Diagnosis of Pseudo-Arylsulfatase A Deficiency with Electrophoretic Techniques
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Deficient arylsulfatase A activity in man has long been associated with the neurodegenerative disease, metachromatic leukodystrophy. However, similar deficiency has been noted in clinically normal individuals, and is referred to as the pseudoarylsulfatase A deficiency condition. Although direct quantitative analysis of arylsulfatase A activity failed to differentiate between these two conditions, analysis of residual arylsulfatase A activity with either Cellogel electrophoresis or isoelectric focusing in polyacrylamide gels now has been shown to distinguish between them unequivocally. With both techniques, cultured fibroblasts from patients with pseudo-arylsulfatase A deficiency showed faint but clear bands of arylsulfatase A activity. Under identical conditions, fibroblasts from patients with metachromatic leukodystrophy showed no trace of activity. These methods can be adapted easily for general laboratory analysis in cases when results from quantitative arylsulfatase A assays are noninformative.
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