Lysosomal storage disease in Abyssinian cats is apparently well documented. I do not know the frequency of occurrence. Studies indicate that it is inherited through an autosomal recessive gene. The disease is difficult to describe as this is a very technical area. What happens is that a certain enzyme is not produced in a subunit of a cell called a "lysosome". Enzymes break down macromolecules to other substances. If there is no enzyme there is no breakdown and instead the macromolecules are stored. This causes the cells to become dysfunctional. In turn this causes neurological problems the symptoms of which are first noticeable when the kitten is 8-12 weeks old. The first clinical sign is a head quiver. This is followed by ataxia, dysmetria, muscle tremors, in-coordination and an inability to walk. Often kittens will seizure when handled. The symptoms are due to cerebellar disease and the cats die before one year of age. An amorphous material becomes stored in neurons and macrophages.
Lysosomal storage disease in Abyssinian cats - See Wikipedia definitions below of the more difficult terms above. These are reproduced under GNU Free Documentation License, Version 1.2 or any later version - see Wikipedia licensing below
Ataxia: Ataxia meaning "lack of order" is a neurological sign and symptom consisting of gross incoordination of muscle movements.
Dysmetria (Greek: "difficult to measure") refers to a lack of coordination of movement typified by the undershoot and/or overshoot of intended position with the hand, arm, leg, or eye (this refers to people but is equally relevant for cats).
Macrophages (Greek: "big eaters", from makros "large" + phagein "eat") are cells within the tissues that originate from specific white blood cells called monocytes
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Lysosomal storage disease in Abyssinian cats to Abyssinian cats
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