Aspartylglucosaminuria (AGU) is a rare lysosomal storage disorder that causes stagnation of development in adolescence and neurodegeneration in early adulthood. Precision therapies, including gene transfer therapy, are in development with a goal of taking advantage of the slow clinical course. Understanding of disease natural history and identification of disease-relevant biomarkers are important steps in clinical trial readiness. We describe the clinical features of a diverse population of patients with AGU, including potential imaging and electrophysiological biomarkers. This is a single-center, cross-sectional study of the clinical, neuropsychological, electrophysiological, and imaging characteristics of AGU. A comprehensive assessment of eight participants (5 Non-Finnish) revealed a mean non-verbal IQ (NVIQ) of 70.25 ± 10.33 which decreased with age (rs = −0.85, p = 0.008). All participants demonstrated deficits in communication and gross/fine motor dysfunction. Auditory and visual evoked potentials demonstrated abnormalities in one or both modalities in 7 of 8 subjects, suggesting sensory pathway dysfunction. Brain imaging demonstrated T2 FLAIR hypointensity in the pulvinar nuclei and cerebral atrophy, as previously shown in the Finnish AGU population. Magnetic resonance spectroscopy (MRS) showed a 5.1 ppm peak corresponding to the toxic substrate (GlcNAc-Asn), which accumulates in AGU. Our results showed there was no significant difference between Finnish and Non-Finnish patients, and performance on standardized cognitive and motor testing was similar to prior studies. Age-related changes on functional assessments and disease-relevant abnormalities on surrogate biomarkers, such as MRS, could be used as outcome measures in a clinical trial.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)425-433
Number of pages9
JournalJIMD Reports
Issue number5
StatePublished - Sep 2022


  • AGA
  • aspartylglucosaminuria
  • electrophysiology
  • gene transfer therapy
  • lysosomal storage disorder
  • neuroimaging

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Internal Medicine
  • Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology (miscellaneous)


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