Publications by authors named "Robin H Lachmann"

46 Publications

Long-term efficacy of olipudase alfa in adults with acid sphingomyelinase deficiency (ASMD): Further clearance of hepatic sphingomyelin is associated with additional improvements in pro- and anti-atherogenic lipid profiles after 42 months of treatment.

Mol Genet Metab 2020 Sep - Oct;131(1-2):245-252. Epub 2020 Jun 24.

Clinical Development, Sanofi Genzyme, Cambridge, MA, United States of America.

The liver is a major site of lipoprotein synthesis and metabolism. Liver manifestations of chronic visceral ASMD include hepatomegaly, fibrosis, elevated liver enzymes and a pro-atherogenic lipid profile. Measurements of sphingomyelin (SM) levels in liver biopsies and lyso-SM in plasma were used as pharmacodynamic biomarkers. Five adult patients with chronic visceral ASMD were enrolled in a 26-week phase 1b trial of enzyme replacement therapy (ERT) with olipudase alfa (NCT01722526) followed by an ongoing long-term extension study (NCT02004704). We compare the changes in hepatic SM levels, plasma lyso-SM, and lipoprotein profiles after 42 months of treatment. Progressive clearance of histologic SM storage was observed throughout the trial, along with similar reductions in plasma lyso-SM. Improvements in liver enzymes were observed at 6 months and remained stable at 42 months. Progressive reductions from baseline in pro-atherogenic lipid profiles (total cholesterol, LDL-C, VLDL-C, triglycerides) were observed at month 6 and 42. Conversely, there were progressive increases in anti-atherogenic markers, HDL-C and apolipoprotein A-I, with HDL-C increases up to 200% over baseline levels after 42 months of treatment. These data demonstrate that hepatic clearance of SM during olipudase alfa treatment over 42 months is associated with overall improvements in the lipid profiles of ASMD patients. The clinical relevance of these findings needs to be determined in the future, but we speculate that these improvements may reduce the risk for liver cirrhosis and cardiovascular disease. Trial registration: Clintrials.gov trial registration # NCT01722526.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ymgme.2020.06.010DOI Listing
June 2020

Treating lysosomal storage disorders: What have we learnt?

Authors:
Robin H Lachmann

J Inherit Metab Dis 2020 01 26;43(1):125-132. Epub 2019 Jun 26.

Charles Dent Metabolic Unit, National Hospital for Neurology and Neurosurgery, London, UK.

The first enzyme replacement therapy (ERT) for a lysosomal storage disorder (LSD) was approved in 1991 and we now have more than 25 years of experience of treating patients with type 1 Gaucher disease. Because of the remarkable success of this therapy, enormous effort and resource has gone into developing other ERTs, for Gaucher (where three different enzyme preparations have now been approved) and for other LSDs. We now have more than 10 years of clinical experience in using ERT to treat Gaucher, Fabry, Pompe and MPS I, II, and VI. This article aims to assess the real-life experience of a selection of these innovative and expensive treatments to see if they have met the high expectations which were set for them when they launched.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/jimd.12131DOI Listing
January 2020

Movement disorders and nonmotor neuropsychological symptoms in children and adults with classical galactosemia.

J Inherit Metab Dis 2019 05 27;42(3):451-458. Epub 2019 Feb 27.

Department of Neurology, University Medical Center Groningen, University of Groningen, Groningen, The Netherlands.

Although movement disorders (MDs) are known complications, the exact frequency and severity remains uncertain in patients with classical galactosemia, especially in children. We determined the frequency, classification and severity of MDs in a cohort of pediatric and adult galactosemia patients, and assessed the association with nonmotor neuropsychological symptoms and daily functioning. Patients from seven centers in the United Kingdom and the Netherlands with a confirmed galactosemia diagnosis were invited to participate. A videotaped neurological examination was performed and an expert panel scored the presence, classification and severity of MDs. Disease characteristics, nonmotor neuropsychological symptoms, and daily functioning were evaluated with structured interviews and validated questionnaires (Achenbach, Vineland, Health Assessment Questionnaire, SIP68). We recruited 37 patients; 19 adults (mean age 32.6 years) and 18 children (mean age 10.7 years). Subjective self-reports revealed motor symptoms in 19/37 (51.4%), similar to the objective (video) assessment, with MDs in 18/37 patients (48.6%). The objective severity scores were moderate to severe in one third (6/37). Dystonia was the overall major feature, with additional tremor in adults, and myoclonus in children. Behavioral or psychiatric problems were present in 47.2%, mostly internalizing problems, and associated with MDs. Daily functioning was significantly impaired in the majority of patients. Only one patient received symptomatic treatment for MDs. We show that MDs and nonmotor neuropsychological symptoms are frequent in both children and adults with classical galactosemia.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/jimd.12054DOI Listing
May 2019

The neurological and psychological phenotype of adult patients with early-treated phenylketonuria: A systematic review.

J Inherit Metab Dis 2019 03;42(2):209-219

Division of Inborn Metabolic Diseases, Department of Paediatrics, University Hospital, Padua, Italy.

Newborn screening for phenylketonuria (PKU) and early introduction of dietary therapy has been remarkably successful in preventing the severe neurological features of PKU, including mental retardation and epilepsy. However, concerns remain that long-term outcome is still suboptimal, particularly in adult patients who are no longer on strict phenylalanine-restricted diets. With our systematic literature review we aimed to describe the neurological phenotype of adults with early-treated phenylketonuria (ETPKU). The literature search covered the period from 1 January 1990 up to 16 April 2018, using the NLM MEDLINE controlled vocabulary. Of the 643 records initially identified, 83 were included in the analysis. The most commonly reported neurological signs were tremor and hyperreflexia. The overall quality of life (QoL) of ETPKU adults was good or comparable to control populations, and there was no evidence for a significant incidence of psychiatric disease or social difficulties. Neuroimaging revealed that brain abnormalities are present in ETPKU adults, but their clinical significance remains unclear. Generally, intelligence quotient (IQ) appears normal but specific deficits in neuropsychological and social functioning were reported in early-treated adults compared with healthy individuals. However, accurately defining the prevalence of these deficits is complicated by the lack of standardized neuropsychological tests. Future research should employ standardized neurological, neuropsychological, and neuroimaging protocols, and consider other techniques such as advanced imaging analyses and the recently validated PKU-specific QoL questionnaire, to precisely define the nature of the impairments within the adult ETPKU population and how these relate to metabolic control throughout life.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/jimd.12065DOI Listing
March 2019

A Randomized, Double-Blind, Placebo-Controlled, Phase 3 Trial Evaluating the Efficacy of Burosumab, an Anti-FGF23 Antibody, in Adults With X-Linked Hypophosphatemia: Week 24 Primary Analysis.

