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A 15-year-old girl presented with recurrent encephalopathic episodes, epilepsy, myopathy and chronic lactic acidosis. A muscle biopsy revealed the presence of ragged red fibres and mitochondria with paracrystalline inclusions. Biochemical studies on freshly isolated skeletal muscle mitochondria demonstrated a deficiency of NADH-CoQ reductase activity. Investigation of her gastrocnemius muscle at rest by phosphorus nuclear magnetic resonance displayed a reduced phosphocreatine concentration with elevated levels of inorganic phosphate and ADP. Abnormalities were also apparent in her brain spectrum. It is therefore possible that the mitochondrial defect present in skeletal muscle is also being expressed in the brain.


Journal article


J Neurol Sci

Publication Date





105 - 118


Adolescent, Brain, Brain Diseases, Energy Metabolism, Female, Humans, Magnetic Resonance Spectroscopy, Mitochondria, Muscle, Muscles, Muscular Diseases, Phosphorus, Physical Exertion, Spectrum Analysis