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Test ID: NEURF    
Neuraminidase, Fibroblasts

Useful For Suggests clinical disorders or settings where the test may be helpful

Aids in the diagnosis of sialidosis and galactosialidosis

Clinical Information Discusses physiology, pathophysiology, and general clinical aspects, as they relate to a laboratory test

Sialidosis, also known as mucolipidosis I, is an autosomal recessive lysosomal storage disorder resulting from a deficiency of the enzyme neuraminidase. Clinical presentation can vary and phenotypes are typically categorized by age of onset. Type I is considered to be the milder form of sialidosis and is characterized by a cherry-red spot on the retina, progressive decreased acuity, impaired color vision, or night blindness. Neurologic problems include gait abnormalities and poorly controlled myoclonus. Type II sialidosis is distinguished from type I by the presence of dysmorphic features, including coarse facies, hepatosplenomegaly, and dysostosis multiplex, early age of onset, and its more rapid disease progression. Developmental delay is frequently present in type II sialidosis. The congenital form is typically associated with hydrops.


In addition to primary neuraminidase deficiency disorders, galactosialidosis is an autosomal recessive lysosomal storage disease associated with a combined deficiency of beta-galactosidase and neuraminidase secondary to a defect in the cathepsin A protein. The disorder can be classified into 3 subtypes based on age of onset and clinical presentation. Typical clinical presentation is coarse facial features, cherry-red spots, and skeletal changes, especially of the spine. The early infantile form is associated with fetal hydrops, kidney problems, and early death. The late infantile form typically presents with dysostosis multiplex, hepatosplenomegaly, and/or heart valve problems. The juvenile/adult form is typically characterized by progressive neurologic degeneration, ataxia, and/or angiokeratomas. The incidence of the juvenile/adult form is greater in individuals of Japanese ancestry.

Reference Values Describes reference intervals and additional information for interpretation of test results. May include intervals based on age and sex when appropriate. Intervals are Mayo-derived, unless otherwise designated. If an interpretive report is provided, the reference value field will state this.

>0.10 nmol/min/mg Prot

Interpretation Provides information to assist in interpretation of the test results

Specimens with activity >0.10 nmol/min/mg protein are considered to be normal.


Specimens with activity < or =0.10 nmol/min/mg protein are considered to be abnormal and suggestive of neuraminidase deficiency. Molecular confirmation is recommended.

Cautions Discusses conditions that may cause diagnostic confusion, including improper specimen collection and handling, inappropriate test selection, and interfering substances

This test cannot discriminate carriers, hence it is not recommended for carrier screening


Neuraminidase is a particularly unstable enzyme and may be quickly destroyed by freezing, sonication, solubilization, and most purification procedures.

Clinical Reference Provides recommendations for further in-depth reading of a clinical nature

1. Thomas GH: Chapter 140: Disorders of Glycoprotein Degradation: Alpha-Mannosidosis, Beta-Mannosidosis, Fucosidosis, and Sialidosis. In The Metabolic Basis of Inherited Disease. Eighth edition. Edited by D Valle. AL Beaudet, B Vogelstein. New York, McGraw-Hill Book Company. Available at Accessed 02/27/2014

2. Enns GM, Steiner RD, Cowan TM: Lysosomal Disorders. In Pediatric Endocrinology and Inborn Errors of Metabolism. Edited by K Sarafoglou, GF Hoffmann, KS Roth. New York, McGraw-Hill Medical Division, 2009, pp 725-726, 745-746

3. d'Azzo A, Andria G, Bonten E,  Annunziata I: Chapter 152: Galactosialidosis. In The Metabolic Basis of Inherited Disease. Eighth edition. Edited by D Valle. AL Beaudet, B Vogelstein. New York, McGraw-Hill Book Company. Available at Accessed 02/27/2014

Special Instructions and Forms Describes specimen collection and preparation information, test algorithms, and other information pertinent to test. Also includes pertinent information and consent forms to be used when requesting a particular test