J Bone Miner Res 2018 08 26;33(8):1383-1393. Epub 2018 Jun 26.

Yale School of Medicine, New Haven, CT, USA.

In X-linked hypophosphatemia (XLH), inherited loss-of-function mutations in the PHEX gene cause excess circulating levels of fibroblast growth factor 23 (FGF23), leading to lifelong renal phosphate wasting and hypophosphatemia. Adults with XLH present with chronic musculoskeletal pain and stiffness, short stature, lower limb deformities, fractures, and pseudofractures due to osteomalacia, accelerated osteoarthritis, dental abscesses, and enthesopathy. Burosumab, a fully human monoclonal antibody, binds and inhibits FGF23 to correct hypophosphatemia. This report summarizes results from a double-blind, placebo-controlled, phase 3 trial of burosumab in symptomatic adults with XLH. Participants with hypophosphatemia and pain were assigned 1:1 to burosumab 1 mg/kg (n = 68) or placebo (n = 66) subcutaneously every 4 weeks (Q4W) and were comparable at baseline. Across midpoints of dosing intervals, 94.1% of burosumab-treated participants attained mean serum phosphate concentration above the lower limit of normal compared with 7.6% of those receiving placebo (p < 0.001). Burosumab significantly reduced the Western Ontario and the McMaster Universities Osteoarthritis Index (WOMAC) stiffness subscale compared with placebo (least squares [LS] mean ± standard error [SE] difference, -8.1 ± 3.24; p = 0.012). Reductions in WOMAC physical function subscale (-4.9 ± 2.48; p = 0.048) and Brief Pain Inventory worst pain (-0.5 ± 0.28; p = 0.092) did not achieve statistical significance after Hochberg multiplicity adjustment. At week 24, 43.1% (burosumab) and 7.7% (placebo) of baseline active fractures were fully healed; the odds of healed fracture in the burosumab group was 16.8-fold greater than that in the placebo group (p < 0.001). Biochemical markers of bone formation and resorption increased significantly from baseline with burosumab treatment compared with placebo. The safety profile of burosumab was similar to placebo. There were no treatment-related serious adverse events or meaningful changes from baseline in serum or urine calcium, intact parathyroid hormone, or nephrocalcinosis. These data support the conclusion that burosumab is a novel therapeutic addressing an important medical need in adults with XLH.© 2018 The Authors. Journal of Bone and Mineral Research Published by Wiley Periodicals, Inc.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/jbmr.3475DOI Listing
August 2018

Proposed Stages of Myocardial Phenotype Development in Fabry Disease.

JACC Cardiovasc Imaging 2019 08 16;12(8 Pt 2):1673-1683. Epub 2018 May 16.

Cardiology Department, Barts Heart Centre, London, United Kingdom; Institute of Cardiovascular Science, University College London, London, United Kingdom. Electronic address:

Objectives: This study sought to explore the Fabry myocardium in relation to storage, age, sex, structure, function, electrocardiogram changes, blood biomarkers, and inflammation/fibrosis.

Background: Fabry disease (FD) is a rare, x-linked lysosomal storage disorder. Mortality is mainly cardiovascular with men exhibiting cardiac symptoms earlier than women. By cardiovascular magnetic resonance, native T1 is low in FD because of sphingolipid accumulation.

Methods: A prospective, observational study of 182 FD (167 adults, 15 children; mean age 42 ± 17 years, 37% male) who underwent cardiovascular magnetic resonance including native T1, late gadolinium enhancement (LGE), and extracellular volume fraction, 12-lead electrocardiogram, and blood biomarkers (troponin and N-terminal pro-brain natriuretic peptide).

Results: In children, T1 was never below the normal range, but was lower with age (9 ms/year, r = -0.78 children; r = -0.41 whole cohort; both p < 0.001). Over the whole cohort, the T1 reduction with age was greater and more marked in men (men: -1.9 ms/year, r = -0.51, p < 0.001; women: -1.4 ms/year, r = -0.47 women, p < 0.001). Left ventricular hypertrophy (LVH), LGE, and electrocardiogram abnormalities occur earlier in men. Once LVH occurs, T1 demonstrates major sex dimorphism: with increasing LVH in women, T1 and LVH become uncorrelated (r = -0.239, p = 0.196) but in men, the correlation reverses and T1 increases (toward normal) with LVH (r = 0.631, p < 0.001), a U-shaped relationship of T1 to indexed left ventricular mass in men.

Conclusions: These data suggest that myocyte storage starts in childhood and accumulates faster in men before triggering 2 processes: a sex-independent scar/inflammation regional response (LGE) and, in men, apparent myocyte hypertrophy diluting the T1 lowering of sphingolipid.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jcmg.2018.03.020DOI Listing
August 2019

Increased resting cerebral blood flow in adult Fabry disease: MRI arterial spin labeling study.

Neurology 2018 04 21;90(16):e1379-e1385. Epub 2018 Mar 21.

From the Stroke Research Centre, Department of Brain Repair and Rehabilitation (P.P., A.M., I.D., X.G., D.J.W.), UCL Institute of Neurology; Charles Dent Metabolic Unit (A.M., E.M., R.H.L.), National Hospital for Neurology and Neurosurgery, London; Beaumont Hospital and Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland (A.M.), Beaumont, Dublin; Academic Department of Neuroradiology (I.D., X.G.), Department of Brain Repair and Rehabilitation, UCL Institute of Neurology, National Hospital for Neurology and Neurosurgery, London; Department of Neuropsychology (F.B., L.C.), National Hospital for Neurology and Neurosurgery; Department of Biostatistics (F.J.), UCL and University College London Hospitals; Department of Neuroinflammation (C.W.-K.), UCL Institute of Neurology; and Lysosomal Storage Disorders Unit (D.H.), Royal Free Hospital, London, UK.

Objective: To assess resting cerebral blood flow (CBF) in the whole-brain and cerebral white matter (WM) and gray matter (GM) of adults with Fabry disease (FD), using arterial spin labeling (ASL) MRI, and to investigate CBF correlations with WM hyperintensity (WMH) volume and the circulating biomarker lyso-Gb3.

Methods: This cross-sectional, case-control study included 25 patients with genetically confirmed FD and 18 age-matched healthy controls. We quantified resting CBF using Quantitative Signal Targeting With Alternating Radiofrequency Labeling of Arterial Regions (QUASAR) ASL MRI. We measured WMH volume using semiautomated software. We measured CBF in regions of interest in whole-brain, WM, and deep GM, and assessed correlations with WMH volume and plasma lyso-Gb3.

