Short stature caused by isolated SHOX gene haploinsufficiency: update on the diagnosis and treatment

Pediatr Endocrinol Rev. 2010 Dec;8(2):79-85.


Heterozygous SHOX defects are observed in about 50 to 90% of patients with Leri-Weill dyschondrosteosis (LWD), a common dominant inherited skeletal dysplasia; and in 2 to 15% of children with idiopathic short stature (ISS), indicating that SHOX defects are the most important monogenetic cause of short stature. In addition, children selected by disproportionate idiopathic short stature had a higher frequency of SHOX mutations (22%). A careful clinical evaluation of family members with short stature is recommended since it usually revealed LWD patients in families first classified as having ISS or familial short stature. SHOX-molecular analysis is indicated in families with LWD and ISS children with disproportionate short stature. Treatment with recombinant human growth hormone is considered an accepted approach to treat short stature associated with isolated SHOX defect. Here we review clinical, molecular and therapeutic aspects of SHOX haploinsufficiency.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Body Height / genetics*
  • Growth Disorders* / diagnosis
  • Growth Disorders* / genetics
  • Growth Disorders* / therapy
  • Haplotypes
  • Homeodomain Proteins / genetics*
  • Humans
  • Short Stature Homeobox Protein


  • Homeodomain Proteins
  • SHOX protein, human
  • Short Stature Homeobox Protein