- Pharmacotherapies that specifically target ammonia for the prevention and treatment of hepatic encephalopathy in adults with cirrhosis. [Review]
- CDCochrane Database Syst Rev 2019 Jun 17; 6:CD012334
- CONCLUSIONS: There is insufficient evidence to determine the effects of these pharmacotherapies on the prevention and treatment of hepatic encephalopathy in adults with cirrhosis. They have the potential to reduce blood ammonia concentrations when compared to placebo, but their overall effects on clinical outcomes of interest and the potential harms associated with their use remain uncertain. Further evidence is needed to evaluate the potential beneficial and harmful effects of these pharmacotherapies in this clinical setting.
- Impact of Diagnosis and Therapy on Cognitive Function in Urea Cycle Disorders. [Journal Article]
- ANAnn Neurol 2019; 86(1):116-128
- CONCLUSIONS: Cognitive function is related to interventional and non-interventional variables. Early detection by newborn screening and early liver transplantation appear to offer greater cognitive protection, but none of the currently used nitrogen scavengers was superior with regard to long-term neurocognitive outcome. Further confirmation could determine these variables as important clinical indicators of neuroprotection for individuals with UCDs. ANN NEUROL 2019.
- Suggested guidelines for the diagnosis and management of urea cycle disorders: First revision. [Review]
- JIJ Inherit Metab Dis 2019 Apr 14
- In 2012, we published guidelines summarizing and evaluating late 2011 evidence for diagnosis and therapy of urea cycle disorders (UCDs). With 1:35 000 estimated incidence, UCDs cause hyperammonemia o…
In 2012, we published guidelines summarizing and evaluating late 2011 evidence for diagnosis and therapy of urea cycle disorders (UCDs). With 1:35 000 estimated incidence, UCDs cause hyperammonemia of neonatal (~50%) or late onset that can lead to intellectual disability or death, even while effective therapies do exist. In the 7 years that have elapsed since the first guideline was published, abundant novel information has accumulated, experience on newborn screening for some UCDs has widened, a novel hyperammonemia-causing genetic disorder has been reported, glycerol phenylbutyrate has been introduced as a treatment, and novel promising therapeutic avenues (including gene therapy) have been opened. Several factors including the impact of the first edition of these guidelines (frequently read and quoted) may have increased awareness among health professionals and patient families. However, under-recognition and delayed diagnosis of UCDs still appear widespread. It was therefore necessary to revise the original guidelines to ensure an up-to-date frame of reference for professionals and patients as well as for awareness campaigns. This was accomplished by keeping the original spirit of providing a trans-European consensus based on robust evidence (scored with GRADE methodology), involving professionals on UCDs from nine countries in preparing this consensus. We believe this revised guideline, which has been reviewed by several societies that are involved in the management of UCDs, will have a positive impact on the outcomes of patients by establishing common standards, and spreading and harmonizing good practices. It may also promote the identification of knowledge voids to be filled by future research.
- Pharmacokinetics of glycerol phenylbutyrate in pediatric patients 2 months to 2 years of age with urea cycle disorders. [Journal Article]
- MGMol Genet Metab 2018; 125(3):251-257
- CONCLUSIONS: These observations demonstrate that UCD patients aged 2 months to <2 years have sufficient lipase activity to adequately convert the pre-prodrug GPB to PBA. PBA is then converted to its active moiety (PAA) providing successful nitrogen scavenging even in very young children.
