, Volume 5, Issue 3, pp 87-98

Hereditary periodic fever and reactive amyloidosis

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Hereditary periodic fever syndromes (HPF) are a group of diseases characterised by recurrences of fever and inflammation separated by symptom-free intervals. Familial Mediterranean fever (FMF) is the most frequent entity within this group of disorders which further consists of hyperimmunoglobulinaemia D and periodic fever syndrome (HIDS), tumour necrosis factor receptor-associated periodic syndrome (TRAPS) and cryopyrin-associated periodic syndrome (CAPS). In recent years the causative genes have been identified. Reactive amyloidosis is a severe complication of HPFs. This is caused by deposition of fibrils that consist of the proteolytically cleaved acutephase protein serum amyloid A (SAA). Several factors have been identified that modulate the risk for developing amyloidosis, including SAA concentrations, polymorphisms in the SAA gene and ethnic origin. Furthermore, the risk of developing amyloidosis varies widely between the different HPFs. Colchicine is the cornerstone in the management of FMF, as it reduces the severity and frequency of attacks and is also effective in preventing amyloidosis. In the other HPFs, the introduction of anticytokine-based therapies is a promising new option in treating these inflammatory conditions and they potentially can prevent amyloidosis.