INTRODUCTION: Kabuki syndrome (KS) is a genetic disorder with characteristic facial dysmorphisms, short stature, hypertension, and obesity later in life. The aim of this study was to evaluate catch-up growth and cardiovascular markers before and during growth hormone (rhGH) treatment in KS children.
METHODS: This prospective study included 18 children whose KS was genetically established. Each KS subject received rhGH for a period of 2 years. Several measurements were performed before and during treatment: anthropometry, glucose metabolism, lipid profile, markers for endothelial function, and low-grade inflammation.
RESULTS: This study found an increase in delta height standard deviation score (SDS) for the whole group of 1.1 SDS after 2 years of rhGH treatment. Baseline metabolic profiles showed no cardiometabolic abnormalities in these children. Although 4 out of 18 children were obese, there were no signs of the metabolic syndrome. During rhGH treatment, serum low-density lipoprotein cholesterol concentrations decreased significantly (2.16-1.91 mmol/L, p = 0.04). Apolipoprotein B100 concentrations also showed a reduction after 24 months of treatment, but the other lipid and (apo)lipoprotein parameters did not change. While other endothelial function markers were stable, only vascular cell-adhesion molecule-1 concentrations increased (1,084-1,161 pg/mL, p < 0.01) during rhGH therapy. Furthermore, BMI and waist circumference improved during treatment. There were no signs of hypertension.
CONCLUSIONS: At baseline and during rhGH therapy, there were no signs of the metabolic syndrome. This is the first study demonstrating that rhGH treatment in KS children is a safe and effective therapy and that it positively influences linear height without exerting adverse effects on a wide array of cardiovascular risk markers.