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Biochem Biophys Res Commun. 1992 May 29;185(1):16-21.

31-P NMR characterization of the metabolic anomalies associated with the lack of glycogen phosphorylase activity in human forearm muscle.

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Centre de Résonance Magnétique Biologique et Médicale, URA CNRS no 1186, Faculté de Médecine de Marseille, France.


Exercise-induced changes in phosphorus-containing metabolites and intracellular pH (pHi) have been studied in the finger flexor muscles of 3 patients with glycogen phosphorylase deficiency (McArdle's disease) in comparison to 14 healthy volunteers. At rest, no difference was observed for PCr/Pi ratio and pHi while patients exhibited a higher PCr/ATP ratio (5.91 +/- 0.98 vs 4.02 +/- 0.6). At end-of-exercise, PCr/Pi was abnormally low (0.51 +/- 0.19 vs 1.64 +/- 0.37) whereas no acidosis was observed. The slow recovery of PCr/Pi ratio indicates an impairment of oxidative capacity accompanying the defect in the glycogenolytic pathway. The failure to observe a transient Pi disappearance at the onset of recovery (an index of glycogen phosphorylase activity) can be used in conjunction with the lack of exercise acidosis as a diagnostic index of McArdle's disease.

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