Huntington's Disease

1419 Words 6 Pages
Huntington’s disease

Huntington’s disease, found within Cellular and Molecular Biology, is a fatal genetic disorder that causes progressive breakdown of nerve cells in the brain. It is a rare autosomal dominant progressive neurodegenerative disease. In this essay, Huntington’s disease will be discussed in reference to the biology behind the faulty HTT gene, the signs and symptoms associated with the disease, along with coping mechanisms and outcomes for those suffering from the disorder.

To begin, we will discuss the mutant HTT gene that causes Huntington’s disease. This was first discovered by George Huntington, a 22-year-old American doctor who began with writing a paper called On Chorea in 1872 where Huntington’s chorea (more commonly
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(UFhealth.org. HDSA 1). Today, scientists use molecular genetic approaches in order to determine precisely the number of CAG repeats present in the HTT gene. This will then accurately determine whether an individual will suffer from Huntington’s disease later in life. Since this discovery in 1993, research has been moving quickly to develop treatments and ultimately a cure. To aid in this, there are now options for genetic testing and prenatal testing to find the HTT gene and ultimately proactive ways to cope with the eventual onset of this fatal disease. With increased focus and expanding knowledge of the molecular basis of this disease, we can be confident that the collaborative efforts that led to the identification of the HTT gene and its mutations will continue.

Now let us discuss signs and symptoms associated with Huntington’s disease. While this disorder is typically adult-onset, there have been cases of the juvenile form that proves to be even more
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The caregivers are more often than not family members that take on this huge responsibility alongside a variety of doctors, social workers, rehabilitation therapists and psychologists. By discussing the biology behind the faulty HTT gene, the signs and symptoms associated with it, along with coping mechanisms and outcomes for those suffering from this disorder, we have shown that the more we understand, the more we can help. Even if you don’t know someone personally affected by this genetic disorder, there are still many ways to increase awareness in your area and even participate financially towards finding a

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