Journal of Inherited Metabolic Disease

, Volume 35, Issue 6, pp 1081–1091 | Cite as

Cell surface associated glycohydrolases in normal and Gaucher disease fibroblasts

  • Massimo Aureli
  • Rosaria Bassi
  • Nicoletta Loberto
  • Stefano Regis
  • Alessandro Prinetti
  • Vanna Chigorno
  • Johannes M. Aerts
  • Rolf G. Boot
  • Mirella Filocamo
  • Sandro Sonnino
Original Article


Gaucher disease (GD) is the most common lysosomal disorder and is caused by an inherited autosomal recessive deficiency in β-glucocerebrosidase. This enzyme, like other glycohydrolases involved in glycosphingolipid (GSL) metabolism, is present in both plasma membrane (PM) and intracellular fractions. We analyzed the activities of CBE-sensitive β-glucosidase (GBA1) and AMP-DNM-sensitive β-glucosidase (GBA2) in total cell lysates and PM of human fibroblast cell lines from control (normal) subjects and from patients with GD clinical types 1, 2, and 3. GBA1 activities in both total lysate and PM of GD fibroblasts were low, and their relative percentages were similar to those of control cells. In contrast, GBA2 activities were higher in GD cells than in control cells, and the degree of increase differed among the three GD types. The increase of GBA2 enzyme activity was correlated with increased expression of GBA2 protein as evaluated by QRT-PCR. Activities of β-galactosidase and β-hexosaminidase in PM were significantly higher for GD cells than for control cells and also showed significant differences among the three GD types, suggesting the occurrence of cross-talk among the enzymes involved in GSL metabolism. Our findings indicate that the profiles of glycohydrolase activities in PM may provide a valuable tool to refine the classification of GD into distinct clinical types.



This work was supported by grant PRIN (Italy) to S.S. and by grant “Ricerca Corrente” from the Italian Ministry of Health to M.F. The samples were obtained from the “Cell Line and DNA Biobank from Patients affected by Genetic Disease” (G. Gaslini Institute) - Telethon Genetic Biobank Network (Project No. GTB07001).

Details of funding for all research studies

This work was supported by grant PRIN (Italy) to SS and by grant “Ricerca Corrente” from the Italian Ministry of Health to MF.

The authors confirm their independence from the sponsors; the content of the article has not been influenced by the sponsors.

Conflict of interest



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Copyright information

© SSIEM and Springer 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  • Massimo Aureli
    • 1
  • Rosaria Bassi
    • 1
  • Nicoletta Loberto
    • 1
  • Stefano Regis
    • 2
  • Alessandro Prinetti
    • 1
  • Vanna Chigorno
    • 1
  • Johannes M. Aerts
    • 3
  • Rolf G. Boot
    • 3
  • Mirella Filocamo
    • 2
  • Sandro Sonnino
    • 1
    • 4
  1. 1.Department of Medical Chemistry, Biochemistry and BiotechnologyUniversity of MilanSegrateItaly
  2. 2.“Diagnosi Pre-Postnatale Malattie Metaboliche” LaboratoryG. Gaslini InstituteGenovaItaly
  3. 3.Department of Medical Biochemistry, Academic Medical CenterUniversity of AmsterdamAmsterdamthe Netherlands
  4. 4.Dipartimento di Chimica, Biochimica e Biotecnologie per la MedicinaUniversità degli Studi di MilanoSegrateItaly

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