Slow, continuous enzyme replacement via spinal CSF in dogs with the paediatric-onset neurodegenerative disease, MPS IIIA
MPS IIIA is an inherited neurodegenerative lysosomal storage disorder characterized by cognitive impairment, sleep-wake cycle disturbance, speech difficulties, eventual mental regression and early death. Neuropathological changes include accumulation of heparan sulfate and glycolipids, neuroinflammation and degeneration. Pre-clinical animal studies indicate that replacement of the deficient enzyme, sulfamidase, via intra-cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) injection is a clinically-relevant treatment approach, reducing neuropathological changes and improving symptoms. Given that there are several routes of administration of enzyme into the CSF (intrathecal lumbar, cisternal and ventricular), determining the effectiveness of each injection strategy is crucial in order to provide the best outcome for patients. We delivered recombinant human sulfamidase (rhSGSH) to a congenic mouse model of MPS IIIA via each of the three routes. Mice were euthanized 24h or one-week post-injection; the distribution of enzyme within the brain and spinal cord parenchyma was investigated, and the impact on primary substrate levels and other pathological lesions determined. Both ventricular and cisternal injection of rhSGSH enable enzyme delivery to brain and spinal cord regions, with the former mediating large, statistically significant decreases in substrate levels and reducing microglial activation. The single lumbar CSF infusion permitted more restricted enzyme delivery, with no reduction in substrate levels and little change in other disease-related lesions in brain tissue. While the ventricular route is the most invasive of the three methods, this strategy may enable the widest distribution of enzyme within the brain, and thus requires further exploration.