Chronic liver disease and impaired hepatic glycogen metabolism in argininosuccinate lyase deficiency.

Journal Article (Journal Article;Multicenter Study)

BACKGROUNDLiver disease in urea cycle disorders (UCDs) ranges from hepatomegaly and chronic hepatocellular injury to cirrhosis and end-stage liver disease. However, the prevalence and underlying mechanisms are unclear.METHODSWe estimated the prevalence of chronic hepatocellular injury in UCDs using data from a multicenter, longitudinal, natural history study. We also used ultrasound with shear wave elastography and FibroTest to evaluate liver stiffness and markers of fibrosis in individuals with argininosuccinate lyase deficiency (ASLD), a disorder with high prevalence of elevated serum alanine aminotransferase (ALT). To understand the human observations, we evaluated the hepatic phenotype of the AslNeo/Neo mouse model of ASLD.RESULTSWe demonstrate a high prevalence of elevated ALT in ASLD (37%). Hyperammonemia and use of nitrogen-scavenging agents, 2 markers of disease severity, were significantly (P < 0.001 and P = 0.001, respectively) associated with elevated ALT in ASLD. In addition, ultrasound with shear wave elastography and FibroTest revealed increased echogenicity and liver stiffness, even in individuals with ASLD and normal aminotransferases. The AslNeo/Neo mice mimic the human disorder with hepatomegaly, elevated aminotransferases, and excessive hepatic glycogen noted before death (3-5 weeks of age). This excessive hepatic glycogen is associated with impaired hepatic glycogenolysis and decreased glycogen phosphorylase and is rescued with helper-dependent adenovirus expressing Asl using a liver-specific (ApoE) promoter.CONCLUSIONOur results link urea cycle dysfunction and impaired hepatic glucose metabolism and identify a mouse model of liver disease in the setting of urea cycle dysfunction.TRIAL REGISTRATIONThis study has been registered at (NCT03721367, NCT00237315).FUNDINGFunding was provided by NIH, Burroughs Wellcome Fund, NUCDF, Genzyme/ACMG Foundation, and CPRIT.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Burrage, LC; Madan, S; Li, X; Ali, S; Mohammad, M; Stroup, BM; Jiang, M-M; Cela, R; Bertin, T; Jin, Z; Dai, J; Guffey, D; Finegold, M; Members of the Urea Cycle Disorders Consortium (UCDC), ; Nagamani, S; Minard, CG; Marini, J; Masand, P; Schady, D; Shneider, BL; Leung, DH; Bali, D; Lee, B

Published Date

  • February 27, 2020

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 5 / 4

PubMed ID

  • 31990680

Pubmed Central ID

  • PMC7101134

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 2379-3708

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1172/jci.insight.132342


  • eng

Conference Location

  • United States