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Metabolism. 1997 Aug;46(8):851-6.

Response to nutritional and growth hormone treatment in progeria.

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Miami Children's Hospital, FL, USA.


Hutchinson-Gilford progeria syndrome (HGPS) is a rare condition with an unknown molecular defect. Patients with HGP progressively develop failure to thrive (FTT), alopecia, loss of subcutaneous fat, scleroderma, stiffening of various joints, and severe atherosclerosis. The median life span is 13 years, and the main cause of death is cardiovascular complications. There are few reports of endocrine and metabolic studies because of the rarity of this condition, and the response to long-term growth hormone (GH) treatment has not been described. We report the results of endocrine and metabolic studies performed to investigate the etiology of growth failure in five patients with HGP. Additionally, the response to nutritional therapy (NT) and GH treatment in three of these patients is presented. Our results suggest that elevated GH levels are characteristic of this disease and that an elevated basal metabolic rate (BMR) could be the cause of the FTT seen in HGP. Nonaggressive NT slightly improved weight gain and growth velocity (GV). Combined NT and GH treatment in three patients improved the GV, increased the levels of growth factors, and paradoxically resulted in decreased BMRs. However, the response to these therapies decreased over time and did not seem to prevent the progression of atherosclerotic disease.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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