Enzyme replacement therapy for Fabry disease: Some answers but more questions

Division of Biochemical Diseases, Department of Paediatrics, BC Children's and Women's Hospital, University of British Columbia, Vancouver, BC, Canada
Therapeutics and Clinical Risk Management (Impact Factor: 1.47). 02/2011; 7:69-82. DOI: 10.2147/TCRM.S11987
Source: PubMed


Fabry disease (FD) is a multisystem, X-linked disorder of glycosphingolipid metabolism caused by enzyme deficiency of α-galactosidase A. Affected patients have symptoms including acroparesthesias, angiokeratomas, and hypohidrosis. More serious manifestations include debilitating pain and gastrointestinal symptoms, proteinuria and gradual deterioration of renal function leading to end-stage renal disease, hypertrophic cardiomyopathy, and stroke. Heterozygous females may have symptoms as severe as males with the classic phenotype. Before 2001, treatment of patients with FD was supportive. The successful development of enzyme replacement therapy (ERT) has been a great advancement in the treatment of patients with FD and can stabilize renal function and cardiac size, as well as improve pain and quality of life of patients with FD. In this review, we have provided a critical appraisal of the literature on the effects of ERT for FD. This analysis shows that data available on the treatment of FD are often derived from studies which are not controlled, rely on surrogate markers, and are of insufficient power to detect differences on hard clinical endpoints. Further studies of higher quality are needed to answer the questions that remain concerning the efficacy of ERT for FD.

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Available from: Majid Alfadhel
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    • "In most cases, it blocks the progression of the disease but it is not able to treat some symptoms. So it is important to diagnose early in the patient the disease and start the therapy, in order to prevent the most harmful consequences of the disease [10,11]. "
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    ABSTRACT: Fabry disease is an X-linked inherited metabolic condition where the deficit of the alpha-galactosidase A enzyme, encoded by the GLA gene, leads to glycosphingolipid storage, mainly globotriaosylceramide. To date, more than 600 mutations have been identified in human GLA gene that are responsible for FD, including missense and nonsense mutations, small and large deletions. Such mutations are usually inherited, and cases of de novo onset occur rarely. In this article we report an interesting case of a 44-year-old male patient suffering from a severe form of Fabry disease, with negative family history. The patient showed signs such as cornea verticillata, angiokeratomas, cardiac and neurological manifestations, an end-stage renal disease and he had low alpha-galactosidase A activity. We detected, in this subject, the mutation c.493 G > C in the third exon of the GLA gene which causes the amino acid substitution D165H in the protein. This mutation affects the amino acid - belonging to the group of buried residues - involved, probably, in the preservation of the protein folding. Moreover, studies of multiple sequence alignment indicate that this amino acid is highly conserved, thus strengthening the hypothesis that it is a key amino acid to the enzyme functionality.The study of the relatives of the patient showed that, surprisingly, none of the members of his family of origin had this genetic alteration, suggesting a de novo mutation. Only his 11-year-old daughter - showing acroparaesthesias and heat intolerance with reduced enzymatic activity - had the same mutation. We suggest that a non-inherited mutation of the alpha-galactosidase A gene is responsible for Fabry disease in the patient who had reduced enzyme activity and classical clinical manifestations of the disease. In a family, it is rare to find only one Fabry disease affected subject with a de novo mutation. These findings emphasize the importance of early diagnosis, genetic counselling, studying the genealogical tree of the patients and starting enzyme replacement therapy to prevent irreversible vital organ damage that occurs during the course of the disease.
    Full-text · Article · Jan 2014 · BMC Research Notes
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    • "Anderson Fabry disease (FD) (OMIM 301500) is an X-linked inherited sphingolipid storage disorder caused by deficiency of lysosomal enzyme alpha-galactosidase A (GLA). This illness is characterized by progressive accumulation of glycosphingolipids, mainly globotriaosylceramide (Gb3), in lysosomes in a variety of cell types, including renal cells, myocardial cells, heart valve fibrocytes, nervous system cells, and endothelial cells of blood vessels [1-7]. "
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    ABSTRACT: Cerebral vasculopathy have been described in Fabry disease, in which altered cerebral blood flow, vascular remodelling or impairment of endothelial function could be involved. Our study aims to evaluate these three possibilities in a group of Fabry patients, and compare it to healthy controls. Cerebral hemodynamics, vascular remodelling and systemic endothelial function were investigated in 10 Fabry patients and compared to data from 17 healthy controls. Transcranial Doppler was used to study blood flow velocity of intracranial arteries and cerebral vasomotor reactivity. For the study of vascular remodelling and endothelial function, intima-media thickness of common carotid arteries, flow-mediated dilation in brachial artery and serum levels of soluble VCAM-1, TNF-alpha, high-sensitive CRP and IL-6 were measured. Differences between groups were evaluated using appropriate tests. No relevant differences were observed in cerebral hemodynamic parameters, intima-media thickness or flow-mediated dilation. There was a trend for low serum levels of IL-6 and high serum levels of TNF-alpha and high-sensitive CRP in Fabry patients; plasma concentrations of soluble VCAM-1 were significantly higher in Fabry disease patients than in healthy volunteers (p = 0.02). In our sample, we did not find relevant alterations of cerebral hemodynamics in Fabry disease patients. Increased levels of plasmatic endothelial biomarkers seem to be the most important feature indicative of possible vascular dysfunction in Fabry disease patients.
    Full-text · Article · Nov 2013 · BMC Neurology
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    • "Treatment with life-long enzyme replacement therapy (ERT) infusions is available [2,3]. However, due to concerns regarding convenience, cost and incomplete effects on disease progression, unmet medical needs remain and other treatments are under investigation [1,4]. "
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    ABSTRACT: Background: Fabry disease (FD) is a genetic disorder resulting from deficiency of the lysosomal enzyme α-galactosidase A (α-Gal A), which leads to globotriaosylceramide (GL-3) accumulation in multiple tissues. We report on the safety and pharmacodynamics of migalastat hydrochloride, an investigational pharmacological chaperone given orally at 150 mg every-other-day. Methods: Two open-label uncontrolled phase 2 studies of 12 and 24 weeks (NCT00283959 and NCT00283933) in 9 males with FD were combined. At multiple time points, α-Gal A activity and GL-3 levels were quantified in blood cells, kidney and skin. GL-3 levels were also evaluated through skin and renal histology. Results: Compared to baseline, increased α-Gal A activity of at least 50% was demonstrated in blood, skin and kidney in 6 of 9 patients. Patients' increased α-Gal A activities paralleled the α-Gal A increases observed in vitro in HEK-293 cells transfected with the corresponding mutant form of the enzyme. The same 6 patients who demonstrated increases of α-Gal A activity also had GL-3 reduction in skin, urine and/or kidney, and had α-Gal A mutations that responded in transfected cells incubated with the drug. The 3 patients who did not show a consistent response in vivo had α-Gal A mutations that did not respond to migalastat HCl in transfected cells. Migalastat HCl was well tolerated. Conclusions: Migalastat HCl is a candidate pharmacological chaperone that provides a novel genotype-specific treatment for FD. It enhanced α-Gal A activity and resulted in GL-3 substrate decrease in patients with responsive GLA mutations. Phase 3 studies are ongoing.
    Full-text · Article · Nov 2012 · Orphanet Journal of Rare Diseases
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