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Mucopolysacccharidoses: from understanding to treatment, a century of discoveries

Posted: December 23, 2012 at 7:48 am

After the first description of a patient recognized as a MPS case was made in 1917, several similar cases were described and identified. Observations reported in the middle of the twentieth century concerning the presence of acid mucopolysaccharides (later called glycosaminoglycans, or GAGs) in tissues and especially in urine of patients were instrumental in providing an identity for these diseases, which became referred as "mucopolysaccharidoses" (MPS). In the late 1960's it was demonstrated that MPS were caused by defects in the breakdown of GAGs, and the specific enzyme deficiencies for the 11 types and subtypes of MPS were identified thereafter. Genes involved in the MPS were subsequently identified, and a large number of disease-causing mutations were identified in each one. Although ...

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