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1/3. A new case of alpha-n-acetylgalactosaminidase deficiency with angiokeratoma corporis diffusum, with Meniere's syndrome and without mental retardation.

    alpha-n-acetylgalactosaminidase (alpha-NAGA) deficiency is a rare hereditary lysosomal storage disease, and only three alpha-NAGA-deficient patients with angiokeratoma corporis diffusum (Kanzaki) have been described. We report a further case in a 47-year-old Japanese woman, the product of a consanguineous marriage. The remarkable findings in this patient were her normal intelligence, Meniere's syndrome, disturbance of peripheral sensory nerves, hearing loss and cardiac hypertrophy. alpha-NAGA enzyme activity in her plasma was 0.77% of the normal value. Other enzyme activities, such as alpha-galactosidase, beta-galactosidase, alpha-l-fucosidase, beta-mannosidase and aspartylglucosaminidase, were within normal limits. A large quantity of amino acid O-glycans was detected in her urine. Gene analysis revealed a novel point mutation (G-->A transition) at nucleotide 11018 (986 in the cDNA) resulting in an Arg-329-Gln substitution. Kanzaki disease has the same enzyme defect as Schindler disease, but the manifestations are quite different. ( info)

2/3. Startle epilepsy complicating aspartylglucosaminuria.

    A 21-year-old right-handed man with definite diagnosis of aspartylglucosaminuria (AGU) presented with a 5-year history of progressive severe gait disturbance with frequent falls and generalized epileptic seizures triggered by unexpected stimuli. At one time, he was confined to a wheelchair because of the frequent falls. Electromyogram recording showed a large, excessive and not habituating motor startle response, with the classical and stereotyped order of muscle recruitment. During video-polygraphic recording, we recorded a reflex generalized tonic seizure triggered by a loud, unexpected acoustic stimulus. brain magnetic resonance (MR) revealed no structural abnormality. A diagnosis of abnormal startle and startle epilepsy (SE) was made. The addition of clonazepam to valproate and phenobarbital led to a dramatic improvement in his abnormal startle and SE, and the patient was able to walk alone unaided. This report illustrates, for the first time, that abnormal startle and SE may occur in AGU and complicate its clinical picture. Recognition of this entity in AGU is important, as progressive gait disorder with frequent falls could be easily misinterpreted as an additional irreversible manifestation of the ongoing neurological deterioration characteristic of AGU. ( info)

3/3. neurologic manifestations of Kanzaki disease.

    We describe the neurologic findings in a patient with alpha-n-acetylgalactosaminidase deficiency (Kanzaki disease). Clinical and electrophysiologic studies revealed sensory-motor polyneuropathy, and sural nerve pathology showed decreased density of myelinated fibers with axonal degeneration. The patient had mildly impaired intellectual function with abnormal brain MRI and sensory-neuronal hearing impairment with repeated episodes of vertigo attacks. These findings suggest that Kanzaki disease may develop neurologic complications in the CNS and peripheral nervous system. ( info)

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