|Classification and external resources|
Alpha galactosidase - the protein that is deficient in Fabry disease.
|ICD-10||E75.2 (ILDS E75.25)|
|eMedicine||neuro/579 derm/707 ped/2888|
Fabry disease (also known as Fabry's disease, Anderson-Fabry disease, angiokeratoma corporis diffusum and alpha-galactosidase A deficiency) is a rare X-linked (inherited) lysosomal storage disease, which can cause a wide range of systemic symptoms. It is a form of sphingolipidosis, as it involves dysfunctional metabolism of sphingolipids. The disease is named after one of its discoverers, Johannes Fabry (June 1, 1860–June 29, 1930).
A deficiency of the enzyme alpha galactosidase A (a-GAL A, encoded by GLA) due to mutation causes a glycolipid known as globotriaosylceramide (abbreviated as Gb3, GL-3, or ceramide trihexoside) to accumulate within the blood vessels, other tissues, and organs. This accumulation leads to an impairment of their proper function.
The DNA mutations which cause the disease are X-linked recessive. The condition affects hemizygous males (i.e. all males), as well as homozygous, and in many cases heterozygous females. While males typically experience severe symptoms, women can range from being asymptomatic to having severe symptoms. New research suggests that many women suffer with severe symptoms ranging from early cataracts, strokes, to hypertropic left ventricular heart problems and renal failure. This variability is thought to be due to X-inactivation patterns during embryonic development of the female.
Symptoms are typically first experienced in early childhood and can be very difficult to understand; the rarity of Fabry disease to many clinicians sometimes leads to misdiagnoses. Manifestations of the disease usually increase in number and severity as an individual ages.
Full body or localized pain to the extremities (known as acroparesthesia) or GI tract is common in patients with Fabry disease. Acroparesthesia in Fabry disease is believed to be related to the damage of peripheral nerve fibers that transmit pain. GI tract pain is likely caused by accumulation of lipids in the small vasculature of the GI tract which obstructs blood flow and causes pain.
- Renal involvement
Kidney complications are a common and serious effect of the disease; renal insufficiency and renal failure may worsen throughout life. Proteinuria (which causes foamy urine) is often the first sign of kidney involvement. End stage renal failure in fabry patients can typically occur in the third decade of life, and is a common cause of death due to the disease.
- Cardiac manifestations
Cardiac complications occur when glycolipids build up in different heart cells; heart related effects worsen with age and may lead to increased risk of heart disease. Hypertension (high blood pressure) and cardiomyopathy are commonly observed.
- Dermatological manifestations
- Ocular manifestations
Cosmetic ocular involvement may be present showing cornea verticillata (also known as vortex keratopathy), i.e. clouding of the corneas. Keratopathy may be the presenting feature in asymptomatic fabry patients, and must be differentiated from other causes of vortex keratopathy (e.g. drug deposition in the cornea). This clouding does not affect vision.
- Other manifestations
Fatigue, neuropathy (in particular, burning extremity pain), cerebrovascular effects leading to an increased risk of stroke, tinnitus (ringing in the ears), vertigo, nausea, inability to gain weight, chemical imbalances, and diarrhea are other common symptoms.
Fabry disease is indicated when associated symptoms are present, and can be diagnosed by a blood test to measure the level of alpha-galactosidase activity, however this may be misleading in female patients due to the random nature of X-inactivation. Chromosomal analysis of the GLA gene is the most accurate method of diagnosis, and many mutations which cause the disease have been noted. Kidney biopsy may also be suggestive of Fabry Disease if excessive lipid buildup is noted. Pediatricians as well as internists commonly misdiagnose Fabry disease.
The first treatment for Fabry's disease was approved by FDA on April 24, 2003. Fabrazyme™ (agalsidase beta) was licensed to the Genzyme Corporation. It is an Enzyme Replacement Therapies (ERTs) designed to provide the enzyme that the patient is missing as a result of a genetic malfunction. The drug is expensive — in 2012, Fabrazyme's annual cost was approximately US$200,000 per patient, which is unaffordable to many patients around the world without enough insurance. Enzyme replacement therapy is not a cure, but can allow improved metabolism and partially prevent disease progression, as well as potentially reversing some symptoms.