Results: The mean age (% male) for FD and healthy controls was 42.2 years (44%) and 37.1 years (50%). Mean whole-brain CBF was 27.56 mL/100 mL/min (95% confidence interval [CI] 23.78-31.34) for FD vs 22.39 mL/100 mL/min (95% CI 20.08-24.70) for healthy controls, = 0.03. In WM, CBF was higher in FD (22.42 mL/100 mL/min [95% CI 17.72-27.12] vs 16.25 mL/100 mL/min [95% CI 14.03-18.48], = 0.05). In deep GM, CBF was similar between groups (40.41 mL/100 mL/min [95% CI 36.85-43.97] for FD vs 37.46 mL/100 mL/min [95% CI 32.57-42.35], = 0.38). In patients with FD with WMH (n = 20), whole-brain CBF correlated with WMH volume ( = 0.59, = 0.006), not with plasma lyso-Gb3.

Conclusion: In FD, resting CBF is increased in WM but not deep GM. In FD, CBF correlates with WMH, suggesting that cerebral perfusion changes might contribute to, or result from, WM injury.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1212/WNL.0000000000005330DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5902785PMC
April 2018

Outcome of adult patients with X-linked hypophosphatemia caused by PHEX gene mutations.

J Inherit Metab Dis 2018 09 19;41(5):865-876. Epub 2018 Feb 19.

Charles Dent Metabolic Unit, National Hospital for Neurology and Neurosurgery, Queen Square, London, WC1N 3BG, UK.

X-linked hypophosphatemia (XLH) is the most common monogenic disorder causing hypophosphatemia. This case-note review documents the clinical features and the complications of treatment in 59 adults (19 male, 40 female) with XLH. XLH is associated with a large number of private mutations; 37 different mutations in the PHEX gene were identified in this cohort, 14 of which have not been previously reported. Orthopaedic involvement requiring surgical intervention (osteotomy) was frequent. Joint replacement and decompressive laminectomy were observed in those older than 40 years. Dental disease (63%), nephrocalcinosis (42%), and hearing impairment (14%) were also common. The rarity of the disease and the large number of variants make it difficult to discern specific genotype-phenotype relationships. A new treatment, an anti-FGF23 antibody, that may affect the natural history of the disease is currently being investigated in clinical trials.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s10545-018-0147-6DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6133187PMC
September 2018

GYG1 causing progressive limb girdle myopathy with onset during teenage years (polyglucosan body myopathy 2).

Neuromuscul Disord 2018 04 10;28(4):346-349. Epub 2018 Jan 10.

MRC Centre for Neuromuscular Disease and Division of Neuropathology, UCL Institute of Neurology, National Hospital for Neurology and Neurosurgery, London, UK.

An 84-year-old lady with slowly progressive limb and axial muscle weakness with onset in her teens was referred for genetic investigations. Targeted next generation sequencing (NGS) revealed a homozygous mutation GYG1 in exon5:c.487delG:p.D163fs, confirming the diagnosis of Polyglucosan Body Myopathy 2 (PGBM2). Retrospective review of muscle pathology revealed a florid vacuolar myopathy with histochemical and ultrastructural features consistent with a polyglucosan storage myopathy. No cardiac symptoms were reported. Our case is consistent with the core phenotype of GYG1-related PGBM2 apart from an early onset of weakness without cardiac symptoms. The presence of α-amylase resistant PAS-positive material in skeletal muscle biopsy of patients with slowly progressive limb girdle muscle weakness should prompt the search for GYG1 mutations. This case highlights the combined role of muscle pathology and NGS in the molecular resolution of patients with undiagnosed neuromuscular conditions.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.nmd.2018.01.002DOI Listing
April 2018

Olipudase alfa for treatment of acid sphingomyelinase deficiency (ASMD): safety and efficacy in adults treated for 30 months.

J Inherit Metab Dis 2018 09 5;41(5):829-838. Epub 2018 Jan 5.

Clinical Development, Rare Diseases, Sanofi Genzyme, 1, Avenue Pierre Brossolette, 91385, Chilly-Mazarin, France.

Olipudase alfa, a recombinant human acid sphingomyelinase (ASM), is an enzyme replacement therapy for the treatment of nonneurologic manifestations of acid sphingomyelinase deficiency (ASMD). This ongoing, open-label, long-term study (NCT02004704) assessed safety and efficacy of olipudase alfa following 30 months of treatment in five adult patients with ASMD. There were no deaths, serious or severe events, or discontinuations during 30 months of treatment. The majority of adverse events were mild and included headache, nausea, and abdominal pain. No patient developed anti-drug antibodies and there were no clinically significant adverse changes in vital signs, hematology, or cardiac safety parameters. Statistically significant reductions in liver (31%) and spleen (39%) volumes were maintained through 30 months of treatment. There was a mean increase in lung diffusing capacity of 35%, and clinically relevant improvements in infiltrative lung disease parameters. Lipid profiles improved in all patients. Improvements in bone mineral density of the spine were observed in some patients. Chitotriosidase in serum and lyso-sphingomyelin in dried blood spots decreased with olipudase alfa treatment, suggesting utility as biomarkers for monitoring treatment efficacy. Olipudase alfa is the first etiology-specific treatment in development for ASMD. This study demonstrates that treatment with olipudase alfa for 30 months is well-tolerated and associated with life-transforming sustained improvements in relevant disease clinical measures.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s10545-017-0123-6DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6133173PMC
September 2018

Homocysteine and methylmalonate: when should I measure them and what do they mean?

Pract Neurol 2016 Aug 23;16(4):328-33. Epub 2016 Mar 23.

Charles Dent Metabolic Unit, National Hospital for Neurology and Neurosurgery, London, UK.

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http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/practneurol-2015-001320DOI Listing
August 2016

Impaired antibacterial autophagy links granulomatous intestinal inflammation in Niemann-Pick disease type C1 and XIAP deficiency with NOD2 variants in Crohn's disease.

Gut 2017 06 7;66(6):1060-1073. Epub 2016 Mar 7.

Translational Gastroenterology Unit, University of Oxford, Oxford, UK.

Objective: Patients with Niemann-Pick disease type C1 (NPC1), a lysosomal lipid storage disorder that causes neurodegeneration and liver damage, can present with IBD, but neither the significance nor the functional mechanism of this association is clear. We studied bacterial handling and antibacterial autophagy in patients with NPC1.

