Neurological, Psychiatric, and Biochemical Aspects of Thiamine Deficiency in Children and Adults.
ABSTRACT: Thiamine (vitamin B1) is an essential nutrient that serves as a cofactor for a number of enzymes, mostly with mitochondrial localization. Some thiamine-dependent enzymes are involved in energy metabolism and biosynthesis of nucleic acids whereas others are part of the antioxidant machinery. The brain is highly vulnerable to thiamine deficiency due to its heavy reliance on mitochondrial ATP production. This is more evident during rapid growth (i.e., perinatal periods and children) in which thiamine deficiency is commonly associated with either malnutrition or genetic defects. Thiamine deficiency contributes to a number of conditions spanning from mild neurological and psychiatric symptoms (confusion, reduced memory, and sleep disturbances) to severe encephalopathy, ataxia, congestive heart failure, muscle atrophy, and even death. This review discusses the current knowledge on thiamine deficiency and associated morbidity of neurological and psychiatric disorders, with special emphasis on the pediatric population, as well as the putative beneficial effect of thiamine supplementation in autism spectrum disorder (ASD) and other neurological conditions.
Project description:Alaskan Husky encephalopathy (AHE(1) ) is a fatal brain disease associated with a mutation in SLC19A3.1 (c.624insTTGC, c.625C>A). This gene encodes for a thiamine transporter 2 with a predominately (CNS) central nervous system distribution. Considering that brain is particularly vulnerable to thiamine deficiency because of its reliance on thiamine pyrophosphate (TPP)-dependent metabolic pathways involved in energy metabolism and neurotransmitter synthesis, we characterized the impact of this mutation on thiamine status, brain bioenergetics and the contribution of oxidative stress to this phenotype. In silico modeling of the mutated transporter indicated a significant loss of alpha-helices resulting in a more open protein structure suggesting an impaired thiamine transport ability. The cerebral cortex and thalamus of affected dogs were severely deficient in TPP-dependent enzymes accompanied by decreases in mitochondrial mass and oxidative phosphorylation (OXPHOS) capacity, and increases in oxidative stress. These results along with the behavioral and pathological findings indicate that the phenotype associated with AHE is consistent with a brain-specific thiamine deficiency, leading to brain mitochondrial dysfunction and increased oxidative stress. While some of the biochemical deficits, neurobehavior and affected brain areas in AHE were shared by Wernicke's and Korsakoff's syndromes, several differences were noted likely arising from a tissue-specific vs. that from a whole-body thiamine deficiency.
Project description:Many wildlife populations are declining at rates higher than can be explained by known threats to biodiversity. Recently, thiamine (vitamin B1) deficiency has emerged as a possible contributing cause. Here, thiamine status was systematically investigated in three animal classes: bivalves, ray-finned fishes, and birds. Thiamine diphosphate is required as a cofactor in at least five life-sustaining enzymes that are required for basic cellular metabolism. Analysis of different phosphorylated forms of thiamine, as well as of activities and amount of holoenzyme and apoenzyme forms of thiamine-dependent enzymes, revealed episodically occurring thiamine deficiency in all three animal classes. These biochemical effects were also linked to secondary effects on growth, condition, liver size, blood chemistry and composition, histopathology, swimming behaviour and endurance, parasite infestation, and reproduction. It is unlikely that the thiamine deficiency is caused by impaired phosphorylation within the cells. Rather, the results point towards insufficient amounts of thiamine in the food. By investigating a large geographic area, by extending the focus from lethal to sublethal thiamine deficiency, and by linking biochemical alterations to secondary effects, we demonstrate that the problem of thiamine deficiency is considerably more widespread and severe than previously reported.
Project description:The eastern Baltic cod (Gadus morhua) population has been decreasing in the Baltic Sea for at least 30 years. Condition indices of the Baltic cod have decreased, and previous studies have suggested that this might be due to overfishing, predation, lower dissolved oxygen or changes in salinity. However, numerous studies from the Baltic Sea have demonstrated an ongoing thiamine deficiency in several animal classes, both invertebrates and vertebrates. The thiamine status of the eastern Baltic cod was investigated to determine if thiamine deficiency might be a factor in ongoing population declines. Thiamine concentrations were determined by chemical analyses of thiamine, thiamine monophosphate and thiamine diphosphate (combined SumT) in the liver using high performance liquid chromatography. Biochemical analyses measured the activity of the thiamine diphosphate-dependent enzyme transketolase to determine the proportion of apoenzymes in both liver and brain tissue. These biochemical analyses showed that 77% of the cod were thiamine deficient in the liver, of which 13% had a severe thiamine deficiency (i.e. 25% transketolase enzymes lacked thiamine diphosphate). The brain tissue of 77% of the cod showed thiamine deficiency, of which 64% showed severe thiamine deficiency. The thiamine deficiency biomarkers were investigated to find correlations to different biological parameters, such as length, weight, otolith weight, age (annuli counting) and different organ weights. The results suggested that thiamine deficiency increased with age. The SumT concentration ranged between 2.4-24 nmol/g in the liver, where the specimens with heavier otoliths had lower values of SumT (P = 0.0031). Of the cod sampled, only 2% of the specimens had a Fulton's condition factor indicating a healthy specimen, and 49% had a condition factor below 0.8, indicating poor health status. These results, showing a severe thiamine deficiency in eastern Baltic cod from the only known area where spawning presently occurs for this species, are of grave concern.
