A Cause of Permanent Ketosis: GLUT-1 Deficiency
GLUT-1-deficiency syndrome (GLUT1-DS; OMIM 606777) is a treatable metabolic disorder caused by a mutation of SLC2A1 gene. The functional deficiency of the GLUT1 protein leads to an impaired glucose transport into the brain, resulting in neurologic disorders.
We report on a 6-month-old boy with preprandial malaises who was treated monthly by a sorcerer because of a permanent acetonemic odor. He subsequently developed pharmaco-resistant seizures with microcephaly and motor abnormalities. Metabolic explorations were unremarkable except for a fasting glucose test which revealed an abnormal increase of blood ketone bodies. At the age of 35 months, GLUT1-DS was diagnosed based on hypoglycorrhachia with a decreased CSF to blood glucose ratio, and subsequent direct sequencing of the SLC2A1 gene revealed a de novo heterozygous mutation, c.349A>T (p.Lys117X) on exon 4. It was noteworthy that the patient adapted to the deficient cerebral glucose transport by permanent ketone body production since early life. Excessive ketone body production in this patient provided an alternative energy substrate for his brain. We suggest a cerebral metabolic adaptation with upregulation of monocarboxylic acid transporter proteins (MCT1) at the blood–brain barrier provoked by neuroglycopenia and allowing ketone body utilization by the brain. This case illustrates that GLUT1-DS should be considered in the differential diagnosis of permanent ketosis.