1Departments of Neurology, University of Düsseldorf, Moorenstrasse 5, 40225 Düsseldorf, Germany.
2Departments of Anesthesiology, University of Düsseldorf, Moorenstrasse 5, 40225 Düsseldorf, Germany.
3Experimental and Clinical Research Center, Charité-Universitätsmedizin Berlin, Corporate Member of Freie Universität Berlin and Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin, 10117 Berlin, Germany.
The aim of this study was to demonstrate that pseudocholinesterase (CHE) serum level is a useful diagnostic biomarker for untreated Wilson's disease (WD). Between 2013 and 2019, about 75 patients were referred to the outpatient department of the University of Düsseldorf with suspected Wilson's disease. In 31 patients with suspected Wilson's disease (WD-SUS-group), WD was excluded by means of investigations other than analysis of blood and urine. A total of 27 parameters of blood and urine in these 31 patients were compared to those of 20 de novo patients with manifest WD (WD-DEF-group), which parameter showed the highest significance level of difference between the WD-DEF-group and the WD-SUS-group. Thereafter, receiver operating characteristics (ROC-curves) were analyzed to evaluate which parameter showed the largest area under the curve (AUC) to detect WD. Finally, a logistic regression analysis was performed to analyze which combination of parameters allowed the best classification of the 51 patients either into the WD-DEF-group or into the WD-SUS-group. CHE showed the highest significance level for a difference between the WD-DEF- and WD-SUS-group, had the highest AUC, and, in combination with ceruloplasmin, allowed 100% correct classification. Without CHE, no other combination of parameters reached this level of correct classification. After the initiation of treatment, which regularly results in an improvement in CHE, the high diagnostic accuracy of this biomarker was lost. Cholinesterase turns out to be an excellent biomarker for differentiation between untreated de novo patients with manifest WD and heterozygotic gene carriers.