Pompe disease is an autosomal recessive lysosomal storage disorder (LSD) caused by deficiency of lysosomal acid alpha-glucosidase (GAA). The result of the GAA deficiency is a ubiquitous lysosomal and non-lysosomal accumulation of glycogen. The most affected tissues are heart, skeletal muscle, liver, and the nervous system. Replacement therapy with the currently approved enzyme relies on M6P-mediated endocytosis. However, therapeutic outcomes still leave room for improvement, especially with regard to skeletal muscles. We tested the uptake, activity, and effect on glucose metabolism of a non-phosphorylated recombinant human GAA produced in moss (moss-GAA). Three variants of moss-GAA differing in glycosylation pattern have been analyzed: two with terminal mannose residues in a paucimannosidic (Man3) or high-mannose (Man 5) configuration and one with terminal N-acetylglucosamine residues (GnGn). Compared to alglucosidase alfa the moss-GAA GnGn variant showed increased uptake in differentiated myotubes. Moreover, incubation of immortalized muscle cells of Gaa-/- mice with moss-GAA GnGn led to similarly efficient clearance of accumulated glycogen as with alglucosidase alfa. These initial data suggest that M6P-residues might not always be necessary for the cellular uptake in enzyme replacement therapy (ERT) and indicate the potential of moss-GAA GnGn as novel alternative drug for targeting skeletal muscle in Pompe patients.
Keywords: Pompe disease; enzyme replacement therapy; glycogen storage disease type II; moss-GAA.