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Clin Pharmacol Ther. 2004 May;75(5):476-83.

Simvastatin treatment for inflammatory attacks of the hyperimmunoglobulinemia D and periodic fever syndrome.

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  • 1Department of General Internal Medicine, University Medical Center St Radboud, Nijmegen, The Netherlands.


Hyperimmunoglobulinemia D (hyper-IgD) and periodic fever syndrome, a hereditary autoinflammatory syndrome, is characterized by lifelong recurrent episodes of fever and inflammation. No effective treatment is known. It is caused by a defect of mevalonate kinase, an enzyme that follows 3'-hydroxy-3'-methylglutaryl-coenzyme A (HMG-CoA) reductase in the isoprenoid pathway. We wanted to test the hypothesis that inhibition of HMG-CoA reductase would ameliorate the inflammatory attacks. Six patients with hyper-IgD syndrome and proven mevalonate kinase deficiency were followed up for 2 treatment periods with either simvastatin, 80 mg/d, or placebo for 24 weeks, separated by a 4-week washout period in a double-blind fashion. Simvastatin resulted in a drop in urinary mevalonic acid concentration in all patients and decreased the number of febrile days in 5 of 6 patients. No side effects were observed. These data offer preliminary evidence for the hypothesis that simvastatin may improve inflammatory attacks in the hyper-IgD syndrome. This highlights the anti-inflammatory properties of HMG-CoA reductase inhibition.

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