Design: We characterised intestinal inflammation in 14 patients with NPC1 who developed IBD. We investigated bacterial handling and cytokine production of NPC1 monocytes or macrophages in vitro and compared NPC1-associated functional defects to those caused by IBD-associated nucleotide-binding oligomerization domain-containing protein 2 (NOD2) variants or mutations in X-linked inhibitor of apoptosis (XIAP).

Results: Patients with the lysosomal lipid storage disorder NPC1 have increased susceptibility to early-onset fistulising colitis with granuloma formation, reminiscent of Crohn's disease (CD). Mutations in NPC1 cause impaired autophagy due to defective autophagosome function that abolishes NOD2-mediated bacterial handling in vitro similar to variants in NOD2 or XIAP deficiency. In contrast to genetic NOD2 and XIAP variants, NPC1 mutations do not impair NOD2-receptor-interacting kinase 2 (RIPK2)-XIAP-dependent cytokine production. Pharmacological activation of autophagy can rescue bacterial clearance in macrophages in vitro by increasing the autophagic flux and bypassing defects in NPC1.

Conclusions: NPC1 confers increased risk of early-onset severe CD. Our data support the concept that genetic defects at different checkpoints of selective autophagy cause a shared outcome of CD-like immunopathology linking monogenic and polygenic forms of IBD. Muramyl dipeptide-driven cytokine responses and antibacterial autophagy induction are parallel and independent signalling cascades downstream of the NOD2-RIPK2-XIAP complex.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/gutjnl-2015-310382DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5532464PMC
June 2017

Urinary excretion and metabolism of miglustat and valproate in patients with Niemann-Pick type C1 disease: One- and two-dimensional solution-state (1)H NMR studies.

J Pharm Biomed Anal 2016 Jan 13;117:276-88. Epub 2015 Aug 13.

Leicester School of Pharmacy, De Montfort University, The Gateway, Leicester LE1 9BH, UK. Electronic address:

Niemann-Pick type C1 (NP-C1) disease is a neurodegenerative lysosomal storage disease for which the only approved therapy is miglustat (MGS). In this study we explored the applications and value of both one- and two-dimensional high-resolution NMR analysis strategies to the detection and quantification of MGS and its potential metabolites in urine samples collected from NP-C1 disease patients (n=47), and also applied these techniques to the analysis of the anticonvulsant drug valproate and one of its major metabolites in ca. 30% of these samples (i.e. from those who were also receiving this agent for the control of epileptic seizures). A combination of high-resolution 1D and 2D TOCSY/NOESY techniques confirmed the identity of MGS in the urinary (1)H NMR profiles of NP-C1 patients treated with this agent (n=25), and its quantification was readily achievable via electronic integration of selected 1D resonance intensities. However, this analysis provided little or no evidence for its metabolism in vivo, observations consistent with those acquired in corresponding experiments performed involving an in vitro microsomal system. Contrastingly, the major valproate metabolite 1-O-valproyl-β-glucuronide was readily detectable and quantifiable in 14/47 of the urine samples investigated, despite some resonance overlap problems (identification of this agent was confirmed by experiments involving equilibration of these samples with β-glucuronidase, a process liberating free valproate). In order to facilitate and validate the detection of MGS in urine specimens, full assignments of the (1)H NMR spectra of MGS in both buffered aqueous (pH 7.10) and deuterated methanol solvent systems were also made. The pharmacological and bioanalytical significance of data acquired are discussed, with special reference to the advantages offered by high-resolution NMR analysis.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jpba.2015.08.011DOI Listing
January 2016

Ten-year outcome of enzyme replacement therapy with agalsidase beta in patients with Fabry disease.

J Med Genet 2015 May 20;52(5):353-8. Epub 2015 Mar 20.

Department of Human Genetics, Emory University School of Medicine, Atlanta, Georgia, USA.

Background: Fabry disease results from deficient α-galactosidase A activity and globotriaosylceramide accumulation causing renal insufficiency, strokes, hypertrophic cardiomyopathy and early demise. We assessed the 10-year outcome of recombinant α-galactosidase A therapy.

Methods: The outcomes (severe clinical events, renal function, cardiac structure) of 52/58 patients with classic Fabry disease from the phase 3 clinical trial and extension study, and the Fabry Registry were evaluated. Disease progression rates for patients with low renal involvement (LRI, n=32) or high renal involvement (HRI, n=20) at baseline were assessed.

Results: 81% of patients (42/52) did not experience any severe clinical event during the treatment interval and 94% (49/52) were alive at the end of the study period. Ten patients reported a total of 16 events. Patients classified as LRI started therapy 13 years younger than HRI (mean 25 years vs 38 years). Mean slopes for estimated glomerular filtration rate for LRI and HRI were -1.89 mL/min/1.73 m(2)/year and -6.82 mL/min/1.73 m(2)/year, respectively. Overall, the mean left ventricular posterior wall thickness and interventricular septum thickness remained unchanged and normal. Patients who initiated treatment at age ≥ 40 years exhibited significant increase in left ventricular posterior wall thickness and interventricular septum thickness. Mean plasma globotriaosylceramide normalised within 6 months.

Conclusions: This 10-year study documents the effectiveness of agalsidase beta (1 mg/kg/2 weeks) in patients with Fabry disease. Most patients remained alive and event-free. Patients who initiated treatment at a younger age and with less kidney involvement benefited the most from therapy. Patients who initiated treatment at older ages and/or had advanced renal disease experienced disease progression.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/jmedgenet-2014-102797DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4413801PMC
May 2015

Bladder and Bowel Dysfunction Is Common in Both Men and Women with Mutation of the ABCD1 Gene for X-Linked Adrenoleukodystrophy.

JIMD Rep 2015 13;22:77-83. Epub 2015 Mar 13.

Department of Neurosurgery, University Hospital Munich, Ludwig-Maximilians-University (LMU), Marchioninistraße 15, 81377, Munich, Germany,

Background: X-linked adrenoleukodystrophy (X-ALD) is a disorder caused by mutations in the ABCD1 gene. The commonest phenotype of X-ALD is adrenomyeloneuropathy (AMN), which is characterised by involvement of the spinal cord and peripheral nerves. The aim of this study was to evaluate bladder and bowel symptoms in men with AMN and female X-ALD carriers.

Methods: In this cross-sectional study, patients with confirmed mutation of the ABCD1 gene attending a tertiary care service were approached about bladder and bowel complaints and completed the Urinary Symptom Profile (USP), Qualiveen Short Form (SF-Qualiveen), International Prostate Symptom Score (IPSS) and Neurogenic Bowel Dysfunction (NBD) questionnaires. Neurological disability was assessed using the Expanded Disability Status Scale (EDSS).

