Hepatocyte gene therapy in a large animal: a neonatal bovine model of citrullinemia. (1/173)The development of gene-replacement therapy for inborn errors of metabolism has been hindered by the limited number of suitable large-animal models of these diseases and by inadequate methods of assessing the efficacy of treatment. Such methods should provide sensitive detection of expression in vivo and should be unaffected by concurrent pharmacologic and dietary regimens. We present the results of studies in a neonatal bovine model of citrullinemia, an inborn error of urea-cycle metabolism characterized by deficiency of argininosuccinate synthetase and consequent life-threatening hyperammonemia. Measurements of the flux of nitrogen from orally administered 15NH4 to [15N]urea were used to determine urea-cycle activity in vivo. In control animals, these isotopic measurements proved to be unaffected by pharmacologic treatments. Systemic administration of a first-generation E1-deleted adenoviral vector expressing human argininosuccinate synthetase resulted in transduction of hepatocytes and partial correction of the enzyme defect. The isotopic method showed significant restoration of urea synthesis. Moreover, the calves showed clinical improvement and normalization of plasma glutamine levels after treatment. The results show the clinical efficacy of treating a large-animal model of an inborn error of hepatocyte metabolism in conjunction with a method for sensitively measuring correction in vivo. These studies will be applicable to human trials of the treatment of this disorder and other related urea-cycle disorders. (+info)
Metabolic capacity for L-citrulline synthesis from ammonia in rat isolated colonocytes. (2/173)Ammonia is present at high concentration in the colon lumen and is considered a colon cancer suspect. Furthermore, ammonia usually eliminated by the liver in the ornithine cycle is considered highly toxic to cerebral function when present in excess in the blood plasma. Therefore, the metabolic pathways involved in ammonia metabolism in colonocytes were studied in the present study. Rat colonocytes were found equipped with low carbamoylphosphate synthase I activity, high ornithine carbamoyltransferase and arginase activities and low argininosuccinate synthase activity. High (10 and 50 mmol/l) NH4Cl concentrations but not low concentrations (1 and 5 mmol/l) were found able to increase respectively 3- and 10-fold the conversion of radioactive L-arginine to L-citrulline. In contrast, very low capacity for L-citrulline conversion to L-arginine is found in colonocytes. It is concluded that an incomplete ornithine cycle is operative in colonocytes which results in ammonia stimulated L-citrulline production. The contribution of this metabolic pathway in relation to ammonia detoxication by colonocytes is discussed. (+info)
An adult-onset case of argininosuccinate synthetase deficiency presenting with atypical citrullinemia. (3/173)A 52-year-old heavy drinker presented with repeated episodes of disturbance of consciousness and an increase in serum ammonia level, triggered by excessive alcohol intake. He was diagnosed as having adult-onset citrullinemia with deficiency of hepatic argininosuccinate synthetase (ASS) activity. Cranial magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) showed high-intensity lesions in the central pons and the bilateral middle cerebellar peduncles on T2-weighted images. Although almost all cases of adult-onset citrullinemia have been reported to be enzymologically classified as type II, the serum amino acid pattern and serum level of human pancreatic secretory trypsin inhibitor (hPSTI) were atypical for type II in the present case. (+info)
Induction of argininosuccinate synthetase in rat brain glial cells after striatal microinjection of immunostimulants. (4/173)The enzyme argininosuccinate synthetase (ASS) initiates the metabolic pathway leading from L-citrulline to L-arginine, the only physiological substrate of all isoforms of nitric oxide synthases. The presence of ASS in glial cells in vivo was investigated by immunohistochemical methods in a model of rat brain inflammation. Phosphate-buffered saline or a mixture of bacterial lipopolysaccharide and interferon-gamma was injected into the left striatum, and animals were killed 24 hours later. Ipsilateral and contralateral sides of brain sections were incubated with an antiserum against ASS or antibodies against cell-specific markers. In the three areas examined, striatum, corpus callosum, and cortex, a strong induction of ASS immunoreactivity was observed in glial cells after injection of immunostimulants. A detailed quantitative analysis of double-stained sections revealed that ASS was almost exclusively expressed in reactive, ED1-positive microglial cells/brain macrophages in immunostimulant- or sham-injected ipsilateral sides of the sections. Furthermore, ASS/ED1 costaining was observed in perivascular cells. Colocalization of ASS with astroglial marker glial fibrillary acidic protein was given only occasionally after immunostimulation. ASS-positive neurons were detected in control and experimental animals; staining intensity was comparable in both cases. The results suggest that neurons express ASS constitutively, whereas the enzyme is induced in glial cells in response to proinflammatory stimuli. This finding is the first demonstration of an induction of a pathway auxiliary to generation of nitric oxide in brain in response to immunostimulants and provides new insight into neural arginine metabolism. (+info)
Using genomic information to investigate the function of ThiI, an enzyme shared between thiamin and 4-thiouridine biosynthesis. (5/173)The gene thiI encodes a protein (ThiI) that plays a role in the transfer of sulfur from cysteine to both thiamin and 4-thiouridine, but the reaction catalyzed by ThiI remains undetermined. Based upon sequence alignments, ThiI shares a unique "P-loop" motif with the PPi synthetase family, four enzymes that catalyze adenylation and subsequent substitution of carbonyl oxygens. To test whether or not this motif is critical for ThiI function, the Asp in the motif was converted to Ala (D189A), and a screen for in vivo 4-thiouridine production revealed the altered enzyme to be inactive. Further scrutiny of sequence data and the crystal structures of two members of the PPi synthetase family implicated Lys321 in the proposed adenylation function of ThiI, and the critical nature of Lys321 has been demonstrated by site-directed mutagenesis and genetic screening. Our results, then, indicate that ThiI catalyzes the adenylation of a substrate at the expense of ATP, a narrowing of possible reactions that provides a strong new basis for deducing the early steps in the transfer of sulfur from cysteine to both thiamin and 4-thiouridine. (+info)
