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      Growth Hormone Therapy in Achondroplasia

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          Achondroplasia is one of the most common causes of severe rhizomelic dwarfism. We have previously reported the growth-promoting effect of growth hormone (GH) in this disorder. In this expanded clinical study, dose dependency and the long-term effect of GH were also investigated. Prepubertal children with achondroplasia (82 males and 63 females) were randomly divided into 2 groups. Patients were treated with 0.5 IU/kg per week or 1.0 IU/kg per week subcutaneous recombinant human GH. Of 75 patients, the mutational analysis of fibroblast growth factor receptor-3 revealed that G1138A was detected in 70 and G1138C was found in 2. GH increased growth rate and height z score in a dose-dependent manner. GH also increased serum insulin-like growth factor (IGF)-I, IGF-binding protein-3 and osteocalcin. No adverse effects were observed in either group. We conclude that GH therapy is a useful method for improvement of severe growth retardation of achondroplasia.

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          Most cited references 7

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          Fibroblast growth factor receptor 3 is a negative regulator of bone growth.

          Endochondral ossification is a major mode of bone that occurs as chondrocytes undergo proliferation, hypertrophy, cell death, and osteoblastic replacement. We have identified a role for fibroblast growth factor receptor 3 (FGFR-3) in this process by disrupting the murine Fgfr-3 gene to produce severe and progressive bone dysplasia with enhanced and prolonged endochondral bone growth. This growth is accompanied by expansion of proliferating and hypertrophic chondrocytes within the cartilaginous growth plate. Thus, FGFR-3 appears to regulate endochondral ossification by an essentially negative mechanism, limiting rather than promoting osteogenesis. In light of these mouse results, certain human disorders, such as achondroplasia, can be interpreted as gain-of-function mutations that activate the fundamentally negative growth control exerted by the FGFR-3 kinase.
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            Skeletal overgrowth and deafness in mice lacking fibroblast growth factor receptor 3.

            Fibroblast growth factor receptor 3 (Fgfr3) is a tyrosine kinase receptor expressed in developing bone, cochlea, brain and spinal cord. Achondroplasia, the most common genetic form of dwarfism, is caused by mutations in FGFR3. Here we show that mice homozygous for a targeted disruption of Fgfr3 exhibit skeletal and inner ear defects. Skeletal defects include kyphosis, scoliosis, crooked tails and curvature and overgrowth of long bones and vertebrae. Contrasts between the skeletal phenotype and achondroplasia suggest that activation of FGFR3 causes achondroplasia. Inner ear defects include failure of pillar cell differentiation and tunnel of Corti formation and result in profound deafness. Our results demonstrate that Fgfr3 is essential for normal endochondral ossification and inner ear development.
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              Thanatophoric dysplasia (types I and II) caused by distinct mutations in fibroblast growth factor receptor 3.

              Thanatophoric dysplasia (TD), the most common neonatal lethal skeletal dysplasia, affects one out of 20,000 live births. Affected individuals display features similar to those seen in homozygous achondroplasia. Mutations causing achondroplasia are in FGFR3, suggesting that mutations in this gene may cause TD. A sporadic mutation causing a Lys650Glu change in the tyrosine kinase domain of FGFR3 was found in 16 of 16 individuals with one type of TD. Of 39 individuals with a second type of TD, 22 had a mutation causing an Arg248Cys change and one had a Ser371Cys substitution, both in the extracellular region of the protein. None of these mutations were found in 50 controls showing that mutations affecting different functional domains of FGFR3 cause different forms of this lethal disorder.

                Author and article information

                Horm Res Paediatr
                Hormone Research in Paediatrics
                S. Karger AG
                August 2000
                17 November 2004
                : 53
                : Suppl 3
                : 53-56
                Department of Pediatrics, Okayama University Medical School, Okayama, Japan
                23534 Horm Res 2000;53(suppl 3):53–56
                © 2000 S. Karger AG, Basel

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                Page count
                Figures: 4, Tables: 2, References: 21, Pages: 4


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