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2 Genes Linked to Embryonic Brain Impairment in Down’s Syndrome

Posted: July 22, 2010 at 8:19 am


Down's syndrome (DS) is an incurable, heritable disorder affecting an estimated 400,000 people in the U.S. It is characterized by impaired cognitive ability and abnormal physical growth. Whereas scientists have long known that DS is caused by inheriting an extra copy of all or part of chromosome 21 , the underlying cause of the brain defects common in Down's patients has not been fully gleaned.

Now, a collaborative team of scientists working with a mouse model of DS has discovered that just two genes are responsible for the majority of the brain abnormalities present in their animals. The scientists hope that their findings will help scientists understand brain defects in humans with the disorder as well as aid in the development of drugs to treat the cognitive impairment in Down's patients.

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Genetic disorder - Health - Conditions and Diseases - Gene - Brain

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