Mutations in the human biotinidase gene that cause profound biotinidase deficiency in symptomatic children: molecular, biochemical, and clinical analysis

Pediatr Res. 1997 Dec;42(6):840-8. doi: 10.1203/00006450-199712000-00020.


Biotinidase deficiency is an autosomal recessively inherited disorder that results in the inability to recycle the vitamin biotin. The disorder can cause neurologic and cutaneous abnormalities that can be treated effectively with pharmacologic doses of biotin. We identified 21 mutations that cause profound biotinidase deficiency in 37 symptomatic children (30 different probands and 7 siblings), as well as provide relevant biochemical and clinical information for each child. The two most common mutations (G98:d7i3 and R538C) were found in 31 of 60 alleles (52%), whereas the remainder of the alleles are accounted for by the 19 other unique mutations. Serum samples were available from 18 children, of these 11 had no detectable cross-reacting material (CRM) to antibody prepared against normal human serum biotinidase, three had reduced quantities of CRM and four had normal quantities of CRM in serum. All of these mutations result in complete absence of biotinyl-transferase activity in serum. Two polymorphisms were also identified in normal individuals. It is apparent that a child who inherits any of these mutations, either in the homozygous state or in combination, can develop the clinical features of the disorder if untreated. There are, however, no clear genotype/phenotype correlations that would allow for the prediction of the type, severity, or age of onset of symptoms.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Acyltransferases / blood
  • Acyltransferases / deficiency
  • Acyltransferases / genetics*
  • Amidohydrolases / blood
  • Amidohydrolases / deficiency
  • Amidohydrolases / genetics*
  • Biotinidase
  • Child
  • Genetic Testing
  • Genotype
  • Humans
  • Mutation
  • Phenotype
  • Sequence Analysis, DNA


  • Acyltransferases
  • Amidohydrolases
  • Biotinidase