EUROPEAN JOURNAL OF MEDICAL GENETICS, vol.64, no.11, 2021 (SCI-Expanded)
Data from 38 children were retrospectively analyzed to determine the patient characteristics of Turkish children with Gaucher disease (GD) and evaluate the impact of enzyme replacement therapy (ERT) in a pediatric cohort consisting of two different sub-types of the disease, Gaucher disease type 1 (GD1) and type 3 (GD3). Both types were represented equally (GD1/GD3 = 20/18). L444P (35.5%) was the most common mutant allele while L444P/L444P (34.2%) was the most common genotype overall. Compound heterozygosity of N3705 and L444P homozygosity were the dominant genotypes in Turkish children with GD1 and GD3, respectively. None of the patients had moderate to severe thmmbocytopenia at last follow-up while the percent of patients with anemia decreased from 60% to 5.7% (p < 0.001). Significant improvements in mean liver (from 2.2 to 1.6 MN, p < 0.001) and spleen (from 15.5 to 7.6 MN, p < 0.001) volumes were observed in the first year of ERT. Linear growth was ameliorated as shown by the decrease in the percent of patients having short stature from 34.3% to 13.3% (p < 0.01) at year 5. Erlenmeyer flask deformity, osteopenia and scoliosis were common skeletal findings. Although none of the patients had lung disease at diagnosis, 20% developed radiological findings suggestive of pulmonary involvement. This single center experience is the first comprehensive study from Turkey not only reporting clinical and genetic characteristics of GD patients but also providing information on the outcomes of ERT in two different sub-types of GD. Genotypic background of Turkish children with GD is similar to western populations. Although visceral and hematological therapeutic goals are reached as early as one year of ERT in both sub-types, achieving normal growth takes several more years than suggested in significant number of children with GD.