Isolated sulfite oxidase deficiency

Neuropediatrics. 1996 Dec;27(6):299-304. doi: 10.1055/s-2007-973798.


Isolated sulfite oxidase (SO) deficiency is an autosomal recessively inherited inborn error of sulfur metabolism. In this report of a ninth patient the clinical history, laboratory results, neuropathological findings and a mutation in the sulfite oxidase gene are described. The data from this patient and previously published patients with isolated sulfite oxidase deficiency and molybdenum cofactor deficiency are summarized to characterize this rare disorder. The patient presented neonatally with intractable seizures and did not progress developmentally beyond the neonatal stage. Dislocated lenses were apparent at 2 months. There was increased urine excretion of sulfite and S-sulfocysteine and a decreased concentration of plasma cystine. A lactic acidemia was present for 6 months. Liver sulfite oxidase activity was not detectable but xanthine dehydrogenase activity was normal. The boy died of respiratory failure at 32 months. Neuropathological findings of cortical necrosis and extensive cavitating leukoencephalopathy were reminiscent of those seen in severe perinatal asphyxia suggesting an etiology of energy deficiency. A point mutation that resulted in a truncated protein missing the molybdenum-binding site has been identified.

Publication types

  • Case Reports
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Base Sequence
  • Brain / abnormalities
  • Brain / pathology
  • DNA, Complementary
  • Electroencephalography
  • Fatal Outcome
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging
  • Male
  • Metabolic Diseases / genetics
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • Oxidoreductases Acting on Sulfur Group Donors / deficiency*
  • Oxidoreductases Acting on Sulfur Group Donors / urine
  • Sulfur / metabolism


  • DNA, Complementary
  • Sulfur
  • Oxidoreductases Acting on Sulfur Group Donors