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A group of neonates with Gaucher disease with a particularly devastating clinical course is described. The phenotype of these infants is analogous to that of a Gaucher mouse, which was created by targeted disruption of the mouse glucocerebroside gene. Similar to the homozygous mutant mice with glucocerebrosidase deficiency, these infants present at or shortly after birth, have rapidly progressing fulminant disease, and many have associated ichthyotic skin and/or hydrops fetalis. This transgenetic mouse model of Gaucher disease has helped us to appreciate a distinct Gaucher phenotype. Potentially, as this technology is applied to create other animal models of metabolic diseases, it may enable the recognition of other, as yet unappreciated presentations of inherited disorders.

(C) International Pediatrics Research Foundation, Inc. 1992. All Rights Reserved.