Journal of Inherited Metabolic Disease

, Volume 30, Issue 1, pp 39–46 | Cite as

Increased lipolysis in LCHAD deficiency

  • M. U. Halldin
  • A. Forslund
  • U. von Döbeln
  • C. Eklund
  • J. Gustafsson
Original Article


An increasing number of fatty acid oxidation defects are being detected owing to diagnostic improvements and a greater awareness among clinicians. The metabolic block leads to energy disruption, fatty infiltration, and toxic effects on organ functions exerted by β-oxidation metabolites. This investigation was undertaken to assess the influence of long-chain 3-hydroxyacyl-CoA dehydrogenase (LCHAD) deficiency on lipolysis and energy turnover. We addressed the question whether the lipolysis and glucose production rates would be altered in the fasting state in a child with this disease. Lipolysis, glucose production and resting energy expenditure (REE) were studied in a 17-month-old girl with LCHAD deficiency and her healthy twin sister. Lipolysis and glucose production were determined after a 4–6 h fast by constant-rate infusion of [1,1,2,3,3-2H5]glycerol and [6,6-2H2]glucose and analysis by gas chromatography–mass spectrometry. REE was estimated by indirect calorimetry. The affected girl showed 50% higher lipolysis than did her sister, whereas the glucose production rates were similar. Plasma levels of dicarboxylic acids of 6–12 carbon atoms chain length, 3-hydroxy fatty acids of 6–18 carbon atoms chain length, total free fatty acids, and acylcarnitines were increased in the patient, as was REE. Since glucose production rates and plasma glucose levels were similar in the two girls, the increased lipolysis observed in the patient probably represents a compensatory mechanism for energy generation. This is achieved at the price of an augmented risk for fatty acid infiltration and toxic effects of β-oxidation intermediates. This highlights the importance of avoiding fasting in these patients.


Carnitine Dicarboxylic Acid Glucose Production Rest Energy Expenditure Free Carnitine 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.



growth hormone


long-chain 3-hydroxyacyl-CoA dehydrogenase

MCT fat

medium-chain triacylglycerols


nonesterified fatty acids


resting energy expenditure


standard deviation score




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Copyright information

© SSIEM and Springer 2006

Authors and Affiliations

  • M. U. Halldin
    • 1
  • A. Forslund
    • 1
  • U. von Döbeln
    • 2
  • C. Eklund
    • 1
  • J. Gustafsson
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Women’s and Children’s HealthUniversity Children’s HospitalUppsalaSweden
  2. 2.Centre for Inherited Metabolic DiseasesKarolinska University HospitalHuddingeSweden

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