Asfotase alfa therapy for children with hypophosphatasia

JCI Insight. 2016 Jun 16;1(9):e85971. doi: 10.1172/jci.insight.85971.


Background. Hypophosphatasia (HPP) is caused by loss-of-function mutation(s) of the gene that encodes the tissue-nonspecific isoenzyme of alkaline phosphatase (TNSALP). Consequently, cell-surface deficiency of TNSALP phosphohydrolase activity leads to extracellular accumulation of inorganic pyrophosphate, a natural substrate of TNSALP and inhibitor of mineralization. Children with HPP can manifest rickets, skeletal pain, deformity, fracture, muscle weakness, and premature deciduous tooth loss. Asfotase alfa is a recombinant, bone-targeted, human TNSALP injected s.c. to treat HPP. In 2012, we detailed the 1-year efficacy of asfotase alfa therapy for the life-threatening perinatal and infantile forms of HPP. Methods. Here, we evaluated the efficacy and safety of asfotase alfa treatment administered to children 6-12 years of age at baseline who were substantially impaired by HPP. Two radiographic scales quantitated HPP skeletal disease, including comparisons to serial radiographs from similarly affected historical control patients. Results. Twelve children receiving treatment were studied for 5 years. The 6-month primary endpoint was met, showing significant radiographic improvement. Additional significant improvements included patient growth, strength, motor function, agility, and quality of life, which for most patients meant achieving normal values for age- and sex-matched peers that were sustained at 5 years of treatment. For most, pain and disability resolved. Mild to moderate injection-site reactions were common and were sometimes associated with lipohypertrophy. Low anti-asfotase alfa antibody titers were noted in all patients. No evidence emerged for clinically important ectopic calcification or treatment resistance. Conclusions. Asfotase alfa enzyme replacement therapy has substantial and sustained efficacy with a good safety profile for children suffering from HPP. Trial Registration. NCT00952484 ( and NCT01203826 ( Funding. Alexion Pharmaceuticals Inc. and Shriners Hospitals for Children.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial, Phase II
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Alkaline Phosphatase / deficiency
  • Alkaline Phosphatase / genetics
  • Alkaline Phosphatase / therapeutic use*
  • Child
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Hypophosphatasia / drug therapy*
  • Immunoglobulin G / therapeutic use*
  • Male
  • Quality of Life
  • Recombinant Fusion Proteins / therapeutic use*


  • Immunoglobulin G
  • Recombinant Fusion Proteins
  • Alkaline Phosphatase
  • asfotase alfa

Associated data