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Biochem Biophys Res Commun. 2001 Jan 26;280(3):700-6.

Functional analysis of mutant human carnitine acylcarnitine translocases in yeast.

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Department of Clinical Chemistry, Academic Medical Centre, University of Amsterdam, 1100 DE Amsterdam, The Netherlands.


Long chain fatty acids are translocated as carnitine esters across the mitochondrial inner membrane by carnitine acylcarnitine translocase (CACT). We report functional studies on the mutant CACT proteins from a severe and a mild patient with CACT deficiency. CACT activities in fibroblasts of both patients were markedly deficient with some residual activity (<1%) in the milder patient. Palmitate oxidation activity in cells from the severe patient was less than 5% but in the milder patient approximately 27% residual activity was found. Sequencing of the CACT cDNAs revealed a c.241G>A (G81R) in the severe and a c.955insC mutation (C-terminal extension of 21 amino acids (CACT(+21aa)) in the milder patient. The effect of both mutations on the protein was studied in a sensitive expression system based on the ability of human CACT to functionally complement a CACT-deletion strain of yeast. Expression in this strain revealed significant residual activity for CACT(+21aa), while the CACT(G81R) was inactive.

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