Management of cystine nephrolithiasis with alpha-mercaptopropionylglycine

C. Y C Pak, C. Fuller, K. Sakhaee, J. E. Zerwekh, B. V. Adams

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

178 Scopus citations


The effect of long-term treatment with alpha-mercaptopropionylglycine was examined in 66 patients with cystinuria. Of the patients 49 took D-penicillamine before therapy, whereas 17 did not. Over-all side effects to alpha-mercaptopropionylglycine were common, and occurred in 75.5 per cent of the patients with and 64.7 per cent without a history of D-penicillamine treatment, compared to 83.7 per cent who suffered toxicity to D-penicillamine. Serious adverse reactions requiring cessation of therapy were less common with alpha-mercaptopropionylglycine. Among the patients who took both drugs 30.6 per cent had to stop taking alpha-mercaptopropionylglycine, whereas 69.4 per cent could tolerate D-penicillamine. Of the latter group with toxicity to D-penicillamine therapy only 5.9 per cent had side effects to alpha-mercaptopropionylglycine of sufficient severity to require withdrawal. Alpha-mercaptopropionylglycine was equally as affective as D-penicillamine in reducing cystine excretion. During long-term treatment with alpha-mercaptopropionylglycine (average dose 1,193 mg per day) urinary cystine levels were maintained at 350 to 560 mg per day and urinary cystine was kept at undersaturated levels. Commensurate with these changes, alpha-mercaptopropionylglycine produced remission of stone formation in 63 to 71 per cent of the patients and reduced individual stone formation rate in 81 to 94 per cent. Thus, alpha-mercaptopropionylglycine has a definite therapeutic role in cystinuric patients with toxicity to D-penicillamine.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1003-1008
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Urology
Issue number5
StatePublished - Jan 1 1986

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Urology


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