-Huntingtons (HD) is a fatal disease resulting from genetically programmed degenerations of nerve cells. The brain becomes a hostage from the mutant proteins effecting motor skills. brain function, and causing emotional disturbances.
SYMPTOMS OF HD Movement Disorders Involuntary jerking or writhing movements (chorea)
Cognitive Disorders Difficulty planning, organizing and prioritizing tasks
Involuntary, sustained contracture of muscles (dystonia)
Inability to start a task or conversation
Muscle Rigidity Difficulty with physical production of speech
Lack of impulse control
Psychiatric Disorders Feelings of sadness or unhappiness Loss of interest in normal activities Social withdrawal Insomnia or excessive sleeping
Juvenile HD Symptoms Loss of previously learned academic or physical skills Rapid, significant drop in overall school performance
HD appears on the fourth autosomal chromosome. The disease results from changes to the gene known as (Huntington) located on the short arm of chromsome four Transmission Huntingtons disease is not transmitted via the 23rd pair of chromosomes, which means that men and women can inherit and pass on Huntingtons Disease There is a 50% chance of passing on the dominant gene that is Huntingtons. If the gene is not passed on, the child has 0% chance of passing on the disease The HD gene is composed of the DNA sequence CAG (cysotineadenine-guanine), this sequence may be duplicated many times in many individuals without Huntingtons Disease, however individuals with the Disease may have 40-100 repeated CAG sequences
Sustaining Life Today New treatments have been fully tested on animals such as chimps and mice of a new type of therapeutic exploration preventing further mutation of the nerve cells for a number of months. Animals are treated with these ASOs, synthetic nucleic acids, to bind to and destroy the mutated protein that causes Huntingtons Disease. This new treatment is still in testing phases, but is a positive new breakthrough that gives new hope for sufferers of HD
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