Topical Review| Volume 53, ISSUE 1, P23-30, July 2015

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Long-Term Everolimus Treatment in Individuals With Tuberous Sclerosis Complex: A Review of the Current Literature



      Tuberous sclerosis complex is a genetic disease usually caused by mutations to either TSC1 or TSC2, where its gene products are involved in the inhibition of the mammalian target of rapamycin pathway. Under normal cellular conditions, mammalian target of rapamycin (mTOR) regulates cell growth and proliferation in response to signals from nutrients or growth factors, but loss of TSC1 or TSC2 leads to overactivation of mTOR and uncontrolled cellular proliferation. Everolimus is an mTOR inhibitor approved for use in a number of indications where mTOR overactivation is implicated, including tuberous sclerosis complex.

      Methods and patients

      We conducted a literature search of PubMed to identify published articles about the long-term efficacy and safety of everolimus in patients with tuberous sclerosis complex.


      The short-term efficacy and safety of everolimus in patients with tuberous sclerosis complex has been demonstrated in placebo-controlled trials, and open-label extension studies are ongoing to monitor long-term effects, including safety. Examples of regrowth following discontinuation of mTOR inhibitors suggest that everolimus needs to be given indefinitely to maintain suppression of subependymal giant cell astrocytoma and other tuberous sclerosis complex–associated disease manifestations. No additional safety concerns have been reported to date with long-term administration of everolimus, but published long-term data (>1 year treatment) are currently limited to a small open-label trial and case reports for this relatively rare condition.


      From the limited data available, long-term administration of everolimus appears feasible with few safety concerns beyond those associated with short-term use. Further investigation is needed to determine the long-term efficacy and safety of everolimus in patients with tuberous sclerosis complex.


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