2016 Volume 240 Issue 3 Pages 251-257
Alport syndrome is a progressive renal disease caused by mutations in COL4A3, COL4A4, and COL4A5 genes that encode collagen type IV alpha 3, alpha 4, and alpha 5 chains, respectively. Because of abnormal collagen chain, glomerular basement membrane becomes fragile and most of the patients progress to end-stage renal disease in early adulthood. COL4A5 mutation causes X-linked form of Alport syndrome, and two mutations in either COL4A3 or COL4A4 causes an autosomal recessive Alport syndrome. Recently, renin-angiotensin-aldosterone system (RAAS) blockade has been shown to attenuate effectively disease progression in Alport syndrome. Here we present three Japanese siblings and their father all diagnosed with autosomal recessive Alport syndrome and with different clinical courses, suggesting the importance of the early initiation of RAAS blockade. The father was diagnosed with Alport syndrome. His consanguineous parents and his wife were healthy. All three siblings showed hematuria since infancy. Genetic analysis revealed that they shared the same gene mutations in COL4A3 in a compound heterozygous state: c.2330G>A (p.Gly777Ala) from the mother and c.4354A>T (p.Ser1452Cys) from the father. Although RAAS blockade was initiated for the older sister and brother when their renal function was already impaired, it did not attenuate disease progression. In the youngest brother, RAAS blockade was initiated during normal renal function stage. After the initiation, his renal function has been normal with the very mild proteinuria to date at the age of 17 years. We propose that in Alport syndrome, RAAS blockade should be initiated earlier than renal function is impaired.