Oculocutaneous Albinism

National Organization for Rare Disorders, Inc.

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Important
It is possible that the main title of the report Oculocutaneous Albinism is not the name you expected.

Disorder Subdivisions

  • None

General Discussion

Oculocutaneous albinism (OCA) is a group of rare inherited disorders characterized by a reduction or complete lack of melanin pigment in the skin, hair and eyes. These conditions are caused by mutations in specific genes that are necessary for the production of melanin pigment in specialized cells called melanocytes. Absent or insufficient melanin pigment results in abnormal development of the eyes, resulting in vision abnormalities, and light skin that is very susceptible to damage from the sun including skin cancer. Visual changes include nystagmus (involuntary side to side eye movement), strabismus and photophobia (sensitivity to light). Other changes include foveal hypoplasia (which affects visual acuity) and mis-routing of the optic nerves. All individuals with OCA have the above visual changes but the amount of skin, hair and iris pigment can vary depending on the gene (or type of OCA) and mutation involved.

There are seven types of OCA (OCA1-7) caused by mutations in seven different genes. Oculocutaneous albinism is inherited as an autosomal recessive genetic condition.

Supporting Organizations

Albinism Fellowship

P.O. Box 77
Burnley
Lancashire, BB11 5GN
United Kingdom
Tel: 7919543518
Tel: 447919543518
Email: support@albinism.org.uk
Website: http://www.albinism.org.uk

Genetic and Rare Diseases (GARD) Information Center

PO Box 8126
Gaithersburg, MD 20898-8126
Tel: (301)251-4925
Fax: (301)251-4911
Tel: (888)205-2311
Website: http://rarediseases.info.nih.gov/GARD/

March of Dimes

1275 Mamaroneck Avenue
White Plains, NY 10605
Tel: (914)997-4488
Fax: (914)997-4763
Email: AskUs@marchofdimes.org or preguntas@nacersano.org
Website: http://www.marchofdimes.org and nacersano.org

NIH/National Institute of Child Health and Human Development

31 Center Dr
Building 31, Room 2A32
Bethesda, MD 20892
Fax: (866)760-5947
Tel: (800)370-2943
Email: NICHDInformationResourceCenter@mail.nih.gov
Website: http://www.nichd.nih.gov/

National Organization for Albinism and Hypopigmentation (NOAH)

PO Box 959
East Hempstead, NH 03826-0959
Tel: (603)887-2310
Fax: (800)648-2310
Tel: (800)473-2310
Email: noah@albinism.org
Website: http://www.albinism.org

For a Complete Report

This is an abstract of a report from the National Organization for Rare Disorders (NORD). For a full-text version of this report, go to www.rarediseases.org and click on Rare Disease Database under "Rare Disease Information".

The information provided in this report is not intended for diagnostic purposes. It is provided for informational purposes only.

It is possible that the title of this topic is not the name you selected. Please check the Synonyms listing to find the alternate name(s) and Disorder Subdivision(s) covered by this report.

This disease entry is based upon medical information available through the date at the end of the topic. Since NORD's resources are limited, it is not possible to keep every entry in the Rare Disease Database completely current and accurate. Please check with the agencies listed in the Resources section for the most current information about this disorder.

Last Updated:  8/18/2015
Copyright  2015 National Organization for Rare Disorders, Inc.