Journal of Inherited Metabolic Disease

, Volume 20, Issue 2, pp 186–192

Clinical heterogeneity and molecular mechanisms in inborn muscle AMP deaminase deficiency

  • M. Gross

DOI: 10.1023/A:1005352605421

Cite this article as:
Gross, M. J Inherit Metab Dis (1997) 20: 186. doi:10.1023/A:1005352605421


Lack of the muscle-specific isoform of AMP deaminase (myoadenylate deaminase deficiency) can cause a metabolic myopathy, with exercise-induced muscle symptoms such as early fatigue, cramps and/or myalgia. It is the most common muscle enzyme defect in man, found in about 2-3% of all muscle biopsies. The genetic basis of the inherited defect is the nonsense mutation C34-T in the AMPD1 gene encoding myoadenylate deaminase. The mutation results in a premature stop of the enzyme synthesis. In a healthy German population, the frequency of the mutant allele was 0.1, and 1 % of this population is expected to be homozygous for the mutation. In people with muscle symptoms, the allele frequency was significantly higher (0.145). The correlation between allele frequency and muscle symptoms underscores the clinical significance of this defect. However, the vast majority of homozygous subjects do not develop a metabolic myopathy. This clinical heterogeneity may be due to molecular genetic factors such as alternative splicing of the exon harbouring the mutation, or due to metabolic conditions such as pathways compensating for the defect. The real basis for the high percentage of asymptomatic homozygous subjects remains to be revealed.

Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 1997

Authors and Affiliations

  • M. Gross
    • 1
  1. 1.Medizinische Poliklinik, Klinikum InnenstadtLudwig-Maximilians-Universität MünchenMünchenGermany