Skip to content

    Children's Health

    Font Size
    A
    A
    A

    Cystinosis

    Important
    It is possible that the main title of the report Cystinosis is not the name you expected.

    Disorder Subdivisions

    • infantile nephropathic cystinosis
    • intermediate cystinosis
    • non-nephropathic cystinosis

    General Discussion

    Summary
    Cystinosis is a rare, multisystem genetic disorder characterized by the accumulation of an amino acid called cystine in different tissues and organs of the body including the kidneys, eyes, muscles, liver, pancreas and brain. Generally, cystinosis is broken down into three different forms known as nephropathic cystinosis, intermediate cystinosis and non-nephropathic (or ocular) cystinosis. The age of onset, symptoms, and severity of cystinosis can vary greatly from one person to another. Nephropathic cystinosis presents in infancy and is the most common and severe form. Early detection and prompt treatment is critical in slowing the development and progression of symptoms associated with cystinosis. The kidneys and eyes are the two organs most often affected. Individuals with nephropathic or intermediate cystinosis ultimately require a kidney transplant. Non-nephropathic cystinosis only affects the corneas of the eyes. Cystinosis is caused by mutations of the CTNS gene and is inherited as an autosomal recessive disease.

    Introduction
    Cystinosis was first described in the medical literature in 1903 by Abderhalden. Cystinosis is classified as a lysosomal storage disorder. Lysosomes are membrane bound compartments within cells that break down certain nutrients such as fats, proteins and carbohydrates. Lysosomes are the primary digestive unit within cells. Some enzymes within lysosomes break down (metabolize) these nutrients, while other enzymes transport the leftover metabolic products (such as cystine) out of the lysosome. The lack of such a specific transporter causes cystine to accumulate in lysosomes in cells throughout the body. Cystine forms crystals (crystallizes) in many types of cells and slowly damages affected organs.

    Resources

    CLIMB (Children Living with Inherited Metabolic Diseases)
    Climb Building
    176 Nantwich Road
    Crewe, CW2 6BG
    United Kingdom
    Tel: 4408452412173
    Fax: 4408452412174
    Email: enquiries@climb.org.uk
    Internet: http://www.CLIMB.org.uk

    Vaincre Les Maladies Lysosomales
    2 Ter Avenue
    Massy, 91300
    France
    Tel: 0169754030
    Fax: 0160111583
    Email: accueil@vml-asso.org
    Internet: http://www.vml-asso.org

    National Kidney Foundation
    30 East 33rd Street
    New York, NY 10016
    Tel: (212)889-2210
    Fax: (212)689-9261
    Tel: (800)622-9010
    Email: info@kidney.org
    Internet: http://www.kidney.org

    Cystinosis Foundation, Inc.
    58 Miramonte Drive
    Moraga, CA 94556
    Tel: (925)631-1588
    Tel: (888)631-1588
    Email: jean.cystinosis@sbcglobal.net
    Internet: http://www.cystinosisfoundation.org

    NIH/National Kidney and Urologic Diseases Information Clearinghouse
    3 Information Way
    Bethesda, MD 20892-3580
    Fax: (703)738-4929
    Tel: (800)891-5390
    TDD: (866)569-1162
    Email: nkudic@info.niddk.nih.gov
    Internet: http://www.kidney.niddk.nih.gov/

    Cystinosis Research Network
    302 Whytegate Court
    Lake Forest, IL 60045
    USA
    Tel: (847)735-0471
    Fax: (847)235-2773
    Tel: (866)276-3669
    Email: info@cystinosis.org
    Internet: http://www.cystinosis.org

    Hide & Seek Foundation for Lysosomal Disease Research
    6475 East Pacific Coast Highway Suite 466
    Long Beach, CA 90803
    Tel: (877)621-1122
    Fax: (866)215-8850
    Email: info@hideandseek.org
    Internet: http://www.hideandseek.org

    Cystinosis Research Foundation
    18802 Bardeen Avenue
    Irvine, CA 92612
    Tel: (949)223-7610
    Fax: (949)756-5955
    Email: info@natialieswish.org
    Internet: http://www.cystinosisresearch.org

    Cystinosis Foundtion UK
    174 Corwen Road
    Tilehurst
    Reading, RG30 4TA
    United Kingdom
    Tel: 00441189414232
    Fax: 00441189414232
    Internet: http://www.cystinosis.org.uk/

    For a Complete Report:

    This is an abstract of a report from the National Organization for Rare Disorders (NORD). A copy of the complete report can be downloaded free from the NORD website for registered users. The complete report contains additional information including symptoms, causes, affected population, related disorders, standard and investigational therapies (if available), and references from medical literature. For a full-text version of this topic, go to www.rarediseases.org and click on Rare Disease Database under "Rare Disease Information".

    The information provided in this report is not intended for diagnostic purposes. It is provided for informational purposes only. NORD recommends that affected individuals seek the advice or counsel of their own personal physicians.

    It is possible that the title of this topic is not the name you selected. Please check the Synonyms listing to find the alternate name(s) and Disorder Subdivision(s) covered by this report

    This disease entry is based upon medical information available through the date at the end of the topic. Since NORD's resources are limited, it is not possible to keep every entry in the Rare Disease Database completely current and accurate. Please check with the agencies listed in the Resources section for the most current information about this disorder.

    For additional information and assistance about rare disorders, please contact the National Organization for Rare Disorders at P.O. Box 1968, Danbury, CT 06813-1968; phone (203) 744-0100; web site www.rarediseases.org or email orphan@rarediseases.org

    Last Updated: 11/5/2012
    Copyright 1986, 1987, 1988, 1990, 1991, 1993, 1994, 1995, 1997, 1998, 1999, 2007, 2011 National Organization for Rare Disorders, Inc.

    WebMD Medical Reference from the National Organization for Rare Disorders

    Last Updated: May 28, 2015
    This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.

    Today on WebMD

    child with red rash on cheeks
    What’s that rash?
    plate of fruit and veggies
    How healthy is your child’s diet?
     
    smiling baby
    Treating diarrhea, fever and more.
    Middle school band practice
    Understanding your child’s changing body.
     

    worried kid
    fitArticle
    jennifer aniston
    Slideshow
     
    Measles virus
    Article
    sick child
    Slideshow
     

    babyapp
    New
    Child with adhd
    Slideshow
     
    rl with friends
    fitSlideshow
    Syringes and graph illustration
    Tool