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December 1981

Progressive Infantile Poliodystrophy: Association With Disturbed Pyruvate Oxidation in Muscle and Liver

Arch Neurol. 1981;38(12):767-772. doi:10.1001/archneur.1981.00510120067011

• Progressive infantile poliodystrophy (Alpers' disease) is associated with abnormalities in pyruvate metabolism or in cell mitochondria. A 3-year-old boy had a severe and rapidly progressive neurologic disorder characterized by psychomotor retardation, tetraparesis, ataxia, and myoclonic jerks, the illness being exacerbated during periods of infection. Lactate concentration in CSF was elevated. Histopathologic studies revealed lipid storage in liver and muscle. Autopsy showed a progressive infantile poliodystrophy. Mitochondrial abnormalities were found in heart muscle. Biochemical studies of muscle and liver tissue suggested a disturbance in nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide (reduced form) oxidation.