Gaucher disease: The effects of phosphatidylserine on glucocerebrosidase from normal and Gaucher fibroblasts


Glucocerebroside β-glucosidase (glucocerebrosidase) activity was assayed from cultured fibroblasts of normal individuals, and patients with type 1 (non-neuropathic), type 2 (acute neuropathic), and type 3 (subacute neuropathic) form of Gaucher disease. Residual glucocerebrosidase activity of patients was 8.9 to 17.4% of normal controls, and there was no clear correlation between the level of residual enzyme activity and the different clinical subtypes of the disease. When membrane-bound glucocerebrosidase activity was assayed in the presence of crude brain lipid extracts or purified phosphatidylserine, enzyme from both the normal and type 1 Gaucher fibroblasts was stimulated dramatically (35–60% by crude extracts, 85–90% by phosphatidylserine). This stimulation was not observed with fibroblast glucocerebrosidase of an infantile type 2 and two juvenile type 3 Gaucher patients. The presence of inhibitors of glucocerebrosidase in these type 2 and type 3 Gaucher cells was not detected. Contrary to the mutant enzyme from these Gaucher fibroblasts, glucocerebrosidase from fibroblasts of two adult type 3 Gaucher patients with cerebral involvement was stimulated substantially (72–85%) by phosphatidylserine. When membrane-bound glucocerebrosidase from fibroblasts of the infantile type 2 and juvenile type 3 patients was solubilized with sodium cholate (1% w/v) and delipidated, the phospholipid stimulation of enzyme activity was restored. These findings suggest that considerable clinical and biochemical heterogeneity exists among patients with neuropathic Gaucher disease and that phosphatidylserine activation cannot be used as a reliable indicator in predicting future onset of neurodegeneration in Gaucher patients. The possibility of an aberrant binding of mutant glucocerebrosidase to the lysosomal membrane in juvenile type 3 form of Gaucher disease is discussed.

DOI: 10.1007/BF00291405

3 Figures and Tables

Cite this paper

@article{Choy1984GaucherDT, title={Gaucher disease: The effects of phosphatidylserine on glucocerebrosidase from normal and Gaucher fibroblasts}, author={Francis Y. M. Choy}, journal={Human Genetics}, year={1984}, volume={67}, pages={432-436} }