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Disease Profile

Progressive familial intrahepatic cholestasis type 2

Prevalence estimates on Rare Medical Network websites are calculated based on data available from numerous sources, including US and European government statistics, the NIH, Orphanet, and published epidemiologic studies. Rare disease population data is recognized to be highly variable, and based on a wide variety of source data and methodologies, so the prevalence data on this site should be assumed to be estimated and cannot be considered to be absolutely correct.

1-9 / 100 000

US Estimated

Europe Estimated

Age of onset






Autosomal dominant A pathogenic variant in only one gene copy in each cell is sufficient to cause an autosomal dominant disease.


Autosomal recessive Pathogenic variants in both copies of each gene of the chromosome are needed to cause an autosomal recessive disease and observe the mutant phenotype.


dominant X-linked dominant inheritance, sometimes referred to as X-linked dominance, is a mode of genetic inheritance by which a dominant gene is carried on the X chromosome.


recessive Pathogenic variants in both copies of a gene on the X chromosome cause an X-linked recessive disorder.


Mitochondrial or multigenic Mitochondrial genetic disorders can be caused by changes (mutations) in either the mitochondrial DNA or nuclear DNA that lead to dysfunction of the mitochondria and inadequate production of energy.


Multigenic or multifactor Inheritance involving many factors, of which at least one is genetic but none is of overwhelming importance, as in the causation of a disease by multiple genetic and environmental factors.


Not applicable


Other names (AKA)

PFIC2; Severe ABCB11 deficiency


Congenital and Genetic Diseases; Digestive Diseases; Metabolic disorders


Progressive familial intrahepatic cholestasis type 2 (PFIC2) is a rare condition that affects the liver. People with this condition generally develop signs and symptoms during infancy, which may include severe itching, jaundice, failure to thrive, portal hypertension (high blood pressure in the vein that provides blood to the liver) and hepatosplenomegaly (enlarged liver and spleen). PFIC2 generally progresses to liver failure in the first few years of life. Affected people also have an increased risk of developing hepatocellular carcinoma (a form of liver cancer). PFIC2 is caused by change (mutations) in the ABCB11 gene and is inherited in an autosomal recessive manner. Treatment may include ursodeoxycholic acid therapy to prevent liver damage, surgery and/or liver transplantation.[1][2][3]


This table lists symptoms that people with this disease may have. For most diseases, symptoms will vary from person to person. People with the same disease may not have all the symptoms listed. This information comes from a database called the Human Phenotype Ontology (HPO) . The HPO collects information on symptoms that have been described in medical resources. The HPO is updated regularly. Use the HPO ID to access more in-depth information about a symptom.

Medical Terms Other Names
Learn More:
Percent of people who have these symptoms is not available through HPO
Autosomal recessive inheritance
Scar tissue replaces healthy tissue in the liver
Conjugated hyperbilirubinemia
Death in childhood
Watery stool
Elevated alkaline phosphatase
Greatly elevated alkaline phosphatase
High serum alkaline phosphatase
Increased alkaline phosphatase
Increased serum alkaline phosphatase

[ more ]

Failure to thrive
Faltering weight
Weight faltering

[ more ]

Fat malabsorption
Hepatocellular carcinoma
Enlarged liver
Infantile onset
Onset in first year of life
Onset in infancy

[ more ]

Intermittent jaundice
Intermittent yellow skin
Intermittent yellowing of skin

[ more ]

Intrahepatic cholestasis
Itchy skin
Skin itching

[ more ]

Short stature
Decreased body height
Small stature

[ more ]

Increased spleen size


Making a diagnosis for a genetic or rare disease can often be challenging. Healthcare professionals typically look at a person’s medical history, symptoms, physical exam, and laboratory test results in order to make a diagnosis. The following resources provide information relating to diagnosis and testing for this condition. If you have questions about getting a diagnosis, you should contact a healthcare professional.

Testing Resources

  • The Genetic Testing Registry (GTR) provides information about the genetic tests for this condition. The intended audience for the GTR is health care providers and researchers. Patients and consumers with specific questions about a genetic test should contact a health care provider or a genetics professional.


    Support and advocacy groups can help you connect with other patients and families, and they can provide valuable services. Many develop patient-centered information and are the driving force behind research for better treatments and possible cures. They can direct you to research, resources, and services. Many organizations also have experts who serve as medical advisors or provide lists of doctors/clinics. Visit the group’s website or contact them to learn about the services they offer. Inclusion on this list is not an endorsement by GARD.

    Organizations Supporting this Disease

      Learn more

      These resources provide more information about this condition or associated symptoms. The in-depth resources contain medical and scientific language that may be hard to understand. You may want to review these resources with a medical professional.

      Where to Start

      • Genetics Home Reference (GHR) contains information on Progressive familial intrahepatic cholestasis type 2. This website is maintained by the National Library of Medicine.

        In-Depth Information

        • Medscape Reference provides information on this topic. You may need to register to view the medical textbook, but registration is free.
        • The Monarch Initiative brings together data about this condition from humans and other species to help physicians and biomedical researchers. Monarch’s tools are designed to make it easier to compare the signs and symptoms (phenotypes) of different diseases and discover common features. This initiative is a collaboration between several academic institutions across the world and is funded by the National Institutes of Health. Visit the website to explore the biology of this condition.
        • Online Mendelian Inheritance in Man (OMIM) is a catalog of human genes and genetic disorders. Each entry has a summary of related medical articles. It is meant for health care professionals and researchers. OMIM is maintained by Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. 
        • Orphanet is a European reference portal for information on rare diseases and orphan drugs. Access to this database is free of charge.
        • PubMed is a searchable database of medical literature and lists journal articles that discuss Progressive familial intrahepatic cholestasis type 2. Click on the link to view a sample search on this topic.


          1. Progressive familial intrahepatic cholestasis type 2. Orphanet. May 2011; https://www.orpha.net/consor/cgi-bin/OC_Exp.php?lng=en&Expert=79304.
          2. Kennedy M. Progressive Familial Intrahepatic Cholestasis. Medscape Reference. August 2013; https://emedicine.medscape.com/article/932794-overview.
          3. Progressive familial intrahepatic cholestasis. Genetics Home Reference. December 2009; https://ghr.nlm.nih.gov/condition/progressive-familial-intrahepatic-cholestasis.