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Genetic and Rare Diseases Information Center (GARD)

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Cone dystrophy

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Cone dystrophy is a general term for a group of rare eye disorders that affect the cone cells of the retina. Cone cells allow a person to see color and fine detail, and they work best in bright light. The cone dystrophies can cause a variety of symptoms such as decreased visual clarity when looking straight ahead, a reduced ability to see colors, and an increased sensitivity to light.[1] There are two main subtypes of cone dystrophy, called stationary cone dystrophy and progressive cone dystrophy. The age when symptoms begin, the type and severity of symptoms, and the progression of symptoms are all very different between individuals, even between people with the same type of cone dystrophy.[1] Mutations in many genes have been found to cause cone dystrophy, and the condition can be inherited in an autosomal dominant, autosomal recessive, or x-linked manner.[2]
Last updated: 7/1/2013


  1. Cone Dystrophy. NORD. 2010; Accessed 6/19/2013.
  2. Simunovic, M.P., Moore, A.T. The cone dystrophies. Royal College of Ophthalmologists. 1998; Accessed 6/19/2013.
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  • Orphanet is a European reference portal for information on rare diseases and orphan drugs.  Access to this database is free of charge.
  • PubMed is a searchable database of medical literature and lists journal articles that discuss Cone dystrophy. Click on the link to view a sample search on this topic.