Genetic, biochemical, and clinical spectrum of patients with mitochondrial trifunctional protein deficiency identified after the introduction of newborn screening in the Netherlands

J Inherit Metab Dis. 2022 Jul;45(4):804-818. doi: 10.1002/jimd.12502. Epub 2022 Apr 19.


Long-chain 3-hydroxyacyl-CoA dehydrogenase deficiency (LCHADD) is included in many newborn screening (NBS) programs. Acylcarnitine-based NBS for LCHADD not only identifies LCHADD, but also the other deficiencies of the mitochondrial trifunctional protein (MTP), a multi-enzyme complex involved in long-chain fatty acid β-oxidation. Besides LCHAD, MTP harbors two additional enzyme activities: long-chain enoyl-CoA hydratase (LCEH) and long-chain ketoacyl-CoA thiolase (LCKAT). Deficiency of one or more MTP activities causes generalized MTP deficiency (MTPD), LCHADD, LCEH deficiency (not yet reported), or LCKAT deficiency (LCKATD). To gain insight in the outcomes of MTP-deficient patients diagnosed after the introduction of NBS for LCHADD in the Netherlands, a retrospective evaluation of genetic, biochemical, and clinical characteristics of MTP-deficient patients, identified since 2007, was carried out. Thirteen patients were identified: seven with LCHADD, five with MTPD, and one with LCKATD. All LCHADD patients (one missed by NBS, clinical diagnosis) and one MTPD patient (clinical diagnosis) were alive. Four MTPD patients and one LCKATD patient developed cardiomyopathy and died within 1 month and 13 months of life, respectively. Surviving patients did not develop symptomatic hypoglycemia, but experienced reversible cardiomyopathy and rhabdomyolysis. Five LCHADD patients developed subclinical neuropathy and/or retinopathy. In conclusion, patient outcomes were highly variable, stressing the need for accurate classification of and discrimination between the MTP deficiencies to improve insight in the yield of NBS for LCHADD. NBS allowed the prevention of symptomatic hypoglycemia, but current treatment options failed to treat cardiomyopathy and prevent long-term complications. Moreover, milder patients, who might benefit from NBS, were missed due to normal acylcarnitine profiles.

Keywords: LCHAD deficiency; LCKAT deficiency; MTP deficiency; long-chain fatty acid oxidation; mitochondrial trifunctional protein complex; newborn screening.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • 3-Hydroxyacyl CoA Dehydrogenases
  • Cardiomyopathies* / diagnosis
  • Cardiomyopathies* / genetics
  • Humans
  • Hypoglycemia*
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Lipid Metabolism, Inborn Errors* / diagnosis
  • Lipid Metabolism, Inborn Errors* / genetics
  • Lipid Metabolism, Inborn Errors* / metabolism
  • Mitochondrial Myopathies
  • Mitochondrial Trifunctional Protein / deficiency
  • Molecular Biology
  • Neonatal Screening
  • Nervous System Diseases
  • Netherlands
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Rhabdomyolysis* / diagnosis
  • Rhabdomyolysis* / genetics


  • 3-Hydroxyacyl CoA Dehydrogenases
  • Mitochondrial Trifunctional Protein

Supplementary concepts

  • Trifunctional Protein Deficiency With Myopathy And Neuropathy