Human adenosine deaminase 2 deficiency: A multi-faceted inborn error of immunity.

Research paper by Leen L Moens, Michael M Hershfield, Katrijn K Arts, Ivona I Aksentijevich, Isabelle I Meyts

Indexed on: 20 Dec '18Published on: 20 Dec '18Published in: Immunological Reviews


Human adenosine deaminase 1 deficiency was described in the 1970s to cause severe combined immunodeficiency. The residual adenosine deaminase activity in these patients was attributed to adenosine deaminase 2. Human adenosine deaminase type 2 deficiency (DADA2), due to biallelic deleterious mutations in the ADA2 gene, is the first described monogenic type of small- and medium-size vessel vasculitis. The phenotype of DADA2 also includes lymphoproliferation, cytopenia, and variable degrees of immunodeficiency. The physiological role of ADA2 is still enigmatic hence the pathophysiology of the condition is unclear. Preliminary data showed that in the absence of ADA2, macrophage differentiation is skewed to a pro-inflammatory M1 subset, which is detrimental for endothelial integrity. The inflammatory phenotype responds well to anti-TNF therapy with etanercept and that is the first-line treatment for prevention of severe vascular events including strokes. The classic immunosuppressive drugs are not successful in controlling the disease activity. However, hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT) has been shown to be a definitive cure in DADA2 patients who present with a severe cytopenia. HSCT can also cure the vascular phenotype and is the treatment modality for patients' refractory to anti-cytokine therapies. In this review, we describe what is currently known about the molecular mechanisms of DADA2. Further research on the pathophysiology of this multifaceted condition is needed to fine-tune and steer future therapeutic strategies. © 2018 John Wiley & Sons A/S. Published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd.