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Clin Chim Acta. 1999 Mar;281(1-2):169-76.

A novel assay for lysosomal pepstatin-insensitive proteinase and its application for the diagnosis of late-infantile neuronal ceroid lipofuscinosis.

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  • 1New York State Institute for Basic Research in Developmental Disabilities, Staten Island 10314, USA.


A highly sensitive assay for mammalian lysosomal pepstatin-insensitive proteinase (LPIP) is described using a synthetic peptide substrate coupled to aminotrifluoromethyl coumarin (AFC). LPIP is an endocarboxyl proteinase which has specific sequence requirements of Phe-Phe around the carboxyl terminal. This HPLC based assay can detect patients suffering from late-infantile neuronal ceroid lipofuscinosis (LINCL) and also heterozygote carriers in cultured lymphoid cells and skin fibroblasts. None of the patients analyzed had detectable enzyme activity confirming the defective gene product, while carriers had about 50% activity when compared with the normal controls. Neurological controls comprised of patients with other neurodegenerative disorders have LPIP activities similar to normal controls. LPIP activity is also detectable in amniocytes and chorionic villi. Thus the assay reported can also be used for prenatal diagnosis of LINCL.

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