Biochemical analysis and whole-exome sequencing identified mutations in the Golgi-localized UDP-galactose transporter SLC35A2 that define an undiagnosed X-linked congenital disorder of glycosylation (CDG) in three unrelated families. Each mutation reduced UDP-galactose transport, leading to galactose-deficient glycoproteins. Two affected males were somatic mosaics, suggesting that a wild-type SLC35A2 allele may be required for survival. In infancy, the commonly used biomarker transferrin showed abnormal glycosylation, but its appearance became normal later in childhood, without any corresponding clinical improvement. This may indicate selection against cells carrying the mutant allele. To detect other individuals with such mutations, we suggest transferrin testing in infancy. Here, we report somatic mosaicism in CDG, and our work stresses the importance of combining both genetic and biochemical diagnoses.
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