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Clinical and molecular characteristics of homozygous familial hypercholesterolemia patients: Insights from SAFEHEART registry


Clinical and molecular characteristics of homozygous familial hypercholesterolemia patients: Insights from SAFEHEART registry



Journal of Clinical Lipidology 10(4): 953-961



ISSN/ISBN: 1933-2874

PMID: 27578128

DOI: 10.1016/j.jacl.2016.04.006

Homozygous familial hypercholesterolemia (HoFH) is a rare genetic disorder associated with very high levels of cholesterol, accelerated atherosclerosis and very premature death, often secondary to occlusion of the coronary ostia by supravalvular atheroma in untreated individuals. To describe molecular and clinical characteristics of HoFH enrolled at SAFEHEART registry and to evaluate the role of the type of mutation in clinical expression. SAFEHEART is a registry of molecularly defined familial hypercholesterolemia patients. A standardized phone call is made every year for the follow-up. Patients with confirmed HoFH were selected. Molecular and clinical characteristics were analyzed. Thirty-four HoFH patients (27 true HoFH, 4 compound heterozygous familial hypercholesterolemia, and 3 autosomal recessive hypercholesterolemia) have been enrolled in the period 2004-2015. Twenty different mutations in LDLR gene have been detected. Sixteen patients carry defective mutations (DMs), and 15 carry null mutations (NMs). Only patients with NMs met low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL-C) criteria for clinical diagnosis. Patients with NMs had higher untreated LDL-C levels (P < .0001), more aortic valve stenosis (P < .05), and lower age at first cardiovascular event (P < .05) compared to patients with DMs. In the follow-up, 1 liver transplant patient died and 3 cases underwent revascularization procedures. Eight cases started LDL apheresis and 1 case had a liver transplant. HoFH phenotypic expression is highly variable. These patients have high atherosclerotic coronary artery disease risk including aortic valve stenosis and do not achieve the LDL-C treatment goals with standard therapy.

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Accession: 057419430

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