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Test ID DSAC Disaccharidase Activity Panel, Tissue

Shipping Instructions

Freeze immediately after collection and ship frozen.

Specimen Required

Specimen Type: Tissue

Source: Intestinal biopsy

Container/Tube: Clean, screw-topped plastic vial

Specimen Volume: 5 mg

Collection Instructions: Specimen should not be placed on gauze or filter paper, nor should any saline, support or embedding material be added.

Useful For

Evaluation of patients who present with signs or symptoms suggestive of disaccharidase disorders

This test is not intended for carrier detection.

Genetics Test Information

Diagnostic testing for patients with clinical signs and symptoms suspicious of a disaccharidase deficiency.

Method Name


Reporting Name

Disaccharidase Activity Panel, Ts

Specimen Type


Specimen Minimum Volume

See Specimen Required

Specimen Stability Information

Specimen Type Temperature Time Special Container
Tissue Frozen 28 days OTHER

Reject Due To

Specimens sent in formaldehyde, saline, or any supportive media
Filter paper

Clinical Information

Disaccharidases in the small intestines are responsible for the breakdown of disaccharides (double sugars) into monosaccharides (simple sugars). Patients with a deficiency of 1 or more disaccharidase enzymes can experience intolerance to foods containing complex sugars resulting in a range of gastrointestinal symptoms including diarrhea or constipation, abdominal pain and cramping, gas, bloating, and nausea. In addition, patients may experience malnutrition, weight loss, or failure to thrive. Given the nonspecificity and frequency of abdominal symptoms, misdiagnosis or a diagnostic delay of disaccharide deficiencies may occur.


Primary and secondary causes of disaccharidase deficiencies exist, and age of onset may vary from birth through adulthood. Primary causes are rare and result from genetic alterations in a variety of genes. Secondary deficiencies typically result from small intestinal mucosal damage. Treatment of both primary and secondary disaccharidase deficiencies involves dietary management. While primary deficiencies require lifelong treatment, secondary disaccharidase deficiencies may require treatment only until the intestinal lining recovers.

Reference Values

Lactase: ≥14.0 nmol/min/mg protein

Sucrase: ≥19.0 nmol/min/mg protein

Maltase: ≥70.0 nmol/min/mg protein

Palatinase: ≥6.0 nmol/min/mg protein

Glucoamylase: ≥8.0 nmol/min/mg protein


Quantitative values of lactase, sucrase, maltase, palatinase, and glucoamylase are reported. Clinical interpretation of results is provided.


This test will not distinguish between primary and secondary causes of disaccharidase deficiencies.

Clinical Reference

1. Cohen SA, Oloyede H, Gold BD, Mohammed A, Elser HE: Clinical characteristics of disaccharidase deficiencies among children undergoing upper endoscopy. J Pediatr Gastroenterol Nutr. 2018 Jun;66 Suppl 3:S56-S60

2. Semenza G, Auricchio S, Mantei N. : Small-intestinal disaccharidases. In: Valle DL, Antonarakis S, Ballabio A, Beaudet AL, Mitchell GA. eds. The Online Metabolic and Molecular Bases of Inherited Disease. McGraw Hill; 2019. Accessed August 23, 2021. Available at

Method Description

Disaccharidase activities are measured by incubating intestinal homogenates with an appropriate disaccharide substrate, which releases glucose. Glucose production is determined by a glucose oxidase reagent mixture that oxidizes glucose to produce peroxide, which reacts with phenol aminophenazone to form a red quinoneimine dye. The concentration of quinoneimine is determined spectrophotometrically and the concentration of liberated glucose is calculated from a glucose standard curve. The amount of glucose produced is proportional to the disaccharidase activity in the intestinal homogenate. Disaccharidase activities are expressed as nanomoles of glucose per minute per milligram of protein (nmol/min/mg prot).(Unpublished Mayo method)

Day(s) Performed

Monday through Friday

Report Available

3 to 5 days

Test Classification

This test was developed, and its performance characteristics determined by Mayo Clinic in a manner consistent with CLIA requirements. This test has not been cleared or approved by the US Food and Drug Administration.

CPT Code Information


LOINC Code Information

Test ID Test Order Name Order LOINC Value
DSAC Disaccharidase Activity Panel, Ts 57765-0


Result ID Test Result Name Result LOINC Value
608237 Lactase 81315-4
608238 Sucrase 30372-7
608239 Maltase 30315-6
608240 Palatinase 81314-7
608241 Glucoamylase 81322-0
608242 Interpretation 57779-1
608243 Reviewed By 18771-6