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Homozygosity for a splice junction mutation in exon 8 of the gene encoding lysosomal acid lipase in a Spanish kindred with cholesterol ester storage disease (CESD)

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Deficiency of lysosomal acid lipase is expressed in two distinct recognizable phenotypes. Wolman disease represents the severe early onset form, whereas cholesterol ester storage disease is the more benign late onset type. Previous studies have indicated that compound heterozygosity consisting of a G → A mutation at the 3′ splice junction of exon 8 (E8SJM-allele) together with a null allele of the gene encoding lysosomal acid lipase leads to cholesterol ester storage disease. We have now observed homozygosity for the G → A splice junction mutation in a non-related Spanish kindred with the same disease. As expected, the residual activity of lysosomal acid lipase is higher in this case, suggesting that the E8SJM-allele is associated with low residual acid lipase activity. However, the phenotype of the homozygous propositus is more severe compared with the previously described case, indicating that no direct relationship exists between the genotype or residual LAL activity and the precise cholesterol or triglyceride levels in a given patient. Nevertheless, our findings provide convincing evidence that homozygosity for the E8SJM-allele causes cholesterol ester storage disease to at least the same extent as compound heterozygosity consisting of this allele and a null allele.

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This study was performed in accordance with the ethical standards laid down in the 1964 Declaration of Helsinki

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Muntoni, S., Wiebusch, H., Funke, H. et al. Homozygosity for a splice junction mutation in exon 8 of the gene encoding lysosomal acid lipase in a Spanish kindred with cholesterol ester storage disease (CESD). Hum Genet 95, 491–494 (1995).

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  • Lipase
  • Triglyceride
  • Lipase Activity
  • Null Allele
  • Splice Junction