Results: Forty-eight patients participated, 19 males (mean EDSS score (n = 16) 5.0 (95% CI ± 1.03)) and 29 females (mean EDSS score (n = 25) 3.2 (95% CI ± 0.98)). Overactive bladder (OAB) symptoms were reported in both males (100%, n = 19) and females (86.2%, n = 25). There was no significant gender difference in severity of OAB symptoms (P = 0.35) and impact on quality of life (P = 0.13). Furthermore, there was no significant difference in OAB severity when symptoms were compared between female carriers and a cohort of women (n = 17) with spinal cord damage due to multiple sclerosis (P = 0.27). Twenty-one percent (n = 4) of males and 10% (n = 3) of females had moderate to severe bowel dysfunction.

Conclusions: Bladder and bowel complaints are common in both men with AMN and female carriers. They have a significant impact on the quality of life yet are under-reported and under-treated. Though having an X-linked pattern of inheritance, female carriers may experience overactive bladder symptoms which are as severe as in male patients and are likely to be neurological in origin.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/8904_2015_414DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4486267PMC
July 2015

Reproducibility of native myocardial T1 mapping in the assessment of Fabry disease and its role in early detection of cardiac involvement by cardiovascular magnetic resonance.

J Cardiovasc Magn Reson 2014 Dec 5;16:99. Epub 2014 Dec 5.

The Heart Hospital, 16-18 Westmoreland Street, London W1G 8PH, UK.

Background: Cardiovascular magnetic resonance (CMR) derived native myocardial T1 is decreased in patients with Fabry disease even before left ventricular hypertrophy (LVH) occurs and may be the first non-invasive measure of myocyte sphingolipid storage. The relationship of native T1 lowering prior to hypertrophy and other candidate early phenotype markers are unknown. Furthermore, the reproducibility of T1 mapping has never been assessed in Fabry disease.

Methods: Sixty-three patients, 34 (54%) female, mean age 48±15 years with confirmed (genotyped) Fabry disease underwent CMR, ECG and echocardiographic assessment. LVH was absent in 25 (40%) patients. Native T1 mapping was performed with both Modified Look-Locker Inversion recovery (MOLLI) sequences and a shortened version (ShMOLLI) at 1.5 Tesla. Twenty-one patients underwent a second scan within 24 hours to assess inter-study reproducibility. Results were compared with 63 healthy age and gender-matched volunteers.

Results: Mean native T1 in Fabry disease (LVH positive), (LVH negative) and healthy volunteers was 853±50 ms, 904±46 ms and 968±32 ms (for all p<0.0001) by ShMOLLI sequences. Native T1 showed high inter-study, intra-observer and inter-observer agreement with intra-class correlation coefficients (ICC) of 0.99, 0.98, 0.97 (ShMOLLI) and 0.98, 0.98, 0.98 (MOLLI). In Fabry disease LVH negative individuals, low native T1 was associated with reduced echocardiographic-based global longitudinal speckle tracking strain (-18±2% vs -22±2%, p=0.001) and early diastolic function impairment (E/E'=7 [6-8] vs 5 [5-6], p=0.028).

Conclusion: Native T1 mapping in Fabry disease is a reproducible technique. T1 reduction prior to the onset of LVH is associated with early diastolic and systolic changes measured by echocardiography.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s12968-014-0099-4DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4256727PMC
December 2014

Uncertain diagnosis of fabry disease in patients with neuropathic pain, angiokeratoma or cornea verticillata: consensus on the approach to diagnosis and follow-up.

JIMD Rep 2014 16;17:83-90. Epub 2014 Sep 16.

Department of Internal Medicine, Division Endocrinology and Metabolism, Amsterdam lysosome centre 'Sphinx', Academic Medical Center, University of Amsterdam, Room F5-166, Meibergdreef 9, 1105 AZ, Amsterdam, The Netherlands.

Introduction: Individuals with neuropathic pain, angiokeratoma (AK) and/or cornea verticillata (CV) may be tested for Fabry disease (FD). Classical FD is characterised by a specific pattern of these features. When a patient presents with a non-specific pattern, the pathogenicity of a variant in the α-galactosidase A (GLA) gene may be unclear. This uncertainty often leads to considerable distress and inappropriate counselling and treatment. We developed a clinical approach for these individuals with an uncertain diagnosis of FD.

Materials And Methods: A document was presented to an FD expert panel with background information based on clinical experience and the literature, followed by an online survey and a written recommendation.

Results: The 13 experts agreed that the recommendation is intended for individuals with neuropathic pain, AK and/or CV only, i.e. without kidney, heart or brain disease, with an uncertain diagnosis of FD. Only in the presence of FD-specific neuropathic pain (small fibre neuropathy with FD-specific pattern), AK (FD-specific localisations) or CV (without CV inducing medication), FD is confirmed. When these features have a non-specific pattern, there is insufficient evidence for FD. If no alternative diagnosis is found, follow-up is recommended.

Conclusions: In individuals with an uncertain diagnosis of FD, the presence of an FD-specific pattern of CV, AK or neuropathic pain is sufficient to confirm the diagnosis of FD. When these features are non-specific, a definite diagnosis cannot (yet) be established and follow-up is indicated. ERT should be considered only in those patients with a confirmed diagnosis of FD.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/8904_2014_342DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4241201PMC
November 2014

Chronic kidney disease and an uncertain diagnosis of Fabry disease: approach to a correct diagnosis.

Mol Genet Metab 2015 Feb 20;114(2):242-7. Epub 2014 Aug 20.

Department of Endocrinology and Metabolism, Academic Medical Center, Amsterdam Lysosome Center 'Sphinx', Amsterdam, Netherlands. Electronic address:

Background And Objectives: Screening for Fabry disease (FD), an X-linked lysosomal storage disorder, reveals a significant number of individuals with a genetic variant of unknown significance without classical FD manifestations; these variants in the α-galactosidase A gene often result in a high residual leukocyte α-galactosidase A and it is unclear whether these individuals suffer from FD. Therefore, a structured diagnostic approach is warranted. We present a diagnostic algorithm on how to approach adults with chronic kidney disease and an uncertain diagnosis of FD nephropathy.

Design, Setting, Participants, And Measurements: A modified Delphi procedure was conducted to reach consensus among 11 FD experts. A systematic review was performed to identify possible criteria that could confirm or exclude FD nephropathy.

