Thyroid hormone (TH) is crucial for the development of different organs, in particular the brain, as disturbances in TH supply cause severe neurological abnormalities. TH transporters are necessary for the intracellular availability of TH to have access to the deiodinases and nuclear receptors inside the cell. The clinical importance of TH transporters is dramatically shown in patients with mutations in MCT8, suffering from severe X-linked psychomotor retardation in combination with disturbed TH levels, especially high serum T3levels, now referred as Allan-Herndon-Dudley Syndrome (AHDS). Worldwide >45 families have now been identified with MCT8 mutations. Most MCT8 mutations result in a complete loss of TH transport function when tested in vitro, but some mutations show significant residual activity and are associated with a somewhat milder clinical phenotype.It is difficult to identify MCT8 patients only on the basis of the clinical characteristics of X-linked mental retardation. Therefore, the criterion for MCT8 mutation screening in these patients is the profile of increased T3and low-normal to low FT4serum levels.

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Molecular and Cellular Endocrinology
Erasmus MC: University Medical Center Rotterdam

Friesema, E., & Visser, E. (2010). Genetics and phenomics of thyroid hormone transport by MCT8. Molecular and Cellular Endocrinology (Vol. 322, pp. 107–113). doi:10.1016/j.mce.2010.01.016