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Cell Biochem Funct. 2008 Oct;26(7):741-6. doi: 10.1002/cbf.1465.

Reye's and Reye's-like syndromes.

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  • 1Department of Medical and Surgical Sciences, Teaching of Clinical Virology in Post Doctoral Schools of Medicine, University of Turin, "Amedeo di Savoia" Hospital, Turin, Italy.


The review reports various questions about Reye's syndrome and Reye's-like syndromes. Although there is a significant decrease in the classic Reye's syndrome cases, because of the reduced employment of salicylates in children (salicylate seems to be the most important inducing factor of the syndrome in paediatric subjects affected by viral infection), the problem is still of interest considering the presence of different Reye's-like forms. All these pathological situations are associated with various aetiologic or predisposing causes that are examined in the text. Particular attention is placed on metabolic disorders, especially of fatty acid metabolism, and also of one amino acid. In fact, a latent form can also be the basis of possible biochemical disturbances induced by various exogenous factors such as viral infections, particularly of the respiratory tract (more rarely of bacterial aetiology), or produced by microbial toxins, or by chemical substances, including some therapeutic drugs. A full discussion of biochemical mechanisms of salicylate-induced Reye's syndrome is reported. Finally a possible diagnostic differentiation from classic Reye's syndrome and Reye's-like syndromes plus therapeutic prospects are briefly examined.

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