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1/22. Clinical, pathologic, and neurochemical studies of an unusual case of neuronal storage disease with lamellar cytoplasmic inclusions: a new genetic disorder?

    A child of first-cousin Puerto Rican parents had global developmental delay, failure to thrive, and hypotonia since early infancy. At 1 1/2 years of age, she developed clinical and electrophysiologic evidence of progressive motor and sensory neuropathy. At 2 1/2 years, she developed visual impairment and optic atrophy followed by gradual involvement of the 7th, 9th, 10th, and 12th cranial nerves. Uncontrollable myoclonic seizures began at 4 years and she died at 6 years of age. Motor nerve conduction velocities were initially normal and later became markedly slowed. Sensory distal latency responses were absent. Lysosomal enzyme activities in leukocytes and fibroblasts were normal. sural nerve and two muscle biopsies showed only nondiagnostic abnormalities. Electron microscopy of lymphocytes, skin, and fibroblasts showed cytoplasmic inclusions. light microscopy of frontal cortex biopsy showed neuronal storage material staining positively with Luxol fast blue, and electron microscopy showed cytoplasmic membranous bodies in neurons, suggesting an accumulation of a ganglioside. At autopsy, all organs were small but otherwise normal and without abnormal storage cells in the liver, spleen, or bone marrow. Anterior spinal nerve roots showed loss of large myelinated axons. The brain was small and atrophic; cortical neurons showed widespread accumulation of storage material, most marked in the pyramidal cell layer of the hippocampus. Subcortical white matter was gliotic with loss of axons and myelin sheaths. In cortical gray matter there was a 35% elevation of total gangliosides, with a 16-fold increase in GM3, a three- to four-fold increase in GM2 gangliosides, and a 15-fold elevation of lactosyl ceramide. GM3 sialidase activity was normal in gray matter at 3.1 nmols/mg protein per hour and lactosyl ceraminidase I and II activities were 70% to 80% of normal. In white matter, total myelin was reduced by 50% but its composition was normal. Phospholipid distribution and sphingomyelin content were normal in gray matter, white matter, and in the liver. These biochemical findings were interpreted as nonspecific abnormalities. The nature of the neuronal storage substance remains to be determined.
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2/22. Early-infantile galactosialidosis: prenatal presentation and postnatal follow-up.

    Galactosialidosis (GS) is an autosomal recessive condition caused by combined deficiency of the lysosomal enzymes beta-galactosidase and alpha-neuraminidase. The combined deficiency has been found to result from a defect in protective protein/cathepsin a (PPCA), an intralysosomal protein which protects these enzymes from premature proteolytic processing. The most severe form of GS, the early-infantile form, results in early onset of edema, ascites, visceromegaly, and skeletal dysplasia. We report a case of early-infantile GS in a male infant who presented with nonimmune fetal hydrops (NIH), "coarse" facial appearance, massive fluid-filled inguinal hernias, multiple telangiectasia, and diffuse hypopigmentation; he subsequently developed visceromegaly. The diagnosis of GS was confirmed biochemically and the defect in PPCA characterized at the protein level. Examination of fetal peripheral blood smears sampled at 30 weeks gestation demonstrated vacuolation of lymphocytes, suggesting blood film examination may be a useful screening tool for cases of NIH where a metabolic disorder is suspected. Skeletal radiography at birth demonstrated punctate epiphyses of the femora, calcanei, and sacrum. We present a discussion of and differential diagnosis for this radiographic finding. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first case of early-infantile GS presenting with stippled epiphyses.
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3/22. Intrauterine fetal death due to Farber disease: case report.

    We report a case of Farber disease in a fetus who died in utero at a gestational age of 29 weeks. Macroscopic examination showed moderate postmortem changes in a microcephalic female fetus (46,XX) with mild internal hydrops, two vessels in the umbilical cord, and a moderately enlarged, relatively well-preserved spleen. Microscopic examination showed foamy cells in the spleen. Electron microscopic examination revealed the presence of Farber bodies within these foamy cells. Enzyme studies of the fetus were not possible because all tissues were formalin fixed. lipids were extracted from formalin-fixed tissues and increased levels of ceramide and the presence of hydroxyceramide in tissue of the spleen, liver, and lung were found. Glucosylceramide was not increased excluding saposin-precursor-deficiency. Because of these findings, both parents were tested for acid ceramidase activity in their leukocytes. They both had markedly reduced enzyme activity consistent with heterozygosity for Farber disease. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first published case of Farber disease in Dutch nonconsanguineous parents.
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4/22. Molecular analysis of acid ceramidase deficiency in patients with Farber disease.

    Farber disease is a rare, autosomal recessively inherited sphingolipid storage disorder due to the deficient activity of lysosomal acid ceramidase, leading to the accumulation of ceramide in cells and tissues. Here we report the identification of six novel mutations in the acid ceramidase gene causing Farber disease: three point mutations resulting in single amino acid substitutions, one intronic splice site mutation resulting in exon skipping, and two point mutations also leading to occasional or complete exon skipping. Of interest, these latter two mutations occurred in adjacent nucleotides and led to abnormal splicing of the same exon. Expression of the mutated acid ceramidase cDNAs in COS-1 cells and subsequent determination of acid ceramidase residual enzyme activity demonstrated that each of these mutations was the direct cause of the acid ceramidase deficiency in the respective patients. In contrast, two known polymorphisms had no effect on acid ceramidase activity. Metabolic labeling studies in fibroblasts of four patients showed that even though acid ceramidase precursor protein was synthesized in these individuals, rapid proteolysis of the mutated, mature acid ceramidase occurred within the lysosome.
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5/22. New mutations in the PPBG gene lead to loss of PPCA protein which affects the level of the beta-galactosidase/neuraminidase complex and the EBP-receptor.