Augmentation of urea-synthetic capacity by inhibition of nitric oxide synthesis in butyrate-induced differentiated human hepatocytes. (6/173)We have recently developed an in vitro differentiation model of immortalized non-transformed human hepatocytes using butyrate, and observed the induction of inducible NO synthase (iNOS). In this study, we analyzed the effect of NO on the urea-synthetic capacity of these cells. The inhibition of iNOS during butyrate treatment significantly increased the urea-synthetic capacity as compared to that of butyrate treatment alone, possibly through the further induction of ornithine transcarbamylase expression. Therefore, the inhibition of NO production might be useful for obtaining more differentiated hepatocytes in the process of in vitro induction of hepatocyte-specific differentiation. (+info)
Regulation of diaphragmatic nitric oxide synthase expression during hypobaric hypoxia. (7/173)Nitric oxide (NO) is normally synthesized inside skeletal muscle fibers by both endothelial (eNOS) and neuronal (nNOS) nitric oxide synthases. In this study, we evaluated the influence of hypobaric hypoxia on the expression of NOS isoforms, argininosuccinate synthetase (AS), argininosuccinate lyase (AL), and manganese superoxide dismutase (Mn SOD) in the ventilatory muscles. Rats were exposed to hypobaric hypoxia ( approximately 95 mmHg) from birth for 60 days or 9-11 mo. Age-matched control groups of rats also were examined. Sixty days of hypoxia elicited approximately two- and ninefold increases in diaphragmatic eNOS and nNOS protein expression (evaluated by immunoblotting), respectively, and about a 50% rise in diaphragmatic NOS activity. In contrast, NOS activity and the expression of these proteins declined significantly in response to 9 mo of hypoxia. Hypoxia elicited no significant alterations in AS, AL and Mn SOD protein expression. Moreover, the inducible NOS (iNOS) was not detected in normoxic and hypoxic diaphragmatic samples. We conclude that diaphragmatic NOS expression and activity undergo significant adaptations to hypobaric hypoxia and that iNOS does not participate in this response. (+info)
Mutation analysis of Korean patients with citrullinemia. (8/173)Citrullinemia is an autosomal recessive disease due to the mutations in the argininosuccinate synthetase (ASS) gene. Mutation analysis was performed on three Korean patients with citrullinemia. All of the three patients had the splicing mutation previously reported as IVS6-2A>G mutation. Two had Gly324Ser mutation and the other patient had a 67-bp insertion mutation in exon 15. The IVS6-2A>G mutation was reported to be found frequently in Japanese patients with citrullinemia, but Caucasian patients showed the extreme mutational heterogeneity. Although a limited number of Korean patients were studied, the IVS6-2A>G mutation appears to be one of the most frequent mutant alleles in Korean patients with citrullinemia. The Gly324Ser mutation identified in two patients also suggests the possible high frequency of this mutation in Korean patients as well. (+info)
Symptoms of argininosuccinic aciduria typically appear during infancy or early childhood and may include seizures, developmental delays, intellectual disability, vision loss, and poor muscle tone. Treatment for this condition involves a strict diet that limits the intake of certain amino acids, as well as medication to manage seizures and other symptoms. In some cases, liver transplantation may be necessary.
Argininosuccinic aciduria is diagnosed through a combination of clinical evaluation, laboratory tests, and genetic analysis. Treatment is usually coordinated by a multidisciplinary team of healthcare professionals, including pediatricians, neurologists, metabolism specialists, dietitians, and psychologists. With appropriate treatment and management, many individuals with argininosuccinic aciduria are able to lead active and fulfilling lives.
Overall, argininosuccinic aciduria is a rare and complex genetic disorder that requires careful management and monitoring to prevent complications and improve quality of life for affected individuals.
Without enough citrulline synthase, citrulline builds up in the blood and urine, leading to a range of symptoms including seizures, developmental delays, and abnormal brain function. Citrullinemia can be diagnosed through a combination of blood tests and genetic analysis, and is typically treated with a diet that restricts protein intake and includes supplements to support the urea cycle. In some cases, medication or a liver transplant may also be necessary.
The prognosis for citrullinemia varies depending on the severity of the condition and the effectiveness of treatment. Some individuals with mild forms of the disorder may lead relatively normal lives with proper management, while those with more severe forms may experience significant cognitive and physical impairments. Early diagnosis and intervention are key to improving outcomes for individuals with citrullinemia.
Here are some key points to remember about citrullinemia:
* It is a rare genetic disorder that affects the urea cycle, leading to a build-up of citrulline in the blood and urine.
* Symptoms can include seizures, developmental delays, and abnormal brain function.
* Diagnosis is typically made through a combination of blood tests and genetic analysis.
* Treatment typically involves a protein-restricted diet and supplements to support the urea cycle.
* The prognosis varies depending on the severity of the condition and the effectiveness of treatment.
Overall, citrullinemia is a rare and complex disorder that requires careful management to prevent complications and improve outcomes for individuals affected by the condition.