New York, New York 10032

  • Giant Axonal Neuropathy


Giant Axonal Neuropathy (GAN) is a devastating and rare childhood disease. Children with GAN develop increasing muscle weakness, impaired sensation, and at times mental retardation. GAN starts in infancy, leads to significant disability, and typically leads to death within the first 30 years of life. GAN is caused by a defect in the "gigaxonin" (GAN) gene, resulting in pathologically enlarged and dysfunctional nerves. Currently, there is no effective therapy. To find out what medications can help patients with GAN, the investigators have to conduct clinical trials. In this study, the investigators propose to prepare for future clinical trials and will invite GAN patients to join our research effort. The investigators will examine them regularly to better understand their disease. The visits will include questions, a physical exam, blood drawing, a lumbar puncture, and a skin biopsy. The visits will also include tests that assess the electrical conductivity of the patients' nerves as well as a test to measure the patients' brain wave activity. In addition, the investigators will be performing tests to evaluate the patients' motor function, their vision, and thinking ability. Identifying an effective GAN treatment is very important because there is currently none. Clinical trials are the only way to decide whether a new treatment works in GAN patients or not. With the future objective of conducting clinical trials in GAN, the proposed project has three specific aims. The first is to plan for clinical trials by developing reliable outcome measures, and establishing the infrastructure needed to carry out efficient clinical trials. The second is to further characterize the patient population from a clinical and molecular point of view, and the third aim is to utilize the information gathered in this study to further pre-clinical GAN drug development to select candidate drugs.


Inclusion Criteria: 1. Clinical diagnosis of Giant Axonal Neuropathy. 2. Documentation of the presence of a mutation in the GAN gene as determined by gene sequencing from a CAP/CLIA certified laboratory or an equivalent organization. 3. Parents or if applicable subjects must give informed consent must be capable of complying with the study procedures. 4. Willing and able to comply with all protocol requirements and procedures. Exclusion Criteria: 1. Unwilling or unable to travel to Columbia University Medical Center. 2. Unstable medical condition precluding participation. 3. Significant respiratory compromise that would interfere with safe travel to site of evaluation. 4. Having a contraindication to the MRI safety requirements, including pacemaker or other implanted electrical device, brain stimulator, some types of dental implants, aneurysm clips (metal clips on the wall of a large artery), metallic prostheses (including metal pins and rods, heart valves, and cochlear implants), implanted delivery pump, shrapnel fragments, or history of claustrophobia.



Primary Contact:

Principal Investigator
Darryl DeVivo, MD
Columbia University

Backup Contact:


Location Contact:

New York, New York 10032
United States

There is no listed contact information for this specific location.

Site Status: N/A

Data Source:

Date Processed: June 22, 2021

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