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Transplantation. 2001 Apr 15;71(7):986-92.

Clinical and biochemical outcome of hepatorenal transplantation for hereditary systemic amyloidosis associated with apolipoprotein AI Gly26Arg.

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Centre for Amyloidosis and Acute Phase Proteins, Department of Medicine, Royal Free and University College Medical School, London.



Treatment of systemic amyloidosis comprises measures to support failing organ function coupled with attempts to reduce the supply of the respective amyloid fibril precursor protein. Orthotopic hepatic transplantation is effective in familial amyloid polyneuropathy associated with variant transthyretin, because this protein is produced almost exclusively in the liver. Hepatic transplantation has not been performed in hereditary apolipoprotein AI (apoAI) amyloidosis, and the liver's contribution to plasma apoAI levels has not been determined in vivo.


A 57-year-old Irish man with hereditary systemic amyloidosis associated with apoAI Gly26Arg, which had led to end-stage renal failure and progressive liver dysfunction, underwent hepatorenal transplantation. His outcome was followed clinically and his amyloid deposits were monitored with serum amyloid P component scintigraphy. The proportion of variant apoAI in the plasma was estimated by quantitative isoelectric focusing before and after liver transplantation.


Plasma levels of variant apoAI decreased by 50% after liver transplantation, and the patient was asymptomatic 2 years after surgery. Subclinical amyloid deposits that were present in his spleen and heart preoperatively have regressed and stabilized respectively.


Orthotopic liver transplantation substantially reduces the supply of the amyloid fibril precursor protein in hereditary apoAI amyloidosis, and the excellent outcome in this patient probably reflects the balance between deposition and turnover of amyloid having been altered in favor of the latter. These findings support the use of liver transplantation in patients with hereditary apoAI amyloidosis who develop hepatic dysfunction.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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