Clinical, biochemical and molecular investigation of adult-onset glutaric acidemia type II: Characteristics in comparison with pediatric cases

Kenji Yamada*, Hironori Kobayashi, Ryosuke Bo, Tomoo Takahashi, Jamiyan Purevsuren, Yuki Hasegawa, Takeshi Taketani, Seiji Fukuda, Takuya Ohkubo, Takanori Yokota, Mutsufusa Watanabe, Taiji Tsunemi, Hidehiro Mizusawa, Hiroshi Takuma, Ayako Shioya, Akiko Ishii, Akira Tamaoka, Yosuke Shigematsu, Hideo Sugie, Seiji Yamaguchi

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

34 Scopus citations


Introduction: An increasing number of adult patients have been diagnosed with fatty acid β-oxidation disorders with the rising use of diagnostic technologies. In this study, clinical, biochemical, and molecular characteristics of 2 Japanese patients with adult-onset glutaric acidemia type II (GA2) were investigated and compared with those of pediatric cases. Methods: The patients were a 58-year-old male and a 31-year-old male. In both cases, episodes of myopathic symptoms, including myalgia, muscle weakness, and liver dysfunction of unknown cause, had been noted for the past several years. Muscle biopsy, urinary organic acid analysis (OA), acylcarnitine (AC) analysis in dried blood spots (DBS) and serum, immunoblotting, genetic analysis, and an in vitro probe acylcarnitine (IVP) assay were used for diagnosis and investigation. Results: In both cases, there was no obvious abnormality of AC in DBS or urinary OA, although there was a increase in medium- and long-chain ACs in serum; also, fat deposits were observed in the muscle biopsy. Immunoblotting and gene analysis revealed that both patients had GA2 due to a defect in electron transfer flavoprotein dehydrogenase (ETFDH). The IVP assay indicated no special abnormalities in either case. Conclusion: Late-onset GA2 is separated into the intermediate and myopathic forms. In the myopathic form, episodic muscular symptoms or liver dysfunction are primarily exhibited after later childhood. Muscle biopsy and serum (or plasma) AC analysis allow accurate diagnosis in contrast with other biochemical tests, such as analysis of AC in DBS, urinary OA, or the IVP assay, which show fewer abnormalities in the myopathic form compared to intermediate form.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)293-301
Number of pages9
JournalBrain and Development
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 1 2016


  • Adult onset
  • Immunoblotting
  • In vitro probe acylcarnitine assay
  • Multiple acyl-CoA dehydrogenase deficiency (glutaric acidemia type II)
  • Myopathy
  • Serum acylcarnitine

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Neurology
  • Developmental Neuroscience
  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health


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