PURPOSE. Fibroblast growth factor-10 (FGF10) can modulate extracellular matrix associated genes and, therefore, it could be a myopia susceptibility gene. This study used an animal model, single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) association, and genetic functional assay to evaluate FGF10 gene for myopia. METHODS. The expression levels of FGF10 gene were compared among the form deprivation myopic (FDM) eyes, the fellow eyes of the FDM group, and the healthy eyes of experimental mice. In the present study 1020 cases (≤-6.0 diopters [D]) and 960 controls (≥-1.5 D) were enrolled from a Chinese population. Eight tagging SNPs were genotyped to test for an association between genotypes and myopia. The luciferase reporter assay was conducted for the particular SNP to assess the allelic effect on gene expression. RESULTS. The sclera of FDM eyes had a 2.57-fold higher level of FGF10 mRNA (P = 0.018) than the fellow eyes. Although no SNP was associated with high myopia, SNP rs339501 was significantly associated with extreme myopia (≤-10 D, P = 0.008) and the odds ratio (OR) was 1.58 for G allele carriers. The luciferase assay showed that the risk G allele significantly caused a higher expression level than the A allele (P = 0.011). CONCLUSIONS. The evidence suggested FGF10 to be a risk factor for myopia. The sclera of myopic eyes had higher FGF10 levels. The risk G allele of SNP rs339501 was associated with extreme myopia in human and caused a higher gene expression in the luciferase assay. It is concluded that the FGF10 could have been involved in the development of myopia.
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