View Main Condition: Urea Cycle Disorders (UCD)
N-acetylglutamate synthase deficiency is a disorder that causes abnormally high levels of ammonia to accumulate in the blood. Ammonia, which is formed when proteins are broken down in the body, is toxic if the levels become too high. The brain is especially sensitive to the effects of excess ammonia.
Mutations in the NAGS gene cause N-acetylglutamate synthase deficiency. This condition belongs to a class of genetic diseases called urea cycle disorders because they are caused by problems with a process in the body called the urea cycle. The urea cycle is a sequence of reactions that occurs in liver cells. This cycle breaks down excess nitrogen, which is made when protein is used by the body, to make a compound called urea. Urea is removed from the body in urine.
N-acetylglutamate synthase deficiency is a very rare disorder. It is estimated to affect fewer than 1 in 2 million people worldwide.
This condition is inherited in an autosomal recessive pattern, which means both copies of the gene in each cell have mutations. The parents of an individual with an autosomal recessive condition each carry one copy of the mutated gene, but they typically do not show signs and symptoms of the condition.
Published Date: August 01, 2019Published By: National Institutes of Health
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