    We describe the clinical findings, and the molecular and biochemical studies in an Italian family with recurrent hydrops fetalis due to galactosialidosis (GS). GS is a rare lysosomal storage disorder caused by a deficiency of the protective protein/cathepsin a (PPCA). This protein forms a high-molecular-weight complex with the hydrolases beta-galactosidase (GLB1) and neuraminidase (NEU1). By virtue of this association these two enzymes are correctly compartmentalized in lysosomes and protected against rapid proteolytic degradation. Controversial data show that PPCA is also present in a second complex, including the elastin Binding Protein (EBP) the EBP-receptor, which is involved in elastogenesis, and NEU1. We investigated the potential role of the PPCA in both complexes. Two new genetic lesions (c60delG and IVS2 1 G > T) that lead to a frameshift and a premature stop codon were detected in the PPCA cDNA and genomic dna of the patient. The deleterious effect of such mutations was confirmed by the complete absence of the PPCA protein on Western blots. Thus, we examined the effect of the loss of PPCA on the two protein complexes in the patient's fibroblasts. Interestingly, a reduced amount of both GLB1 and EBP proteins was detected. These data confirm that PPCA is present in two functional complexes one with GLB1 and NEU1 in the lysosomal lumen and the other with EBP at the cell surface. The reduction in GLB1 and EBP confirms that PPCA is essential for their integrity.
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6/22. Successful pregnancy outcome in a patient with fabry disease receiving enzyme replacement therapy with agalsidase alfa.

    fabry disease is an inherited lysosomal storage disease caused by deficiency of alpha-galactosidase A. enzyme replacement therapy for this multisystem progressive disease has been available only since 2001. We here report the first known successful pregnancy of a female patient receiving such therapy.
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keywords = enzyme replacement therapy, enzyme replacement, replacement therapy, enzyme, replacement
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7/22. Difficulty in recognizing multiple sulfatase deficiency in an infant.

    We describe the difficulty in recognizing multiple sulfatase deficiency (MSD; Online Mendelian Inheritance in Man [OMIM] database No. 272200) in an infant. MSD is a rare autosomal recessive disorder that affects the posttranslational activation of various sulfatase enzymes. It is both biochemically and clinically variable. Currently, there are 12 known sulfatases in humans, and the clinical presentation of MSD is a unique composite of those individual enzyme defects. Here we report a black girl who presented with bilateral broad thumbs and great toes, both with angulation deformities at birth. rubinstein-taybi syndrome (OMIM No. 180849) was considered initially. The detection of inclusion bodies in her white blood cells at 37 months of age led to the appropriate diagnostic workups for lysosomal storage diseases. Elevation of urine mucopolysaccharides provided additional clues, and the fibroblast enzyme assays finally established the diagnosis. Broad thumbs and great toes are rare features of MSD, and to the best of our knowledge such a bilateral congenital anomaly with angulation deformities has never been reported before to be associated with MSD.
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8/22. farber lipogranulomatosis: clinical and molecular genetic analysis reveals a novel mutation in an Indian family.

    Farber disease is a rare lysosomal storage disorder caused by a deficiency of the acid ceramidase enzyme, leading to the accumulation of ceramide in various tissues. It usually manifests within a few months after birth with a unique triad of symptoms, including painful and progressive deformed joints, progressive hoarseness and subcutaneous nodules. The disease is inherited as an autosomal recessive trait, and mutations in the N-acylsphingosine amidohydrolase (ASAH1) gene, which codes for the acid ceramidase enzyme, have been shown to cause the disease. In the current study, we report the identification of a novel disease-causing mutation in the ASAH1 gene that results in Farber disease in an Indian family. The mutation was identified in the eighth exon and is a missense mutation resulting in replacement of valine by leucine at codon 182. Two affected siblings harboured the identical mutation. The possible mechanism(s) of disease caused by this mutation are discussed.
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keywords = enzyme, replacement
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9/22. lysosomal storage diseases presenting as transient or persistent hydrops fetalis.

    Two cases of beta-glucuronidase deficiency (mucopolysaccharidosis vii), presented with fetal hydrops at 20 and 26 weeks of gestation. The enzyme deficiency was observed in cultured amniotic fluid cells and in fetal plasma from cord-blood and was confirmed after termination of pregnancy. A third case presented with transient ascites at 6.5 months of gestation. Mild dysmorphic features at birth and gradual neurological deterioration were observed. Deficiency of beta-galactosidase was documented confirming a GM1 gangliosidosis. Evidence has accumulated that fetuses affected by lysosomal diseases, may present with transient or persistent hydrops fetalis. The exact frequency is however not known. Further diagnostic studies in persistent or transient hydrops fetalis, looking for lysosomal and other metabolic diseases, whenever major causes of hydrops fetalis have been excluded, are therefore indicated. amniocentesis and cordocentesis should always be performed.
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10/22. Generalized lysosomal storage in Yunis Varon syndrome.

    Muscle biopsy in a neonate with features of Yunis Varon syndrome revealed a vacuolar myopathy with evidence of lysosomal storage disease. Similar vacuoles were also present in heart, cartilage, central nervous system and cultured fibroblasts. Although the histologic findings in the central nervous system resembled those of infantile acid maltase deficiency, the essayed lysosomal enzymes were normal. chromatography of urine revealed abnormal bands of unidentified oligosaccharides. This is the first report of generalized storage disease in Yunis Varon syndrome. The biochemical defect is unknown.
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