Enzyme replacement and enhancement therapies for lysosomal diseases

J Inherit Metab Dis. 2004;27(3):385-410. doi: 10.1023/B:BOLI.0000031101.12838.c6.


Although first suggested by de Duve in 1964, enzyme replacement therapy (ERT) for lysosomal storage diseases did not become a reality until the early 1990s when its safety and effectiveness were demonstrated in type 1 Gaucher disease. Today, ERT is a reality for Gaucher disease, Fabry disease and mucopolysaccharidosis type I (MPS I), and clinical trials with recombinant human enzymes are ongoing in Pompe disease, MPS II and MPS VI, and are about to begin in Neimann-Pick B disease. In addition to ERT, enzyme enhancement therapy (EET) offers a novel therapeutic strategy to increase the residual function of mutant proteins. EET employs small molecules as 'pharmacological chaperones' to rescue misfolded and/or unstable mutant enzymes or proteins that have residual function. EET also offers the possibility of treating neurodegenerative lysosomal disorders since these small therapeutic molecules may cross the blood-brain barrier. The current status of ERT and the prospects for EET for lysosomal storage diseases are reviewed.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Enzyme Therapy*
  • Humans
  • Lysosomal Storage Diseases / drug therapy*
  • Recombinant Proteins / therapeutic use*


  • Recombinant Proteins