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Disease Profile

Neuronal ceroid lipofuscinosis 10

Prevalence estimates on Rare Medical Network websites are calculated based on data available from numerous sources, including US and European government statistics, the NIH, Orphanet, and published epidemiologic studies. Rare disease population data is recognized to be highly variable, and based on a wide variety of source data and methodologies, so the prevalence data on this site should be assumed to be estimated and cannot be considered to be absolutely correct.


US Estimated

Europe Estimated

Age of onset





Autosomal dominant A pathogenic variant in only one gene copy in each cell is sufficient to cause an autosomal dominant disease.


Autosomal recessive Pathogenic variants in both copies of each gene of the chromosome are needed to cause an autosomal recessive disease and observe the mutant phenotype.


dominant X-linked dominant inheritance, sometimes referred to as X-linked dominance, is a mode of genetic inheritance by which a dominant gene is carried on the X chromosome.


recessive Pathogenic variants in both copies of a gene on the X chromosome cause an X-linked recessive disorder.


Mitochondrial or multigenic Mitochondrial genetic disorders can be caused by changes (mutations) in either the mitochondrial DNA or nuclear DNA that lead to dysfunction of the mitochondria and inadequate production of energy.


Multigenic or multifactor Inheritance involving many factors, of which at least one is genetic but none is of overwhelming importance, as in the causation of a disease by multiple genetic and environmental factors.


Not applicable


Other names (AKA)

CLN10; Ceroid lipofuscinosis neuronal Cathepsin D-deficient; Neuronal ceroid lipofuscinosis due to Cathepsin D deficiency;


Congenital and Genetic Diseases; Eye diseases; Metabolic disorders;


Neuronal ceroid lipofuscinosis 10 (CLN10 disease) is a type of neuronal ceroid lipofuscinosis (NCL), a group of severe diseases that affect the nervous system. Signs and symptoms of CLN10 usually appear soon after birth. They may include muscle stiffness, respiratory failure, and seizures that last several minutes (status epilepticus). Infants with CLN10 disease have a small brain and small head (microcephaly). They also have problems controlling their movements. The areas of the brain involved in thinking and emotions are also severely affected. Sadly, infants with CLN10 disease often do not survive longer than hours or weeks after birth.[1]

In some cases, people with CLN10 disease do not develop symptoms until later in infancy, childhood, or adulthood.[1][2] Symptoms in these cases may be more gradual and include ataxia, loss of speech and vision, and problems with memory and thinking (cognitive impairment). The lifespan of people diagnosed after early infancy is also shortened, but varies based on when their symptoms began.[1]

CLN10 disease is caused by changes (mutations) in the CTSD gene and inheritance is autosomal recessive.[1][3] If the disease-causing genetic change completely prevents the CLN10 protein (cathepsin D) from being made, the infant will be born with the severe type. If however, some working CLN2 protein is made, the person will develop either the late infantile, juvenile, or adult type. At this time, there are no effective treatment options for CLN10 disease. Therefore, therapy is aimed at easing symptoms and improving quality of life (palliative care).[2]

Please note: Batten disease originally referred specifically to the juvenile and most common form of NCL, now known as CLN3. However, the term Batten disease is increasingly used to describe all forms of NCL. All types of NCL also belong to a larger group of diseases known as lysosomal storage disorders.[4]


This table lists symptoms that people with this disease may have. For most diseases, symptoms will vary from person to person. People with the same disease may not have all the symptoms listed. This information comes from a database called the Human Phenotype Ontology (HPO) . The HPO collects information on symptoms that have been described in medical resources. The HPO is updated regularly. Use the HPO ID to access more in-depth information about a symptom.

Medical Terms Other Names
Learn More:
5%-29% of people have these symptoms
Sensory axonal neuropathy
Percent of people who have these symptoms is not available through HPO
Abnormality of metabolism/homeostasis
Laboratory abnormality
Metabolism abnormality

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Autosomal recessive inheritance
Cerebellar atrophy
Degeneration of cerebellum
Cerebral atrophy
Degeneration of cerebrum
Congenital onset
Symptoms present at birth
Increased neuronal autofluorescent lipopigment
Intellectual disability, progressive
Mental retardation, progressive
Progressive mental retardation

[ more ]

Intellectual disability, severe
Early and severe mental retardation
Mental retardation, severe
Severe mental retardation

[ more ]

Low-set ears
Low set ears
Lowset ears

[ more ]

Mental deterioration
Cognitive decline
Cognitive decline, progressive
Intellectual deterioration
Progressive cognitive decline

[ more ]

Abnormally small skull
Decreased circumference of cranium
Decreased size of skull
Reduced head circumference
Small head circumference

[ more ]

Neuronal loss in central nervous system
Loss of brain cells
Premature closure of fontanelles
Respiratory failure
Respiratory insufficiency
Respiratory impairment
Retinal atrophy
Muscle rigidity
Rod-cone dystrophy
Sloping forehead
Inclined forehead
Receding forehead

[ more ]

Involuntary muscle stiffness, contraction, or spasm
Status epilepticus
Repeated seizures without recovery between them
Visual loss
Loss of vision
Vision loss

[ more ]

Wide nasal bridge
Broad nasal bridge
Broad nasal root
Broadened nasal bridge
Increased breadth of bridge of nose
Increased breadth of nasal bridge
Increased width of bridge of nose
Increased width of nasal bridge
Nasal bridge broad
Wide bridge of nose
Widened nasal bridge

[ more ]



Making a diagnosis for a genetic or rare disease can often be challenging. Healthcare professionals typically look at a person’s medical history, symptoms, physical exam, and laboratory test results in order to make a diagnosis. The following resources provide information relating to diagnosis and testing for this condition. If you have questions about getting a diagnosis, you should contact a healthcare professional.

Testing Resources

  • The Genetic Testing Registry (GTR) provides information about the genetic tests for this condition. The intended audience for the GTR is health care providers and researchers. Patients and consumers with specific questions about a genetic test should contact a health care provider or a genetics professional.


    Support and advocacy groups can help you connect with other patients and families, and they can provide valuable services. Many develop patient-centered information and are the driving force behind research for better treatments and possible cures. They can direct you to research, resources, and services. Many organizations also have experts who serve as medical advisors or provide lists of doctors/clinics. Visit the group’s website or contact them to learn about the services they offer. Inclusion on this list is not an endorsement by GARD.

    Organizations Supporting this Disease

      Learn more

      These resources provide more information about this condition or associated symptoms. The in-depth resources contain medical and scientific language that may be hard to understand. You may want to review these resources with a medical professional.

      Where to Start

        In-Depth Information

        • GeneReviews provides current, expert-authored, peer-reviewed, full-text articles describing the application of genetic testing to the diagnosis, management, and genetic counseling of patients with specific inherited conditions.
        • Medscape Reference provides information on this topic. You may need to register to view the medical textbook, but registration is free.
        • The Monarch Initiative brings together data about this condition from humans and other species to help physicians and biomedical researchers. Monarch’s tools are designed to make it easier to compare the signs and symptoms (phenotypes) of different diseases and discover common features. This initiative is a collaboration between several academic institutions across the world and is funded by the National Institutes of Health. Visit the website to explore the biology of this condition.
        • Online Mendelian Inheritance in Man (OMIM) is a catalog of human genes and genetic disorders. Each entry has a summary of related medical articles. It is meant for health care professionals and researchers. OMIM is maintained by Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. 
        • Orphanet is a European reference portal for information on rare diseases and orphan drugs. Access to this database is free of charge.
        • PubMed is a searchable database of medical literature and lists journal articles that discuss Neuronal ceroid lipofuscinosis 10 . Click on the link to view a sample search on this topic.


          1. CLN10 disease. Genetics Home Reference. October, 2016; https://ghr.nlm.nih.gov/condition/cln10-disease.
          2. Ketterer S, Gomez-Auli A, Hillebrand LE, Petrera A, Ketscher A, Reinheckel T. Inherited diseases caused by mutations in cathepsin protease genes. FEBS J. May, 2017; 284(10):1437-1454. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/27926992.
          3. Kniffin CL. Ceroid Lipofuscinosis, Neuronal, 10. OMIM. September 8, 2015; https://www.omim.org/entry/610127.
          4. Mole SE, Williams RE. Neuronal Ceroid-Lipofuscinoses. GeneReviews. August 1, 2013; https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK1428/.