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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Lactosyl ceramidosis: deficient activity of neutral beta-galactosidase in liver and cultivated fibroblasts?

Neutral beta-galactosidase was partially purified from liver of normal controls, a patient with Niemann-Pick disease type A and the previously described patient with lactosyl ceramidosis using Concanavalin A-Sepharose adsorption and Sephadex G-100 gel filtration. The partially purified fractions were essentially free of galactosyl ceramide beta-galactosidase and GM1 beta-galactosidase activities. The normal and Niemann-Pick fractions were found to hydrolyze lactosyl ceramide, in the presence of sodium taurodeoxycholate, at a pH optimum of 5.6 as well as aryl beta-galactosides and aryl beta-glucosides at pH 6. 2. The corresponding fraction from the lactosyl ceramidosis liver contained only 1--4% of the normal activity towards artificial substrates and lactosyl ceramide. Cross-reacting material identical to the normal was demonstrated in this fraction with antiserum raised against purified neutral beta-galactosidase, but no activity was observed in the precipitin line when stained with naphthol AS-LC-beta-galactoside or naphthol AS-LC-beta-glucoside. A similar deficiency of neutral beta-galactosidase activity was demonstrated in cultivated fibroblasts of the patient with lactosyl ceramidosis. Following adsorption on Concanavalin A-Sepharose and anti-GM1 beta-galactosidase antibody-Sepharose conjugates and chromatography on DEAE cellulose, fibroblast lysates from the patient exhibited 3% of normal activity towards 4-methyl-umbelliferyl beta-glucoside at pH 6.2 and 12% of normal activity towards lactosyl ceramide at pH 5. 6. These data suggest that neutral beta-galactosidase may have an in vivo role in the cleavage of lactosyl ceramide and that a deficiency of this activity may be related to the lactosyl ceramide accumulation observed in the patient with lactosyl ceramidosis.[1]


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