Clinicopathological and molecular characterization of neuronal ceroid lipofuscinosis in the Portuguese population
ABSTRACT A series of 53 Portuguese patients (derived from 43 families) born in the period 1963-1999 have been diagnosed with neuronal ceroid lipofuscinosis (NCL) based on clinicopathological findings. Plotting the cumulative number of new cases per year against the year of birth resulted in a slightly S-shaped curve, with a nearly straight central segment over a period of 14 years (1977-1990) indicating a continuous registration of new cases born during the corresponding time period. In this period the prevalence of overall NCL in the Portuguese population was calculated to be 1.55 per 100.000 live births.Twenty-six patients from 20 unrelated families were further evaluated by combining clinicopathological with biochemical and genetic data. No intra-familial heterogeneity was observed. Four sub-types of childhood NCL were identified: infantile NCL (INCL) with granular osmiophilic inclusions (GROD) and PPT1 deficiency (1/26), classical LINCL with curvilinear (CV) inclusions and tripeptidyl peptidase (TPP1) deficiency (3/26), variant late infantile NCL (LINCL) with fingerprint/curvilinear (FP/CV) inclusions and normal TPP1 enzyme activity (11/26) and juvenile NCL (JNCL) with a mix of FP/CV (11/26). Eight of 11 JNCL patients were homozygous for the 1.02-kb deletion in the CLN3 gene, and 3 were heterozygous with an unidentified mutation in the second allele. The 1.02-kb deletion in the CLN3 gene accounted for 86.3 % (19/22) of CLN3-causing alleles and 36.5 % (19/52) of childhood NCL defects. The causal mutations for CLN1 and CLN2 were V181M (2/2) and R208X (4/6), respectively. CLN1, CLN2 and CLN3 affected 3.8 %, 11.5 % and 42.3 % of NCL Portuguese patients, respectively. In 42.3 % of patients affected by the vLINCL form, CLN3, CLN5 and CLN8 gene defects were excluded by direct sequencing of cDNA. Genetic variants such as CLN6 might therefore cause a significant portion of childhood NCL in the Portuguese population. The relative frequency of classical childhood forms of NCL in the Portuguese population is reported and contributes to the knowledge of genetic epidemiology of these world-widely distributed disorders.
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- "Cerebral cortical involvement typically correlates with progressive degenerative processes that lead to visual loss, decline in cognitive acuity, and chronic epileptic activity   . Occurrence of the disorder varies regionally, as demonstrated by rates of 1.3, 1.55, and 2.0–7.0 per 100,000 live births in the Czech Republic, Portuguese, and Scandinavian populations, respectively   . The relative occurrence is likely to be higher in areas with high rates of consanguineous marriages  "
ABSTRACT: A 31-year-old woman presented with dyspnea and left-sided chest discomfort and was found to have biventricular heart failure with impaired ventricular filling. Clinically, she was thought to have restrictive cardiomyopathy or constrictive pericarditis. Transmission electron microscopy of myocardial tissue unexpectedly revealed crosshatched, curvilinear, and fingerprint depositions, which were characteristic for neuronal ceroid lipofuscinosis. Cardiac involvement by this inherited disorder is discussed in light of the findings in this patient and in 15 other reported cases.Cardiovascular pathology: the official journal of the Society for Cardiovascular Pathology 12/2007; 18(1):44-8. DOI:10.1016/j.carpath.2007.09.004 · 2.34 Impact Factor
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- "The other patient was a compound heterozygous carrying I154del mutation in one allele and [c.829_832delGTCG; c.837delG] in the other resulting in a frameshift after tryptophan 276 . These cases were previously reported as vLINCL patients . In the Portuguese I154del homozygous patients the disease onset occurred around 4 years of age and skin biopsy was performed about 1 year and half later. "
ABSTRACT: The CLN6 vLINCL is caused by molecular defects in CLN6 gene coding for an ER resident transmembrane protein whose function is unknown. In the present study gene expression profiling of CLN6-deficient fibroblasts using cDNA microarray was undertaken in order to provide novel insights into the molecular mechanisms underlying this neurodegenerative fatal disease. Data were validated by qRT-PCR. Statistically significant alterations of expression were observed for 12 transcripts. The two most overexpressed genes, versican and tissue factor pathway inhibitor 2, are related to extracellular matrix (ECM), predicting changes in ECM-related proteins in CLN6-deficient cells. Transcript profiling also suggested alterations in signal transduction pathways, apoptosis and the immune/inflammatory response. Up-regulated genes related to steroidogenesis or signalling, and the relationship between cholesterol dynamics and glycosphingolipid sorting, led to investigation of free cholesterol and gangliosides in CLN6-deficient fibroblasts. Cholesterol accumulation in lysosomes suggests a homeostasis block as a result of CLN6p deficiency. The cholesterol imbalance may affect structure/function of caveolae and lipid rafts, disrupting signalling transduction pathways and sorting cell mechanisms. Alterations in protein/lipid intracellular trafficking would affect the composition and function of endocytic compartments, including lysosomes. Dysfunctional endosomal/lysosomal vesicles may act as one of the triggers for apoptosis and cell death, and for a secondary protective inflammatory response. In conclusion, the data reported provide novel clues into molecular pathophysiological mechanisms of CLN6-deficiency, and may also help in developing disease biomarkers and therapies for this and other neurodegenerative diseases.Biochimica et Biophysica Acta 08/2006; 1762(7):637-46. DOI:10.1016/j.bbadis.2006.06.002 · 4.66 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Batten disease (juvenile neuronal ceroid lipofuscinosis [JNCL]) is an autosomal recessive neurodegenerative disorder characterized by blindness, seizures, and relentless decline in cognitive, motor, and behavioral function. Onset is in the early school years, with progression to death typically by late adolescence. Development of a clinical instrument to quantify severity of illness is a prerequisite to eventual assessment of experimental therapeutic interventions. To develop a clinical rating instrument to assess motor, behavioral, and functional capability in JNCL. A clinical rating instrument, the Unified Batten Disease Rating Scale (UBDRS), was developed by the authors to assess motor, behavioral, and functional capability in JNCL. Children with verified JNCL were evaluated independently by three neurologists. Intraclass correlation coefficients (ICCs) were used to estimate the interrater reliability for total scores in each domain. Interrater reliability for scale items was assessed with weighted kappa statistics. Thirty-one children with confirmed JNCL (10 boys, 21 girls) were evaluated. The mean age at symptom onset was 6.1 +/- 1.6 years, and the mean duration of illness was 9.0 +/- 4.4 years. The ICCs for the domains were as follows: motor = 0.83, behavioral = 0.68, and functional capability = 0.85. The Unified Batten Disease Rating Scale (UBDRS) is a reliable instrument that effectively tests for neurologic function in blind and demented patients. In its current form, the UBDRS is useful for monitoring the diverse clinical findings seen in Batten disease.Neurology 08/2005; 65(2):275-9. DOI:10.1212/01.wnl.0000169019.41332.8a · 8.30 Impact Factor