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Eur J Biochem. 2001 Nov;268(22):5851-6.

Elevated lysosomal pH in neuronal ceroid lipofuscinoses (NCLs).

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Helsinki Biomembrane & Biophysics Group, Institute of Biomedicine, Biomedicum Helsinki, Finland.


We report here the intracellular (pHi) and lysosomal pH in fibroblasts of six forms of neuronal ceroid lipofuscinoses (NCLs). Acid extrusion rate and pH(i) values were measured by the membrane-permeant acetoxymethyl ester of the indicator dye, 2',7'-bis(carboxyethyl)-5-(and-6)-carboxy-fluorescein (BCECF) and lysosomal pH by a spectrofluorometric assay utilizing a novel acidotropic probe, Lysosensor yellow/blue. Intracellular pH was normal in all NCLs. Elevated lysosomal pH was detected in all NCL forms except CLN2 and CLN8. Elevated pH most probably disturbs the catalytic activity of lysosomes and is one important factor in explaining accumulation of ceroid and lipofuscin-like autofluorescent lipopigments characteristic of NCLs. Using the novel spectrofluorometric assay introduced in this study provides a fast and repeatable technique to measure intralysosomal pH from cell suspensions.

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