The pharmaceutical company Shire manufactures agalsidase alpha under the brand name Replagal as a treatment for Fabry's disease, and was granted marketing approval in the EU in 2001. FDA approval was applied for the United States. However, Shire withdrew their application for approval in the United States in 2012 citing that the agency will require additional clinical trials before approval.
Pop Cultural references 
- House (Epic Fail, season 6 episode 3) centers on a patient with Fabry Disease.
- Scrubs (My Catalyst, season 3 episode 12) features a Fabry Disease diagnosis.
- Crossing Jordan (There's No Place Like Home, season 2 episode 1) features a patient who died suffering Fabry disease.
See also 
- James, William D.; Berger, Timothy G.; et al. (2006). Andrews' Diseases of the Skin: clinical Dermatology. Saunders Elsevier. p. 538. ISBN 0-7216-2921-0.
- synd/1761 at Who Named It?
- Karen JK, Hale EK, Ma L (2005). "Angiokeratoma corporis diffusum (Fabry disease)". Dermatol. Online J. 11 (4): 8. PMID 16403380.
- James, William D.; Berger, Timothy G.; et al. (2006). Andrews' Diseases of the Skin: clinical Dermatology. Saunders Elsevier. pp. [page needed]. ISBN 0-7216-2921-0.
- Mehta, A.; Ricci, R.; Widmer, U.; Dehout, F.; Garcia De Lorenzo, A.; Kampmann, C.; Linhart, A.; Sunder-Plassmann, G. et al. (2004). "Fabry disease defined: Baseline clinical manifestations of 366 patients in the Fabry Outcome Survey". European Journal of Clinical Investigation 34 (3): 236–242. doi:10.1111/j.1365-2362.2004.01309.x. PMID 15025684.
- Hoffmann MD, Bjoern; Beck, Michael PhD; Sunder-Plassmann, Gere PhD; Borsini, Walter MD; Ricci, Roberta PhD; Mehta, Atul MD (July/August 2007). "Nature and Prevalence of Pain in Fabry Disease and Its Response to Enzyme Replacement Therapy—A Retrospective Analysis From the Fabry Outcome Survey.". The Clinical Journal of Pain 23 (6): 535–542. doi:10.1097/AJP.0b013e318074c986.
- Naturally, alpha-galactosidase A (a-GAL A) is likely to be present only at very low levels in the blood, particularly in males. In females, owing to X-inactivation patterns, levels are commonly normal even if the patient is symptomatic. The Sifap (stroke in young Fabry patients) project will investigate the relation between stroke and Fabry's disease. Marchesoni CL, Roa N, Pardal AM, Neumann P, Caceres G, Martinez P, Kisinovsky I, Bianchi S, Tarabuso AL, Reisin RC. (2010). "Misdiagnosis in Fabry disease". J Pediatr. 156 (5): 828–831. doi:10.1016/j.jpeds.2010.02.012. PMID 20385321.
- Keating GM (October 2012). "Agalsidase alfa: a review of its use in the management of Fabry disease". BioDrugs 26 (5): 335–54. doi:10.2165/11209690-000000000-00000. PMID 22946754.
- "Shire Submits Biologics License Application (BLA) for REPLAGAL with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA)". FierceBiotech.
- "With A Life-Saving Medicine In Short Supply, Patients Want Patent Broken". 2010-08-04. Archived from the original on 14 September 2010. Retrieved 2010-09-02.
- Grogan K (2012-03-15). "Shire withdraws Replagal in USA as FDA wants more trials". PharmaTimes.
- Waldek, S.; Patel, M. R.; Banikazemi, M.; Lemay, R.; Lee, P. (2009). "Life expectancy and cause of death in males and females with Fabry disease: Findings from the Fabry Registry". Genetics in Medicine 11 (11): 790–796. doi:10.1097/GIM.0b013e3181bb05bb. PMID 19745746.
- GeneReview entry on Fabry disease by NIH
- Fabry Disease Information Page at NINDS
- Fabry disease at NLM Genetics Home Reference
- Fabry Registry
- Stroke in young Fabry patients
- Support groups
- Fabry International Network
- Focus on Fabry by Shire
- Fabry Community by Genzyme
- Fabry Support & Information Group (FSIG)
- Fabry support at MPS Society
- Canadian Fabry Association
- National Fabry Disease Foundation, USA
- Fabry Support Group Australia
- Fabry Support Group Poland by Pietka