Unrecognized High Occurrence of Genetically Confirmed Hereditary Carnitine Palmitoyltransferase II Deficiency in an Austrian Family Points to the Ongoing Underdiagnosis of the Disease

Front Genet. 2019 May 22;10:497. doi: 10.3389/fgene.2019.00497. eCollection 2019.


Adult muscle carnitine palmitoyltransferase (CPT) II deficiency is a rare autosomal recessive disorder of long-chain fatty acid metabolism. It is typically associated with recurrent episodes of exercise-induced rhabdomyolysis and myoglobinuria, in most cases caused by a c.338C > T mutation in the CPT2 gene. Here we present the pedigree of one of the largest family studies of CPT II deficiency caused by the c.338C > T mutation, documented so far. The pedigree comprises 24 blood relatives of the index patient, a 32 year old female with genetically proven CPT II deficiency. In total, the mutation was detected in 20 family members, among them five homozygotes and 15 heterozygotes. Among all homozygotes, first symptoms of CPT II deficiency occurred during childhood. Additionally, two already deceased relatives of the index patient were carriers of at least one copy of the genetic variant, revealing a remarkably high prevalence of the c.338C > T mutation within the tested family. Beside the index patient, only one individual had been diagnosed with CPT II deficiency prior to this study and three cases of CPT II deficiency were newly detected by this family study, pointing to a general underdiagnosis of the disease. Therefore, this study emphasizes the need to raise awareness of CPT II deficiency for correct diagnosis and accurate management of the disease.

Keywords: carnitine palmitoyltransferase II deficiency; family study; mutation; pedigree; underdiagnosis.