OCA were present in multiple families and some fully segregated with CM. The functionally compromised TYR p.T373K variant was present in three unrelated families. In OCA2, known pathogenic variants: p.V443I and p.N489D, were present in three families and one family, respectively. We identified a likely pathogenic SLC45A2 frameshift variant that fully segregated with CM in a family of four cases. Another four-case family harboured cosegregating variants (p.A24T and p.R153C) of uncertain functional significance in TYRP1. We conclude that rare, heterozygous variants in OCA genes confer moderate risk for CM.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)854-863
Number of pages10
JournalPigment Cell and Melanoma Research
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 24 Jun 2019


  • OCA
  • OCA2
  • SLC45A2
  • TYR
  • TYRP1
  • cutaneous melanoma
  • family genetics
  • oculocutaneous albinism
  • pigmentation


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