Results: The gold standard for FD nephropathy was defined as characteristic storage on electron microscopy (EM) in a kidney biopsy in the absence of medication that may induce similar storage. The suggested criteria to confirm FD nephropathy are as follows: 'renal cysts', 'Maltese cross sign', 'immunohistochemical staining of Gb3 in urine' and 'high urinary Gb3'; and to exclude FD nephropathy: 'absence of renal cysts', 'small kidneys' and 'high protein excretion' were rejected because of low or uncertain specificity. Urinary Gb3 may be increased in other kidney diseases and there was no agreement on this criterion, although a third of the panel indicated that it is sufficient to diagnose FD nephropathy. The 'Maltese cross sign' and 'high urinary Gb3' were selected as red flags to suggest the possibility of FD nephropathy, but are not sufficient for a definite diagnosis of FD nephropathy.

Conclusions: In adults with chronic kidney disease, an α-galactosidase A gene variant and an uncertain diagnosis of FD, a kidney biopsy with EM analysis should be performed to confirm or reject the diagnosis of FD nephropathy. Other criteria currently cannot substitute for a biopsy in these cases.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ymgme.2014.08.007DOI Listing
February 2015

Relative acidic compartment volume as a lysosomal storage disorder-associated biomarker.

J Clin Invest 2014 Mar;124(3):1320-8

Lysosomal storage disorders (LSDs) occur at a frequency of 1 in every 5,000 live births and are a common cause of pediatric neurodegenerative disease. The relatively small number of patients with LSDs and lack of validated biomarkers are substantial challenges for clinical trial design. Here, we evaluated the use of a commercially available fluorescent probe, Lysotracker, that can be used to measure the relative acidic compartment volume of circulating B cells as a potentially universal biomarker for LSDs. We validated this metric in a mouse model of the LSD Niemann-Pick type C1 disease (NPC1) and in a prospective 5-year international study of NPC patients. Pediatric NPC subjects had elevated acidic compartment volume that correlated with age-adjusted clinical severity and was reduced in response to therapy with miglustat, a European Medicines Agency–approved drug that has been shown to reduce NPC1-associated neuropathology. Measurement of relative acidic compartment volume was also useful for monitoring therapeutic responses of an NPC2 patient after bone marrow transplantation. Furthermore, this metric identified a potential adverse event in NPC1 patients receiving i.v. cyclodextrin therapy. Our data indicate that relative acidic compartment volume may be a useful biomarker to aid diagnosis, clinical monitoring, and evaluation of therapeutic responses in patients with lysosomal disorders.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1172/JCI72835DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3934186PMC
March 2014

Cognitive dysfunction and depression in Fabry disease: a systematic review.

J Inherit Metab Dis 2014 Mar 16;37(2):177-87. Epub 2013 Aug 16.

Charles Dent Metabolic Unit, National Hospital for Neurology and Neurosurgery, 8-11 Queen Square, Internal Mailbox 92, London, WC1N 3BG, UK.

Background: Fabry disease, an X-linked lysosomal storage disorder, leads to multi-organ dysfunction, including cerebrovascular disease and psychological disorders. However, the prevalence and pattern of associated cognitive dysfunction is not well understood.

Objectives: To investigate whether there is reliable evidence for neuropsychological impairment in patients with Fabry disease and which cognitive domains are affected. To estimate the prevalence of and factors associated with depression in patients with Fabry disease.

Method: Qualitative systematic review of the literature of studies conducting neuropsychological assessment or measuring the prevalence of depression in adults with Fabry disease using the preferred reporting items for systematic reviews and meta-analysis (PRISMA) guidelines where appropriate.

Results: There is some evidence for neuropsychological impairment in Fabry disease in executive functioning, information processing speed and attention, with preservation of: general intellectual functioning, memory, naming, perceptual functioning and global cognitive functioning. Prevalence rates of depression in Fabry disease ranged from 15% to 62%, with the largest study to date reporting a prevalence rate of 46%. The most common factor associated with depression was neuropathic pain, both directly and indirectly by affecting social and adaptive functioning.

Conclusion: Our review suggests that Fabry disease may be associated with a characteristic pattern of cognitive deficits and a high prevalence of psychological disorders such as depression but highlights the limited available data. Exploring the nature of cognitive impairment in Fabry disease using standardised neuropsychological assessment, brain imaging and measures of depression is an important task for future research.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s10545-013-9643-xDOI Listing
March 2014

Cross-sectional observational study of 208 patients with non-classical urea cycle disorders.

J Inherit Metab Dis 2014 Jan 19;37(1):21-30. Epub 2013 Jun 19.

Division of Metabolism, University Children's Hospital, Steinwiesstr. 75, 8032, Zurich, Switzerland.

Urea cycle disorders (UCDs) are inherited disorders of ammonia detoxification often regarded as mainly of relevance to pediatricians. Based on an increasing number of case studies it has become obvious that a significant number of UCD patients are affected by their disease in a non-classical way: presenting outside the newborn period, following a mild course, presenting with unusual clinical features, or asymptomatic patients with only biochemical signs of a UCD. These patients are surviving into adolescence and adulthood, rendering this group of diseases clinically relevant to adult physicians as well as pediatricians. In preparation for an international workshop we collected data on all patients with non-classical UCDs treated by the participants in 20 European metabolic centres. Information was collected on a cohort of 208 patients 50% of which were ≥ 16 years old. The largest subgroup (121 patients) had X-linked ornithine transcarbamylase deficiency (OTCD) of whom 83 were female and 29% of these were asymptomatic. In index patients, there was a mean delay from first symptoms to diagnosis of 1.6 years. Cognitive impairment was present in 36% of all patients including female OTCD patients (in 31%) and those 41 patients identified presymptomatically following positive newborn screening (in 12%). In conclusion, UCD patients with non-classical clinical presentations require the interest and care of adult physicians and have a high risk of neurological complications. To improve the outcome of UCDs, a greater awareness by health professionals of the importance of hyperammonemia and UCDs, and ultimately avoidance of the still long delay to correctly diagnose the patients, is crucial.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s10545-013-9624-0DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3889631PMC
January 2014

Identification and assessment of Anderson-Fabry disease by cardiovascular magnetic resonance noncontrast myocardial T1 mapping.

Circ Cardiovasc Imaging 2013 May 5;6(3):392-8. Epub 2013 Apr 5.

The Heart Hospital, London, UK.

Background: Anderson-Fabry disease (AFD) is a rare but underdiagnosed intracellular lipid disorder that can cause left ventricular hypertrophy (LVH). Lipid is known to shorten the magnetic resonance imaging parameter T1. We hypothesized that noncontrast T1 mapping by cardiovascular magnetic resonance would provide a novel and useful measure in this disease with potential to detect early cardiac involvement and distinguish AFD LVH from other causes.

