Biochemical correlates of neuropsychiatric illness in maple syrup urine disease

The Journal of clinical investigation (Impact Factor: 13.22). 03/2013; 123(4). DOI: 10.1172/JCI67217
Source: PubMed


Maple syrup urine disease (MSUD) is an inherited disorder of branched chain amino acid metabolism presenting with neonatal encephalopathy, episodic metabolic decompensation, and chronic amino acid imbalances. Dietary management enables survival and reduces risk of acute crises. Liver transplantation has emerged as an effective way to eliminate acute decompensation risk. Psychiatric illness is a reported MSUD complication, but has not been well characterized and remains poorly understood. We report the prevalence and characteristics of neuropsychiatric problems among 37 classical MSUD patients (ages 5-35 years, 26 on dietary therapy, 11 after liver transplantation) and explore their underlying mechanisms. Compared with 26 age-matched controls, MSUD patients were at higher risk for disorders of cognition, attention, and mood. Using quantitative proton magnetic resonance spectroscopy, we found lower brain glutamate, N-acetylaspartate (NAA), and creatine concentrations in MSUD patients, which correlated with specific neuropsychiatric outcomes. Asymptomatic neonatal course and stringent longitudinal biochemical control proved fundamental to optimizing long-term mental health. Neuropsychiatric morbidity and neurochemistry were similar among transplanted and nontransplanted MSUD patients. In conclusion, amino acid dysregulation results in aberrant neural networks with neurochemical deficiencies that persist after transplant and correlate with neuropsychiatric morbidities. These findings may provide insight into general mechanisms of psychiatric illness.

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Available from: Emilie R Muelly, Jun 09, 2014
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    • "Sign. lower score for adaptive functioning • Risk factor assessment: Sign positive correlation between IQ and adaptive functioning • Risk factor assessment: No sign. correlation between adaptive test scores and age at diagnosis, number of preceding metabolic crises, number of hospitalizations, age at transplantation Muelly et al., 2013 "
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    ABSTRACT: Background In recent decades, considerable progress in diagnosis and treatment of patients with intoxication-type inborn errors of metabolism (IT-IEM) such as urea cycle disorders (UCD), organic acidurias (OA), maple syrup urine disease (MSUD), or tyrosinemia type 1 (TYR 1) has resulted in a growing group of long-term survivors. However, IT-IEM still require intense patient and caregiver effort in terms of strict dietetic and pharmacological treatment, and the threat of metabolic crises is always present. Furthermore, crises can affect the central nervous system (CNS), leading to cognitive, behavioural and psychiatric sequelae. Consequently, the well-being of the patients warrants consideration from both a medical and a psychosocial viewpoint by assessing health-related quality of life (HrQoL), psychological adjustment, and adaptive functioning. To date, an overview of findings on these topics for IT-IEM is lacking. We therefore aimed to systematically review the research on HrQoL, psychological adjustment, and adaptive functioning in patients with IT-IEM.Methods Relevant databases were searched with predefined keywords. Study selection was conducted in two steps based on predefined criteria. Two independent reviewers completed the selection and data extraction.ResultsEleven articles met the inclusion criteria. Studies were of varying methodological quality and used different assessment measures. Findings on HrQoL were inconsistent, with some showing lower and others showing higher or equal HrQoL for IT-IEM patients compared to norms. Findings on psychological adjustment and adaptive functioning were more consistent, showing mostly either no difference or worse adjustment of IT-IEM patients compared to norms. Single medical risk factors for HrQoL, psychological adjustment, or adaptive functioning have been addressed, while psychosocial risk factors have not been addressed.Conclusion Data on HrQoL, psychological adjustment, and adaptive functioning for IT-IEM are sparse. Studies are inconsistent in their methodological approaches, assessment instruments and norm populations. A disease-specific standard assessment procedure for HrQoL is not available. Psychosocial risk factors for HrQoL, psychological adjustment, or adaptive functioning have not been investigated. Considering psychosocial variables and their corresponding risk factors for IT-IEM would allow evaluation of outcomes and treatments as well as the planning of effective social and psychological interventions to enhance the patients¿ HrQoL.
    Full-text · Article · Oct 2014 · Orphanet Journal of Rare Diseases
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    ABSTRACT: Liver transplantation appears to be quite beneficial for treatment of maple syrup urine disease (MSUD, an inherited disorder of branched chain amino acid metabolism); however, there is a limited availability of donor livers worldwide and the first year costs of liver transplants are quite high. Recent studies have suggested that intact adipose tissue, already widely used in reconstructive surgery, may have an underappreciated high capacity for branched chain amino acid (BCAA) metabolism. Here we examined the potential for adipose tissue transplant to lower circulating BCAAs in two models of defective BCAA metabolism, BCATm and PP2Cm [branched chain keto acid dehydrogenase complex (BCKDC) phosphatase] knockout (KO) mice. After 1-2g fat transplant, BCATm and PP2Cm KO mice gained or maintained body weight 3weeks after surgery and consumed similar or more food/BCAAs the week before phlebotomy. Transplant of fat into the abdominal cavity led to a sterile inflammatory response and nonviable transplanted tissue. However when 1-2g of fat was transplanted subcutaneously into the back, either as small (0.1-0.3g) or finely minced pieces introduced with an 18-ga. needle, plasma BCAAs decreased compared to Sham operated mice. In two studies on BCATm KO mice and one study on PP2Cm KO mice, fat transplant led to 52-81% reductions in plasma BCAAs compared to baseline plasma BCAA concentrations of untreated WT type siblings. In PP2Cm KO mice, individual BCAAs in plasma were also significantly reduced by fat transplant, as were the alloisoleucine/Phe ratios. Therefore, subcutaneous fat transplantation may have merit as an adjunct to dietary treatment of MSUD. Additional studies are needed to further refine this approach.
    Full-text · Article · May 2013 · Molecular Genetics and Metabolism
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    ABSTRACT: Maple syrup urine disease (MSUD) is an inborn metabolism error caused by a deficiency of branched-chain α-keto acid dehydrogenase complex activity. This blockage leads to an accumulation of the branched-chain amino acids (BCAA) leucine, isoleucine, and valine, as well as their corresponding α-keto and α-hydroxy acids. Previous reports suggest that MSUD patients are at high risk for chronic neuropsychiatric problems. Therefore, in this study, we assessed variables that suggest depressive-like symptoms (anhedonia as measured by sucrose intake, immobility during the forced swimming test and body and adrenal gland weight) in rats submitted to chronic administration of BCAA during development. Furthermore, we determined if these parameters were sensitive to imipramine and N-acetylcysteine/deferoxamine (NAC/DFX). Our results demonstrated that animals subjected to chronic administration of branched-chain amino acids showed a decrease in sucrose intake without significant changes in body weight. We also observed an increase in adrenal gland weight and immobility time during the forced swimming test. However, treatment with imipramine and NAC/DFX reversed these changes in the behavioral tasks. In conclusion, this study demonstrates a link between MSUD and depression in rats. Moreover, this investigation reveals that the antidepressant action of NAC/DFX and imipramine might be associated with their capability to maintain pro-/anti-oxidative homeostasis.
    No preview · Article · Nov 2013
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