A congenital deficiency in the enzyme is associated with X-linked ichthyosis, a scaly-skin disease affecting roughly 1 in every 2,000 to 6,000 males. The excessive skin scaling or hyperkeratosis is caused by a lack of breakdown and thus accumulation of cholesterol sulfate, a steroid that stabilizes cell membranes and adds cohesion, in the outer layers of the skin.
Genetic deletions including STS are associated with an increased risk of developmental and mood disorders (and associated traits), and of atrial fibrillation or atrial flutter in males 
Steroid sulfates like DHEA sulfate and estrone sulfate serve as large biologically inert reservoirs for conversion into androgens and estrogens, respectively, and hence are of significance for androgen- and estrogen-dependent conditions like prostate cancer, breast cancer, endometriosis, and others. A number of clinical trials have been performed with inhibitors of the enzyme that have demonstrated clinical benefit, particularly in oncology and so far up to Phase II. The non-steroidal drug Irosustat has been the most studied to date.
Steryl-sulfatase is also known as arylsulfatase, steroid sulfatase, sterol sulfatase, dehydroepiandrosterone sulfate sulfatase, arylsulfatase C, steroid 3-sulfatase, steroid sulfate sulfohydrolase, dehydroepiandrosterone sulfatase, pregnenolone sulfatase, phenolic steroid sulfatase, 3-beta-hydroxysteroid sulfate sulfatase, as well as by its systematic namesteryl-sulfate sulfohydrolase.
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