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May 1968


Author Affiliations


Am J Dis Child. 1968;115(5):637. doi:10.1001/archpedi.1968.02100010639025

To the Editor.—Doctor Ghadimi's recent review article in the American Journal of Diseases of Children, "Diagnosis of Inborn Errors of Amino Acid Metabolism" (114: 433 [Oct] 1967) was read with interest. I should like to ask the author what basis he has for referring to the transient chemical condition which occurs in the newborn period characterized by slightly high serum phenylalanine levels and tremendously high serum tyrosine levels as transient phenylalaninemia. Transient tyrosinemia would appear to be a better choice of terms. Technically the name Dr. Ghadimi gives is correct although misleading. I basically find fault with the assumption that this condition is due to an "immaturity of the phenylalanine hydroxylase... system (s)" (p 438). It would seem that the very presence of greatly increased serum tyrosine levels would argue for the "immaturity," if present, to be totally concerned with enzyme systems which break down tyrosine (ie, tyrosine oxidase,

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