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Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 1980 Jun;77(6):3715-9.

Inborn errors of molybdenum metabolism: combined deficiencies of sulfite oxidase and xanthine dehydrogenase in a patient lacking the molybdenum cofactor.


A patient suffering from a combined deficiency of sulfite oxidase (sulfite dehydrogenase; sulfite:ferricytochrome c oxidoreductase, EC and xanthine dehydrogenase (xanthine:NAD+ oxidoreductase, EC is described. The patient displays severe neurological abnormalities, dislocated ocular lenses, and mental retardation. Urinary excretion of sulfite, thiosulfate, S-sulfocysteine, taurine, hypoxanthine, and xanthine is increased in this individual, while sulfate and urate levels are drastically reduced. The metabolic defect responsible for loss of both enzyme activities appears to be at the level of the molybdenum cofactor common to the two enzymes. Immunological examination of a biopsy sample of liver tissue revealed the presence of the xanthine dehydrogenase protein in near normal amounts. Sulfite oxidase apoprotein was not detected by a variety of immunological techniques. The plasma molybdenum concentration was normal; however, hepatic content of molybdenum and the storage pool of active molybdenum cofactor present in normal livers were below the limits of detection. Fibroblasts cultured from this patient failed to express sulfite oxidase protein or activity, whereas those from the parents and healthy brother of the patient expressed normal levels of this enzyme.

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