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South African scientists have identified a genetic mutation that causes retinitis pigmentosis, a hereditary condition that leads to night blindness and gradual loss of peripheral vision.

Writing in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, a team of researchers from the University of South Africa report the discovery of the so-called CA4 gene mutation that causes the disease.

They hope that their findings will help develop treatments and maybe even a cure for the disease, which affects about one in 3,000 South Africans.

Link to full news story in Business Day

Link to abstract of paper in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences