Aldolase is an enzyme that participates in glycolysis, which is the pathway for metabolizing glucose into energy. Aldolase is found primarily in skeletal muscle, liver, and brain tissue. Elevated levels of aldolase in the blood occur in diseases of muscle including Duchenne muscular dystrophy, dermatomyositis, and polymyositis. Elevated aldolase concentrations are not necessarily specific for muscle disease (creatine kinase is more sensitive and specific); however, aldolase may be elevated during muscle inflammation (myositis) when creatine kinase levels are normal. Aldolase is reported by laboratories as units per liter.
Normal Ranges for aldolase:
0-16 years: <14.5 U/L
> or =17 years: <7.7 U/L
Aldolase levels in the blood cannot be too low. The absence of aldolase in the blood would be considered normal.
The highest levels of blood aldolase occur in people with Duchenne muscular dystrophy. Elevated levels are also seen in other muscle diseases. The levels of aldolase may be very high early in the disease, but less so as affected individuals lose muscle mass. Aldolase may temporarily increase immediately after a heart attack.
Some specific causes of aldolase levels are:
- Duchenne muscular dystrophy
- Limb-girdle dystrophy
- Acute viral hepatitis
- Prostate tumors
- Liver metastases
- Chronic leukemia
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