Methods And Results: Two hundred twenty-seven subjects were studied: patients with AFD (n=44; 55% with LVH), healthy volunteers (n=67; 0% with LVH), patients with hypertension (n=41; 24% with LVH), patients with hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (n=34; 100% with LVH), those with severe aortic stenosis (n=21; 81% with LVH), and patients with definite amyloid light-chain (AL) cardiac amyloidosis (n=20; 100% with LVH). T1 mapping was performed using the shortened modified Look-Locker inversion sequence on a 1.5-T magnet before gadolinium administration with primary results derived from the basal and midseptum. Compared with health volunteers, septal T1 was lower in AFD and higher in other diseases (AFD versus healthy volunteers versus other patients, 882±47, 968±32, 1018±74 milliseconds; P<0.0001). In patients with LVH (n=105), T1 discriminated completely between AFD and other diseases with no overlap. In AFD, T1 correlated inversely with wall thickness (r=-0.51; P=0.0004) and was abnormal in 40% of subjects who did not have LVH. Segmentally, AFD showed pseudonormalization or elevation of T1 in the left ventricular inferolateral wall, correlating with the presence or absence of late gadolinium enhancement (1001±82 versus 891±38 milliseconds; P<0.0001).

Conclusions: Noncontrast T1 mapping shows potential as a unique and powerful measurement in the imaging assessment of LVH and AFD.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1161/CIRCIMAGING.112.000070DOI Listing
May 2013

The identification of new biomarkers for identifying and monitoring kidney disease and their translation into a rapid mass spectrometry-based test: evidence of presymptomatic kidney disease in pediatric Fabry and type-I diabetic patients.

J Proteome Res 2013 May 2;12(5):2013-21. Epub 2013 Apr 2.

Clinical and Molecular Genetics Unit, UCL Institute of Child Health, University College London, Guilford Street, London, WC1N 1EH, UK.

Using label-free quantative proteomics, we have identified 2 potential protein biomarkers that indicate presymptomatic kidney disease in the urine of pediatric patients with type-I diabetes and Fabry disease (n = 20). Prosaposin and GM2 activator protein (GM2AP) were observed to be elevated in the urine of these patient groups compared to age- and sex-matched controls. These findings were validated by development of a rapid MRM-based tandem mass spectrometry test. Prosaposin was observed to be both significantly elevated in the urine of patients with Fabry disease compared to controls (p = 0.02) and reduced after 12 months enzyme replacement therapy (ERT, p = 0.01). Similarly, GM2AP concentrations were observed to be significantly higher compared to controls in the diabetic group (p = 0.049) and the pretreatment Fabry group (p = 0.003). In addition, this observed to be reduced significantly in the Fabry group following 12 months of ERT (p = 0.01). The process of detection of the biomarkers, development into a test and implications for monitoring patients and treatment are discussed.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1021/pr301200eDOI Listing
May 2013

Movement disorders in adult patients with classical galactosemia.

Mov Disord 2013 Jun 11;28(6):804-10. Epub 2013 Feb 11.

Charles Dent Metabolic Unit, National Hospital for Neurology and Neurosurgery, London, United Kingdom.

Classical galactosemia is an autosomal recessive inborn error of metabolism leading to toxic accumulation of galactose and derived metabolites. It presents with acute systemic complications in the newborn. Galactose restriction resolves these symptoms, but long-term complications, such as premature ovarian failure and neurological problems including motor dysfunction, may occur despite adequate treatment. The objective of the current study was to determine the frequency and phenotype of motor problems in adult patients with classical galactosemia. In this cross-sectional study, adult patients with a biochemically confirmed diagnosis of galactosemia attending our clinic were assessed with an interview and neurological examination and their notes retrospectively reviewed. Patients were classified according to the presence/absence of motor dysfunction on examination. Patients with motor dysfunction were further categorized according to the presence/absence of reported motor symptoms. Forty-seven patients were included. Thirty-one patients showed evidence of motor dysfunction including: tremor (23 patients), dystonia (23 patients), cerebellar signs (6 patients), and pyramidal signs (4 patients). Tremor and dystonia were often combined (16 patients). Thirteen patients reported motor symptoms, with 8 describing progressive worsening. Symptomatic treatment was effective in 4 of 5 patients. Nonmotor neurological features (cognitive, psychiatric, and speech disorders) and premature ovarian failure were more frequent in patients with motor dysfunction. Motor dysfunction is a common complication of classical galactosemia, with tremor and dystonia the most frequent findings. Up to one third of patients report motor symptoms and may benefit from appropriate treatment. Progressive worsening is not uncommon and may suggest ongoing brain damage in a subset of patients.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/mds.25348DOI Listing
June 2013

Atypical parkinsonism and cerebrotendinous xanthomatosis: report of a family with corticobasal syndrome and a literature review.

Mov Disord 2012 Dec 2;27(14):1769-74. Epub 2012 Nov 2.

Sobell Department for Movement Disorders and Motor Neuroscience, UCL Institute of Neurology, London, United Kingdom.

Cerebrotendinous xanthomatosis is an autosomal recessive inborn error of cholesterol metabolism. It presents with systemic and neurological symptoms, rarely including parkinsonism. Presented here are a clinical description of a new family with cerebrotendinous xanthomatosis and parkinsonism and a review of 13 additional cases reported in the literature. The index case developed corticobasal syndrome, previously not reported in cerebrotendinous xanthomatosis. His brother had parkinsonism with cerebellar features and cognitive impairment. In a literature review, median age of onset of parkinsonism was found to be 40 years. Nearly all patients had other neurological symptoms: cognitive (93%), pyramidal (93%), or cerebellar (53%). All patients had walking difficulties, with falls in 27%. Systemic features were common: cataracts (93%) or tendon xanthomata (87%). Frequent MRI abnormalities included cerebellar atrophy (100%), cerebral atrophy (80%), and dentate nuclei signal changes (80%). Functional dopaminergic imaging often demonstrated presynaptic denervation. Improvement with levodopa was frequent (91%) but mild. Progressive neurological decline occurred in 92% of patients despite treatment with chenodeoxycholic acid. Cerebrotendinous xanthomatosis should be considered in the differential diagnosis of atypical parkinsonism, including corticobasal syndrome, particularly with early age of onset and in the context of a complex neurological phenotype. Tendon xanthomata, early-onset cataracts, and radiological findings of cerebellar atrophy with lesions of the dentate nuclei are useful clinical clues. Symptomatic treatment with levodopa may help, but progressive neurological decline is frequent despite treatment with chenodeoxycholic acid.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/mds.25229DOI Listing
December 2012

Role of serum N-terminal pro-brain natriuretic peptide measurement in diagnosis of cardiac involvement in patients with anderson-fabry disease.