- Glycerol Phenylbutyrate (Ravicti) [BOOK]
- BOOKCanadian Agency for Drugs and Technologies in Health: Ottawa (ON)
- Urea cycle disorders (UCDs) result from genetic mutations that cause defects in any of the five enzymes of the urea cycle in the liver: carbamoyl phosphate synthetase 1 (CPS1), ornithine transcarbamy…
Urea cycle disorders (UCDs) result from genetic mutations that cause defects in any of the five enzymes of the urea cycle in the liver: carbamoyl phosphate synthetase 1 (CPS1), ornithine transcarbamylase (OTC), argininosuccinate synthetase (ASS), argininosuccinate lyase, and arginase; in the co-factor producer N-acetyl glutamate synthetase; or in the ornithine transporter and citrin. The estimated incidence of UCDs ranges from one in 22,179 births to one in 53,717 births. The most recent estimate of incidence of UCDs for the US is around one in 35,000 births. It is estimated that approximately 11 new cases of UCDs will be diagnosed each year in Canada. The incidence of OTC deficiency (one in 56,500 live births) is higher than other UCDs. Deficiencies in the urea cycle may result in excessive ammonia levels due to impaired metabolism, which can be life-threatening and result in permanent neurological damage if left untreated. Treatment should be initiated as soon as a diagnosis of a UCD is suspected and should proceed simultaneously with the diagnostic evaluation. The goals of long-term management of UCDs are to achieve normal development, to prevent hyperammonemia, and to maintain a good quality of life (QoL). These are achieved through a low-protein diet (and sometimes essential amino acids and other essential nutrients supplementation), pharmacotherapies to increase waste nitrogen excretion, and liver transplantation in selected patients. Sodium phenylbutyrate (NaPBA) is the mainstay of pharmacological therapy in chronic management of UCDs; however, its use is associated with decreased appetite, taste disturbances, body odour and menstrual dysfunction/amenorrhea. More recently, glycerol phenylbutyrate (GPB, brand name Ravicti) was approved as a nitrogen-scavenging therapy. This is a triglyceride containing three molecules of phenylbutyric acid. Its major metabolite, phenylacetic acid, conjugates with glutamine through acetylation in the liver and kidneys to form phenylacetylglutamine, which is excreted by the kidneys. GPB is administered orally with a recommended total dose ranging from 4.5 mL/m2 per day to 11.2 mL/m2 per day (5.0 g/m2 per day to 12.4 g/m2 per day). For patients who have been previously treated with NaPBA, the total daily dose of GPB can be calculated based on the total daily dose of NaPBA. The objective of this systematic review is to examine the beneficial and harmful effects of GPB as a nitrogen-binding agent adjunctive to dietary protein restriction and dietary supplements for chronic management of adult and pediatric (at least two years of age) patients with UCDs.
- Treating hepatic encephalopathy in cirrhotic patients admitted to ICU with sodium phenylbutyrate: a preliminary study. [Journal Article]
- FCFundam Clin Pharmacol 2018; 32(2):209-215
- Hepatic encephalopathy (HE) influences short-term and long-term prognoses. Recently, glycerol phenylbutyrate (PB), that lowers ammonia by providing an alternate pathway to urea for waste nitrogen exc…
Hepatic encephalopathy (HE) influences short-term and long-term prognoses. Recently, glycerol phenylbutyrate (PB), that lowers ammonia by providing an alternate pathway to urea for waste nitrogen excretion, has shown that it was effective in preventing the occurrence of HE in RCT. The aim was to assess the benefits of sodium PB in cirrhotic patients admitted to ICU for overt HE, in terms of ammonia levels decrease, neurological improvement, and survival. Cirrhotic patients who presented with overt HE, ammonia levels >100 μmol/L, and did not display any contra-indication were included. Sodium PB was administered at 200 mg/kg/day. Control group included historical controls treated by standard therapy, matched for age, sex, MELD score, and severity of HE. Eighteen patients were included and treated with sodium PB (age: 59 [45-68], male gender: 15 [83%], Child-Pugh B: 8 [44%], Child-Pugh C: 10 [56%], and MELD score: 16 [13-23]). Ammonia levels significantly decreased in the PB as compared to the control group from inclusion to 12 h and from inclusion to 48 h (P = 0.0201 and P = 0.0230, respectively). The proportion of patients displaying neurological improvement was only higher in the PB-treated group as compared to controls at ICU discharge (15 [83%] vs. 9 [50%], P = 0.0339). ICU discharge survival was significantly higher in patients treated with PB (17 [94%] vs. 9 [50%], P = 0.0017). In cirrhotic patients with overt HE, sodium PB could be effective in reducing ammonia levels and might be effective in improving neurological status and ICU discharge survival. More extensive data, especially a RCT, are mandatory.
- Safety and efficacy of glycerol phenylbutyrate for management of urea cycle disorders in patients aged 2months to 2years. [Multicenter Study]
- MGMol Genet Metab 2017; 122(3):46-53
- CONCLUSIONS: GPB was safe and effective in UCD patients aged 2months to 2years. GPB use was associated with good short- and long-term control of ammonia and glutamine levels, and the annualized frequency of hyperammonemic crises was lower during the study than before the study. There was no evidence for any previously unknown toxicity of GPB.
