The role of the iminosugar N-butyldeoxynojirimycin (miglustat) in the management of type I (non-neuronopathic) Gaucher disease: a position statement

J Inherit Metab Dis. 2003;26(6):513-26. doi: 10.1023/a:1025902113005.


N-Butyldeoxynojirimycin (NB-DNJ, miglustat 'Zavesca') is an orally active iminosugar which inhibits the biosynthesis of macromolecular substrates that accumulate pathologically in glycosphingolipidoses. Clinical trials of NB-DNJ in patients with Gaucher's disease demonstrate the therapeutic potential of such substrate inhibitors in the glycolipid storage disorders. However, macrophage-targetted enzyme replacement using intravenous mannose-terminated human glucocerebrosidase (imiglucerase, Cerezyme) is highly effective in ameliorating many of the manifestations of Gaucher's disease and is a treatment in widespread use. Given that imiglucerase and miglustat are now both licensed for the treatment of Gaucher's disease, there is a need to review their therapeutic status. Here the treatment of type 1 (non-neuronopathic) Gaucher disease is evaluated with particular reference to the emerging role of oral N-butyldeoxynojirimycin (miglustat) as a substrate-reducing agent. This position statement represents the consensus viewpoint of an independent international advisory council to the European Working Group on Gaucher Disease.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Clinical Trials as Topic
  • Enzyme Therapy
  • Gaucher Disease / diagnosis
  • Gaucher Disease / drug therapy*
  • Glucosylceramidase / therapeutic use*
  • Humans


  • Glucosylceramidase
  • imiglucerase