Mucopolysaccharidosis type VII: A powerful experimental system and therapeutic challenge

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Abstract

Mucopolysaccharidosis type VII (MPSVII) is an inborn error of metabolism caused by a deficiency in the lysosomal enzyme B-glucuronidase (GUSB). As such, MPSVII is one of a larger class of inherited diseases referred to as lysosomal storage diseases (LSD). (1) The absence of GUSB activity leads to the progressive accumulation of undegraded glycosaminoglycans (GAGs) in many tissues of the body. Mucopolysaccharidosis VII has a complex clinical phenotype, including skeletal dysplasia, hepatosplenomegally, sensory deficits, cognitive impairment, and premature death. Although the natural history of the human disease is not precisely defined, small and large animal models of MPSVII have played a major role in our understanding of the disease process and towards effective treatments. The mouse model of MPSVII is a particularly powerful system due to its similarity to the human disease and the ability to generate large numbers of genetically defined animals. It has been shown in the murine model of MPSVII that recombinant enzyme replacement therapy (ERT) can ameliorate most of the clinical signs of disease if initiated during the neonatal period. Progenitor cell transplantation (hematopoietic, neuronal, mesenchymal) can correct many of the pathological signs of disease in MPSVII mice. Viral-mediated gene therapy has also been shown to decrease the severity of the disease in both the murine and canine models of MPSVII. Although pre-clinical experiments have shown that a number of approaches can effectively treat MPSVII, translation of those therapies into the clinic has lagged behind other LSDs. This is due in large part to the ultra-rare nature of MPSVII. Encouragingly, a clinical trial of ERT for MPSVII has recently been initiated. It will be interesting to determine if the positive pre-clinical data gathered in animal models of MPSVII translate to affected children. This clinical trial may also establish a paradigm for the i treatment of other ultra-rare disorders.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)159-165
Number of pages7
JournalPediatric Endocrinology Reviews
Volume12
StatePublished - Sep 1 2014

Keywords

  • Animal models
  • Enzyme replacement therapy
  • Gene therapy
  • Inherited metabolic disease
  • Lysosomal storage disease
  • Mucopolysaccharidosis VII
  • Stem cell therapy

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