Genetic forms of neurohypophyseal diabetes insipidus

Jonas Rutishauser*, Martin Spiess, Peter Kopp

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

14 Scopus citations


Neurohypophyseal diabetes insipidus is characterized by polyuria and polydipsia owing to partial or complete deficiency of the antidiuretic hormone, arginine vasopressin (AVP). Although in most patients non-hereditary causes underlie the disorder, genetic forms have long been recognized and studied both in vivo and in vitro. In most affected families, the disease is transmitted in an autosomal dominant manner, whereas autosomal recessive forms are much less frequent. Both phenotypes can be caused by mutations in the vasopressin-neurophysin II (AVP) gene. In transfected cells expressing dominant mutations, the mutated hormone precursor is retained in the endoplasmic reticulum, where it forms fibrillar aggregates. Autopsy studies in humans and a murine knock-in model suggest that the dominant phenotype results from toxicity to vasopressinergic neurons, but the mechanisms leading to cell death remain unclear. Recessive transmission results from AVP with reduced biologic activity or the deletion of the locus. Genetic neurohypophyseal diabetes insipidus occurring in the context of diabetes mellitus, optic atrophy, and deafness is termed DIDMOAD or Wolfram syndrome, a genetically and phenotypically heterogeneous autosomal recessive disorder caused by mutations in the wolframin (WFS 1) gene.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)249-262
Number of pages14
JournalBest Practice and Research: Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism
Issue number2
StatePublished - Mar 1 2016


  • AVP gene
  • Wolfram syndrome
  • arginine vasopressin
  • diabetes insipidus
  • endoplasmic reticulum
  • mutation
  • neurogenic
  • neurophysin

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
  • Endocrinology


Dive into the research topics of 'Genetic forms of neurohypophyseal diabetes insipidus'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this