You are reading a NORD Rare Disease Report Abstract. NORD’s full collection of reports on over 1200 rare diseases is available to subscribers (click here for details). We are now also offering two full rare disease reports per day to visitors on our Web site.
NORD is very grateful to Jakub Tolar, MD, PhD, Division of Pediatric Hematology-Oncology, Department of Pediatrics, Blood and Marrow Transplantation, University of Minnesota, for the assistance in the preparation of this report.
Synonyms of Wolman Disease
- Acid Cholesteryl Ester Hydrolase Deficiency, Wolman Type
- Lysosomal Acid Lipase Deficiency, Wolman Type
- No subdivisions found.
Wolman disease is a rare genetic disorder characterized by complete absence of an enzyme known as lysosomal acid lipase (LIPA or LAL). This enzyme is required to breakdown (metabolize) certain fats (lipids) in the body. Without the LIPA enzyme, certain fats may abnormally accumulate in the tissues and organs of the body causing a variety of symptoms. Wolman disease may cause bloating or swelling of the stomach (abdominal distention), vomiting, and significant enlargement of the liver or spleen (hepatosplenomegaly). Life-threatening complications often develop during early childhood. Wolman disease is caused by mutations of the lysosomal acid lipase (LIPA) gene. The disorder is inherited as an autosomal recessive trait.
Wolman disease is the most severe expression of LIPA deficiency. Milder forms of the disorder are known as cholesteryl ester storage deficiency (see the Related Disorders section of this report). Wolman disease belongs to a group of diseases known as lysosomal storage disorders. Lysosomes are particles bound in membranes within cells that break down certain fats and carbohydrates. Defective lysosomal enzymes associated with Wolman disease leads to the accumulation of certain fatty substances (mucolipids) and certain complex carbohydrates (mucopolysaccharides) within the cells of many tissues of the body.
Organizations related to Wolman Disease
The information in NORD’s Rare Disease Database is for educational purposes only. It should never be used for diagnostic or treatment purposes. If you have questions regarding a medical condition, always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health professional. NORD’s reports provide a brief overview of rare diseases. For more specific information, we encourage you to contact your personal physician or the agencies listed as “Resources” on this report.
The National Organization for Rare Disorders (NORD) web site, its databases, and the contents thereof are copyrighted by NORD. No part of the NORD web site, databases, or the contents may be copied in any way, including but not limited to the following: electronically downloading, storing in a retrieval system, or redistributing for any commercial purposes without the express written permission of NORD. Permission is hereby granted to print one hard copy of the information on an individual disease for your personal use, provided that such content is in no way modified, and the credit for the source (NORD) and NORD’s copyright notice are included on the printed copy. Any other electronic reproduction or other printed versions is strictly prohibited.
Copyright 2009, 2012
NORD's Rare Disease Information Database is copyrighted and may not be published without the written consent of NORD.