- Quantitation of phenylbutyrate metabolites by UPLC-MS/MS demonstrates inverse correlation of phenylacetate:phenylacetylglutamine ratio with plasma glutamine levels. [Journal Article]
- MGMol Genet Metab 2017; 122(3):39-45
- Urea cycle disorders (UCDs) are genetic conditions characterized by nitrogen accumulation in the form of ammonia and caused by defects in the enzymes required to convert ammonia to urea for excretion…
Urea cycle disorders (UCDs) are genetic conditions characterized by nitrogen accumulation in the form of ammonia and caused by defects in the enzymes required to convert ammonia to urea for excretion. UCDs include a spectrum of enzyme deficiencies, namely n-acetylglutamate synthase deficiency (NAGS), carbamoyl phosphate synthetase I deficiency (CPS1), ornithine transcarbamylase deficiency (OTC), argininosuccinate lyase deficiency (ASL), citrullinemia type I (ASS1), and argininemia (ARG). Currently, sodium phenylbutyrate and glycerol phenylbutyrate are primary medications used to treat patients with UCDs, and long-term monitoring of these compounds is critical for preventing drug toxic levels. Therefore, a fast and simple ultra-performance liquid chromatography (UPLC-MS/MS) method was developed and validated for quantification of phenylbutyrate (PB), phenylacetate (PA), and phenylacetylglutamine (PAG) in plasma and urine. The separation of all three analytes was achieved in 2min, and the limits of detection were <0.04μg/ml. Intra-precision and inter-precision were <8.5% and 4% at two quality control concentrations, respectively. Average recoveries for all compounds ranged from 100% to 106%. With the developed assay, a strong correlation between PA and the PA/PAG ratio and an inverse correlation between PA/PAG ratio and plasma glutamine were observed in 35 patients with confirmed UCDs. Moreover, all individuals with a ratio ≥0.6 had plasma glutamine levels<1000μmol/l. Our data suggest that a PA/PAG ratio in the range of 0.6-1.5 will result in a plasma glutamine level<1000μmol/l without reaching toxic levels of PA.
- GeneReviews®: Citrullinemia Type I [BOOK]
- BOOKUniversity of Washington, Seattle: Seattle (WA)
- Citrullinemia type I (CTLN1) presents as a clinical spectrum that includes an acute neonatal form (the "classic" form), a milder late-onset form (the "non-classic" form), a form without symptoms or h…
Citrullinemia type I (CTLN1) presents as a clinical spectrum that includes an acute neonatal form (the "classic" form), a milder late-onset form (the "non-classic" form), a form without symptoms or hyperammonemia, and a form in which women have onset of severe symptoms during pregnancy or post partum. Distinction between the clinical forms is based on clinical findings and is not clear-cut. Infants with the acute neonatal form appear normal at birth. Shortly thereafter, they develop hyperammonemia and become progressively lethargic, feed poorly, often vomit, and may develop signs of increased intracranial pressure (ICP). Without prompt intervention, hyperammonemia and the accumulation of other toxic metabolites (e.g., glutamine) result in increased ICP, increased neuromuscular tone, spasticity, ankle clonus, seizures, loss of consciousness, and death. Children with the severe form who are treated promptly may survive for an indeterminate period of time, but usually with significant neurologic deficits. The late-onset form may be milder than that seen in the acute neonatal form, for unknown reasons. The episodes of hyperammonemia are similar to those seen in the acute neonatal form, but the initial neurologic findings may be more subtle because of the older age of the affected individuals.
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- Protein and calorie intakes in adult and pediatric subjects with urea cycle disorders participating in clinical trials of glycerol phenylbutyrate. [Journal Article]
- MGMol Genet Metab Rep 2016; 6:34-40
- CONCLUSIONS: Pediatric patients treated with phenylbutyrate derivatives exhibited normal height and weight. Protein and calorie intakes in adult and pediatric UCD subjects differed from UCD dietary guidelines, suggesting that these guidelines may need to be reconsidered.