Leucocyte glutamate dehydrogenase (GDH) activity was measured in 26 normal control subjects, 20 patients with multiple system atrophy presenting features of either olivopontocerebellar atrophy or striatonigral degeneration and in a heterogenous group of 15 patients with spinocerebellar degenerations. A broad range of GDH activity was found in all three groups. Low activity failed to correlate with a specific clinical entity. Patients followed to post-mortem examination to date have demonstrated histological features of at least three distinct morbid entities. It is concluded, contrary to earlier reports including the authors', that low leukocyte GDH activity does not identify a particular type of multiple system atrophy.
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