Am J Cardiol 2013 Jan 4;111(1):111-7. Epub 2012 Oct 4.

Heart Hospital, University College London Hospitals, National Health Service Foundation Trust, London, United Kingdom.

Enzyme replacement therapy has the potential to delay or reverse adverse cardiac remodeling in Anderson-Fabry disease (AFD); however, the current indications for enzyme replacement therapy rely on detecting relatively advanced features of the disease. We aimed to determine the relation between the serum N-terminal pro-brain natriuretic peptide (NT-proBNP) concentration and cardiac abnormalities in patients with AFD. We hypothesized that it might help to detect early disease. NT-proBNP was measured under at rest conditions in 117 patients with AFD (age 48 ± 15 years, 46.2% men). All patients underwent clinical evaluation with electrocardiography and echocardiography. The median NT-proBNP concentration was 24 pmol/L (range <5 to 6,059). Of the 117 patients, 67 (57%) had elevated, age-corrected, NT-proBNP levels. In the 56 patients (48%) with normal echocardiographic findings, the NT-proBNP levels were greater than the age-predicted cutoffs in 10 of 25 patients with abnormal electrocardiographic findings and 3 of 31 patients with normal electrocardiographic findings (p <0.05). On multiple regression analysis, age, creatinine, left atrial volume index, E/Ea, and the presence of abnormal electrocardiographic findings were independently associated with log NT-proBNP (R(2) = 0.67, p <0.05). In conclusion, NT-proBNP concentrations were elevated in patients with AFD and early cardiac involvement, suggesting its measurement could assist in decisions regarding the timing of enzyme replacement therapy.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.amjcard.2012.08.055DOI Listing
January 2013

Cardiovascular magnetic resonance measurement of myocardial extracellular volume in health and disease.

Heart 2012 Oct 30;98(19):1436-41. Epub 2012 Aug 30.

The Heart Hospital, 16-18 Westmoreland St, London W1G 8PH, UK.

Objective: To measure and assess the significance of myocardial extracellular volume (ECV), determined non-invasively by equilibrium contrast cardiovascular magnetic resonance, as a clinical biomarker in health and a number of cardiac diseases of varying pathophysiology.

Design: Prospective study.

Setting: Tertiary referral cardiology centre in London, UK.

Patients: 192 patients were mainly recruited from specialist clinics. We studied patients with Anderson-Fabry disease (AFD, n=17), dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM, n=31), hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM, n=31), severe aortic stenosis (AS, n=66), cardiac AL amyloidosis (n=27) and myocardial infarction (MI, n=20). The results were compared with those for 81 normal subjects.

Results: In normal subjects, ECV (mean (95% CI), measured in the septum) was slightly higher in women than men (0.273 (0.264 to 0.282 vs 0.233 (0.225 to 0.244), p<0.001), with no change with age. In disease, the ECV of AFD was the same as in normal subjects but higher in all other diseases (p<0.001). Mean ECV was the same in DCM, HCM and AS (0.280, 0.291, 0.276 respectively), but higher in cardiac AL amyloidosis and higher again in MI (0.466 and 0.585 respectively, each p<0.001). Where ECV was elevated, correlations were found with indexed left ventricular mass, end systolic volume, ejection fraction and left atrial area in apparent disease-specific patterns.

Conclusions: Myocardial ECV, assessed non-invasively in the septum with equilibrium contrast cardiovascular magnetic resonance, shows gender differences in normal individuals and disease-specific variability. Therefore, ECV shows early potential to be a useful biomarker in health and disease.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/heartjnl-2012-302346DOI Listing
October 2012

Invariant natural killer T cells are not affected by lysosomal storage in patients with Niemann-Pick disease type C.

Eur J Immunol 2012 Jul 14;42(7):1886-92. Epub 2012 Jun 14.

Department of Pharmacology, University of Oxford, Oxford, UK.

Invariant natural killer T (iNKT) cells are a specialised subset of T cells that are restricted to the MHC class I like molecule, CD1d. The ligands for iNKT cells are lipids, with the canonical superagonist being α-galactosylceramide, a non-mammalian glycosphingolipid. Trafficking of CD1d through the lysosome is required for the development of murine iNKT cells. Niemann-Pick type C (NPC) disease is a lysosomal storage disorder caused by dysfunction in either of two lysosomal proteins, NPC1 or NPC2, resulting in the storage of multiple lipids, including glycosphingolipids. In the NPC1 mouse model, iNKT cells are virtually undetectable, which is likely due to the inability of CD1d to be loaded with the selecting ligand due to defective lysosomal function and/or CD1d trafficking. However, in this study we have found that in NPC1 patients iNKT cells are present at normal frequencies, with no phenotypic or functional differences. In addi-tion, antigen-presenting cells derived from NPC1 patients are functionally competent to present several different CD1d/iNKT-cell ligands. This further supports the hypothesis that there are different trafficking requirements for the development of murine and human iNKT cells, and a functional lysosomal/late-endosomal compartment is not required for human iNKT-cell development.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/eji.201141821DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3461304PMC
July 2012

Pregnancy and its management in women with GSD type III - a single centre experience.

J Inherit Metab Dis 2012 Mar 7;35(2):245-51. Epub 2011 Sep 7.

Charles Dent Metabolic Unit, National Hospital for Neurology and Neurosurgery, Internal Mailbox 92 Queen Square, London, WC1N 3BG, UK.

We present a review of our experience and pregnancy outcome in patients with GSD III managed by our centre. Between 1997 and 2010 there were 15 pregnancies in seven women with GSD III. Four women had GSD IIIb (nine pregnancies) and three GSD IIIa (six pregnancies). There was a successful outcome in all 15 pregnancies with delivery of 15 liveborn infants. Four infants were of low birthweight (<2nd centile) but all have developed normally apart from one with behavioural/psychiatric problems. Three women had pre-existing cardiomyopathy prior to pregnancy. One of these women had deterioration of her cardiomyopathy during pregnancy and again in the post-partum period. Women with GSD III do not seem to have any issues with fertility. Overall the outcome of pregnancy for both mother and child is good. Care needs to be taken to avoid maternal hypoglycemia which may be associated with intrauterine growth restriction and low birth weight. Cardiac function should be monitored carefully particularly in those with pre-existing cardiomyopathy.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s10545-011-9384-7DOI Listing
March 2012