Biomarkers of central nervous system inflammation in infantile and juvenile gangliosidoses

Jeanine R.Jarnes Utz, Thomas Crutcher, Joseph Schneider, Patrick Sorgen, Chester B. Whitley

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

33 Scopus citations


Background: The gangliosidoses (Tay-Sachs disease, Sandhoff disease, and GM1-gangliosidosis) are progressive neurodegenerative diseases caused by lysosomal enzyme activity deficiencies and consequent accumulation of gangliosides in the central nervous system (CNS). The infantile forms are distinguished from the juvenile forms by age of onset, rate of disease progression, and age of death. There are no approved treatments for the gangliosidoses. In search of potential biomarkers of disease, we quantified 188 analytes in CSF and serum from living human patients with longitudinal (serial) measurements. Notably, several associated with inflammation were elevated in the CSF of infantile gangliosidosis patients, and less so in more slowly progressing forms of juvenile gangliosidosis, but not in MPS disease. Thirteen CSF and two serum biomarker candidates were identified. Five candidate biomarkers were distinguished by persistent elevation in the CSF of patients with the severe infantile phenotype: ENA-78, MCP-1, MIP-1α, MIP-1β, and TNFR2. Correspondence of abnormal elevation with other variables of disease-i.e., severity of clinical phenotype, differentiation from changes in serum, and lack of abnormality in other neurodegenerative lysosomal diseases-identifies these analytes as biomarkers of neuropathology specific to the gangliosidosis diseases.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)274-280
Number of pages7
JournalMolecular Genetics and Metabolism
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 1 2015

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
The Lysosomal Disease Network ( U54NS065768 ) is a part of the National Institutes of Health (NIH) Rare Diseases Clinical Research Network (RDCRN) , supported through collaboration between the NIH Office of Rare Diseases Research (ORDR) at the National Center for Advancing Translational Science (NCATS) , the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS) , and the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK). The content is solely the responsibility of the authors and does not necessarily represent the official views of the National Institutes of Health.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2014 Elsevier Inc.


  • GM1-gangliosidosis
  • Ganglioside
  • Glycosphingolipid
  • Metabolomic
  • Sandhoff disease
  • Tay-Sachs disease


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