N-acetylglutamate synthase deficiency: Novel mutation associated with neonatal presentation and literature review of molecular and phenotypic spectra

Eiman H Al Kaabi, Ayman W El-Hattab
Molecular Genetics and Metabolism Reports 2016, 8: 94-8
The urea cycle is the main pathway for the disposal of excess nitrogen. Carbamoylphosphate synthetase 1 (CPS1), the first and rate-limiting enzyme of urea cycle, is activated by N-acetylglutamate (NAG), and thus N-acetylglutamate synthase (NAGS) is an essential part of the urea cycle. Although NAGS deficiency is the rarest urea cycle disorder, it is the only one that can be specifically and effectively treated by a drug, N-carbamylglutamate, a stable structural analogous of NAG that activates CPS1. Here we report an infant with NAGS deficiency who presented with neonatal hyperammonemia. She was found to have a novel homozygous splice-site mutation, c.1097-2A>T, in the NAGS gene. We describe the clinical course of this infant, who had rapid response to N-carbamylglutamate treatment. In addition, we reviewed the clinical and molecular spectra of previously reported individuals with NAGS deficiency, which presents in most cases with neonatal hyperammonemia, and in some cases the presentation is later, with a broad spectrum of ages and manifestations. With this broad later-onset phenotypic spectrum, maintaining a high index of suspicion is needed for the early diagnosis of this treatable disease.

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