Renal Amyloidosis Associated With 5 Novel Variants in the Fibrinogen A Alpha Chain Protein

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Abstract

Introduction Fibrinogen A alpha chain amyloidosis is an autosomal dominant disease associated with mutations in the fibrinogen A alpha chain (FGA) gene, and it is the most common cause of hereditary renal amyloidosis in the UK. Patients typically present with kidney impairment and progress to end-stage renal disease over a median time of 4.6 years. Methods Six patients presented with proteinuria, hypertension, and/or lower limb edema and underwent detailed clinical and laboratory investigations. Results A novel FGA gene mutation was identified in each case: 2 frameshift mutations F521Sfs*27 and G519Efs*30 and 4 single base substitutions G555F, E526K, E524K, R554H. In 5 subjects, extensive amyloid deposits were found solely within the glomeruli, which stained specifically with antibodies to fibrinogen A alpha chain, and in one of these cases, we found coexistent fibrinogen A alpha chain amyloidosis and anti-glomerular basement membrane antibody disease. One patient was diagnosed with light-chain amyloidosis after a bone marrow examination revealed a small clonal plasma cell population, and laser microdissection of the amyloid deposits followed by liquid chromatography and tandem mass spectrometry identified kappa light chain as the fibril protein. Discussion We report 6 novel mutations in the FGA gene: 5 were associated with renal fibrinogen A alpha chain amyloidosis and 1 was found to be incidental to light-chain amyloid deposits discovered in a patient with a plasma cell dyscrasia. Clinical awareness and suspicion of hereditary amyloidosis corroborated by genetic analysis and adequate typing using combined immunohistochemistry and laser microdissection and mass spectrometry is valuable to avoid misdiagnosis, especially when a family history of amyloidosis is absent.

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Rowczenio, D., Stensland, M., de Souza, G. A., Strøm, E. H., Gilbertson, J. A., Taylor, G., … Wien, T. N. (2017). Renal Amyloidosis Associated With 5 Novel Variants in the Fibrinogen A Alpha Chain Protein. Kidney International Reports, 2(3), 461–469. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ekir.2016.11.005

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