Biochemical Genetics

, Volume 20, Issue 1–2, pp 17–28 | Cite as

Biochemical evidence for diverse etiologies in biotin-responsive multiple carboxylase deficiency

  • Seymour Packman
  • Nancy M. Caswell
  • Herman Baker


Biotin-responsive multiple carboxylase deficiency can be categorized by clinical criteria into a neonatal-onset disorder and a distinct syndrome of infantile onset. Pedigrees in each instance are consistent with autosomal recessive inheritance. For a neonatal-onset proband, the sensitivity to relative biotin deprivation and the rapid clinical response to biotin supplementation are reflected by in vitro studies. Specific activities of biotin-dependent pyruvate carboxylase, propionyl CoA carboxylase, and 3-methylcrotonyl CoA carboxylase are 0.8 to 16% of mean control values after growth of fibroblasts in intermediate and very low biotin concentrations. Following relative biotin depletion, pyruvate carboxylase activity returns to normal after only 14 hr of growth in biotin-supplemented medium. In contrast, carboxylase activities in fibroblasts of an infantile-onset proband remain normal at very low biotin concentrations, even when avidin is added to the growth medium. The clinical heterogeneity, taken together with the distinct responses of cultured skin fibroblasts to biotin deprivation in vitro, probably reflect fundamentally different etiologies for the two categories of biotin-responsive multiple carboxylase deficiency.

Key words

biotin avidin pyruvate carboxylase propionyl CoA carboxylase 3-methylcrotonyl CoA carboxylase 


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Copyright information

© Plenum Publishing Corporation 1982

Authors and Affiliations

  • Seymour Packman
    • 1
  • Nancy M. Caswell
    • 1
  • Herman Baker
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of Pediatrics, Division of GeneticsUniversity of CaliforniaSan Francisco
  2. 2.Departments of Medicine and Preventive MedicineNew Jersey Medical SchoolEast Orange

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