Rinsho Shinkeigaku (Clinical Neurology)

Case Report

A case of variant biochemical phenotype of Niemann-Pick disease type C accompanying savant syndrome

Mio Hamatani, M.D.1), Naoto Jingami, M.D.1), Kengo Uemura, M.D., Ph.D.1)2), Naoe Nakasone3), Hisanori Kinoshita, M.D.1), Hodaka Yamakado, M.D., Ph.D.1), Haruaki Ninomiya, M.D., Ph.D.3) and Ryosuke Takahashi, M.D., Ph.D.1)

1)Department of Neurology, Kyoto University Graduate School of Medicine
2)Department of Neurology, Ishiki Hospital
3)Department of Biological Regulations, Tottori University Faculty of Medicine

A 40-year-old man was referred to our hospital because of vertical supranuclear gaze palsy, frequent sudden loss of muscle tonus and ataxia for several years. He had a history of prolonged neonatal jaundice. He was given a diagnosis of autism in his childhood, followed by a diagnosis of schizophrenia in his teenage. He also developed a savant skill of calendar calculating. 123I-IMP-SPECT showed decreased cerebral blood flow in the left frontotemporal lobe as often seen in savant syndrome. Although genetic analysis of NPC1 and NPC2 revealed no pathogenic mutation, filipin staining of cultured fibroblasts from his biopsied skin revealed a certain amount of intracellular cholesterol storage pattern, indicating a variant biochemical phenotype of Niemann-Pick disease type C (NPC). The diagnosis of adulthood onset NPC is difficult and challenging, especially for neurologists, because the symptoms and signs are not as clear as those in the classical childhood onset NPC and this subtype is not yet widely known. However, the diagnosis can be made by a combination of filipin staining of fibroblast and/or gene analysis. As a disease-specific therapy for NPC has been approved in Japan, the diagnosis of NPC is of significance.
Full Text of this Article in Japanese PDF (715K)

(CLINICA NEUROL, 56: 424|429, 2016)
key words: Niemann-Pick disease type C (NPC), vertical supranuclear gaze palsy, filipin staining, savant syndrome, variant biochemical phenotype

(Received: 19-Nov-15)