Project description:BACKGROUND: The clinical characteristics distinguishing treatable thiamine transporter-2 deficiency (ThTR2) due to SLC19A3 genetic defects from the other devastating causes of Leigh syndrome are sparse. METHODS: We report the clinical follow-up after thiamine and biotin supplementation in four children with ThTR2 deficiency presenting with Leigh and biotin-thiamine-responsive basal ganglia disease phenotypes. We established whole-blood thiamine reference values in 106 non-neurological affected children and monitored thiamine levels in SLC19A3 patients after the initiation of treatment. We compared our results with those of 69 patients with ThTR2 deficiency after a review of the literature. RESULTS: At diagnosis, the patients were aged 1 month to 17 years, and all of them showed signs of acute encephalopathy, generalized dystonia, and brain lesions affecting the dorsal striatum and medial thalami. One patient died of septicemia, while the remaining patients evidenced clinical and radiological improvements shortly after the initiation of thiamine. Upon follow-up, the patients received a combination of thiamine (10-40 mg/kg/day) and biotin (1-2 mg/kg/day) and remained stable with residual dystonia and speech difficulties. After establishing reference values for the different age groups, whole-blood thiamine quantification was a useful method for treatment monitoring. CONCLUSIONS: ThTR2 deficiency is a reversible cause of acute dystonia and Leigh encephalopathy in the pediatric years. Brain lesions affecting the dorsal striatum and medial thalami may be useful in the differential diagnosis of other causes of Leigh syndrome. Further studies are needed to validate the therapeutic doses of thiamine and how to monitor them in these patients.
Project description:Wild birds of several species are dying in large numbers from an idiopathic paralytic disease in the Baltic Sea area. Here, we demonstrate strong relationships between this disease, breeding failure, and thiamine (vitamin B(1)) deficiency in eggs, pulli, and full-grown individuals. Thiamine is essential for vertebrates, and its diphosphorylated form functions as a cofactor for several life sustaining enzymes, whereas the triphosphorylated form is necessary for the functioning of neuronal membranes. Paralyzed individuals were remedied by thiamine treatment. Moreover, thiamine deficiency and detrimental effects on thiamine-dependent enzymes were demonstrated in the yolk, liver, and brain. We propose that the mortality and breeding failure are part of a thiamine deficiency syndrome, which may have contributed significantly to declines in many bird populations during the last decades.
Project description:Thiamine is an essential enzyme cofactor required for proper metabolic function and maintenance of metabolism and energy production in the brain. In developed countries, thiamine deficiency (TD) is most often manifested following chronic alcohol consumption leading to impaired mitochondrial function, oxidative stress, inflammation and excitotoxicity. These biochemical lesions result in apoptotic cell death in both neurons and astrocytes. Comparable histological injuries in patients with hypoxia/ischemia and TD have been described in the thalamus and mammillary bodies, suggesting a congruency between the cellular responses to these stresses. Consistent with hypoxia/ischemia, TD stabilizes and activates Hypoxia Inducible Factor-1? (HIF-1?) under physiological oxygen levels. However, the role of TD-induced HIF-1? in neurological injury is currently unknown. Using Western blot analysis and RT-PCR, we have demonstrated that TD induces HIF-1? expression and activity in primary mouse astrocytes. We observed a time-dependent increase in mRNA and protein expression of the pro-apoptotic and pro-inflammatory HIF-1? target genes MCP1, BNIP3, Nix and Noxa during TD. We also observed apoptotic cell death in TD as demonstrated by PI/Annexin V staining, TUNEL assay, and Cell Death ELISA. Pharmacological inhibition of HIF-1? activity using YC1 and thiamine repletion both reduced expression of pro-apoptotic HIF-1? target genes and apoptotic cell death in TD. These results demonstrate that induction of HIF-1? mediated transcriptional up-regulation of pro-apoptotic/inflammatory signaling contributes to astrocyte cell death during thiamine deficiency.
Project description:Thiamine deficiency is common in populations consuming polished rice as a major source of carbohydrates. Thiamine is required to synthesize thiamine pyrophosphate (TPP), an essential cofactor of enzymes of central metabolism. Its biosynthesis pathway has been partially elucidated and the effect of overexpression of a few genes such as thi1 and thiC, on thiamine accumulation in rice has been reported. Based on current knowledge, this review focuses on the potential of gene editing in metabolic engineering of thiamine biosynthesis pathway to improve thiamine in rice grains. Candidate genes, suitable for modification of the structural part to evolve more efficient versions of enzymes in the pathway, are discussed. For example, adjacent cysteine residues may be introduced in the catalytic domain of thi4 to improve the turn over activity of thiamine thiazole synthase 2. Motif specific editing to modify promoter regulatory regions of genes is discussed to modulate gene expression. Editing cis acting regulatory elements in promoter region can shift the expression of transporters and thiamine binding proteins to endosperm. This can enhance dietary availability of thiamine from rice grains. Differential transcriptomics on rice varieties with contrasting grain thiamine and functional genomic studies will identify more strategic targets for editing in future. Developing functionally enhanced foods by biofortification is a sustainable approach to make diets wholesome.
