Assessmentsvon Hippel-Lindau disease
von Hippel-Lindau disease
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Content Reviewers:Yifan Xiao, MD
Contributors:Ahmad El-Gammal, MBBS, Zachary Kevorkian, MSMI, Tanner Marshall, MS, Evan Debevec-McKenney
It codes for proteins that degrade hypoxia-inducible transcription factor, or HIF. HIF upregulates genes that code for platelet-derived and vascular endothelial growth factors, both of which promote new blood vessel formation and cell growth.
In VHL disease, this tumor suppressor gene is mutated which increases HIF, PDGF, VEGF, and ultimately the risk of tumor formation.
VHL disease is about as common as Huntington Disease, occurring in 1 in 36,000 people.
It is inherited in an autosomal dominant pattern, meaning that a VHL patient has a 50% chance of passing it on to each kid they have.
20% of VHL patients have a de novo or new mutation, meaning they are the first VHL patient in their family.
Alright, the most common tumor type in VHL is hemangioblastoma, a benign blood vessel tumor occurring in about 60% of VHL patients.
In the eyes, it can cause blindness by detaching the retina.
In the brain and spinal cord, a tumor or the accompanying cyst causes problems when it pushes against surrounding tissue.
Less common are benign cysts and cyst-like tumors called cystadenomas.
Cystadenomas can develop in the broad ligament in women, and the epididymis in men, and incidental cysts can occur in the liver, lung, kidney and pancreas in both men and women.
Some tumors associated with VHL can be cancerous.