Project description:Thiamine plays a very important coenzymatic and non-coenzymatic role in the regulation of basic metabolism. Thiamine diphosphate is a coenzyme of many enzymes, most of which occur in prokaryotes. Pyruvate dehydrogenase and 2-oxoglutarate dehydrogenase complexes as well as transketolase are the examples of thiamine-dependent enzymes present in eukaryotes, including human. Therefore, thiamine is considered as drug or diet supplement which can support the treatment of many pathologies including neurodegenerative and vascular system diseases. On the other hand, thiamine antivitamins, which can interact with thiamine-dependent enzymes impeding their native functions, thiamine transport into the cells or a thiamine diphosphate synthesis, are good propose to drug design. The development of organic chemistry in the last century allowed the synthesis of various thiamine antimetabolites such as amprolium, pyrithiamine, oxythiamine, or 3-deazathiamine. Results of biochemical and theoretical chemistry research show that affinity to thiamine diphosphate-dependent enzymes of these synthetic molecules exceeds the affinity of native coenzyme. Therefore, some of them have already been used in the treatment of coccidiosis (amprolium), other are extensively studied as cytostatics in the treatment of cancer or fungal infections (oxythiamine and pyrithiamine). This review summarizes the current knowledge concerning the synthesis and mechanisms of action of selected thiamine antivitamins and indicates the potential of their practical use.
Project description:The thiamine transporter gene SLC19A2 was recently found to be mutated in thiamine responsive megaloblastic anaemia with diabetes and deafness (TRMA, Rogers syndrome), an early onset autosomal recessive disorder. We now report a novel G1074A transition mutation in exon 4 of the SLC19A2 gene, predicting a Trp358 to ter change, in a girl with consanguineous parents. In addition to the typical triad of Rogers syndrome, the girl presented with short stature, hepatosplenomegaly, retinal degeneration, and a brain MRI lesion. Both muscle and skin biopsies were obtained before high dose thiamine supplementation. While no mitochondrial abnormalities were seen on morphological examination of muscle, biochemical analysis showed a severe deficiency of pyruvate dehydrogenase and complex I of the respiratory chain. In the patient's fibroblasts, the supplementation with high doses of thiamine resulted in restoration of complex I activity. In conclusion, we provide evidence that thiamine deficiency affects complex I activity. The clinical features of TRMA, resembling in part those found in typical mitochondrial disorders with complex I deficiency, may be caused by a secondary defect in mitochondrial energy production.
Project description:Thiamine is a vitamin that functions as a cofactor for key enzymes in carbon and energy metabolism in all living cells. While most plants, fungi, and bacteria can synthesize thiamine de novo, the oleaginous yeast Yarrowia lipolytica cannot. In this study, we used proteomics together with physiological characterization to elucidate key metabolic processes influenced and regulated by thiamine availability and to identify the genetic basis of thiamine auxotrophy in Y. lipolytica Specifically, we found that thiamine depletion results in decreased protein abundance for the lipid biosynthesis pathway and energy metabolism (i.e., ATP synthase), leading to the negligible growth and poor sugar assimilation observed in our study. Using comparative genomics, we identified the missing 4-amino-5-hydroxymethyl-2-methylpyrimidine phosphate synthase (THI13) gene for the de novo thiamine biosynthesis in Y. lipolytica and discovered an exceptional promoter, P3, that exhibits strong activation and tight repression by low and high thiamine concentrations, respectively. Capitalizing on the strength of our thiamine-regulated promoter (P3) to express the missing gene from Saccharomyces cerevisiae (scTHI13), we engineered a thiamine-prototrophic Y. lipolytica strain. By comparing this engineered strain to the wild-type strain, we revealed the tight relationship between thiamine availability and lipid biosynthesis and demonstrated enhanced lipid production with thiamine supplementation in the engineered thiamine-prototrophic Y. lipolytica strain.IMPORTANCE Thiamine plays a crucial role as an essential cofactor for enzymes involved in carbon and energy metabolism in all living cells. Thiamine deficiency has detrimental consequences for cellular health. Yarrowia lipolytica, a nonconventional oleaginous yeast with broad biotechnological applications, is a native thiamine auxotroph whose affected cellular metabolism is not well understood. Therefore, Y. lipolytica is an ideal eukaryotic host for the study of thiamine metabolism, especially because mammalian cells are also thiamine auxotrophic and thiamine deficiency is implicated in several human diseases. This study elucidates the fundamental effects of thiamine deficiency on cellular metabolism in Y. lipolytica and identifies genes and novel thiamine-regulated elements that eliminate thiamine auxotrophy in Y. lipolytica Furthermore, the discovery of thiamine-regulated elements enables the development of thiamine biosensors with useful applications in synthetic biology and metabolic engineering.