(GIST OF SCIENCE REPORTER) Huntington’s Disease

(GIST OF SCIENCE REPORTER) Huntington’s Disease


Huntington’s Disease

  • The medical genetics clinic in the Nizam’s Institute of Medical Sciences, Hyderabad, sees three or four people with Huntington’s disease. 

About Huntington’s disease (HD)

  • Huntington’s disease is a rare and incurable hereditary disorder that damages brain cells. 
  • Early signs include coordination problems and memory lapses. 
  • It happens when a gene mutation causes toxic proteins to collect in different parts of the brain. 
  • It leads to symptoms that may impact movement, behavior, and cognition.

Causes of Huntington’s disease

  • HD results from a gene mutation on chromosome 4 of huntingtin (HTT). 
  • This genetic mutation is caused by the excessive production (or trinucleotide repeats) of cytosine, adenine, and guanine (CAG). 
  • These are three building blocks of DNA 
  • Normally, CAG repeats 36 times or less.
  • But, in HD it repeats 36 times or more.
  • This change results in a longer form of the HTT protein, which is then cut into small harmful cells that could bind together. 
  • As the toxic protein accumulates in the brain, it begins to damage certain brain cells. 

Treatment for Huntington’s disease

  • HD is currently incurable. 
  • Treatment cannot reverse its progression or slow it down.
  • Medication and other therapies may help people manage some of their symptoms.



Study Material for UPSC General Studies Pre Cum Mains

Get The Gist 1 Year Subscription Online

Click Here to Download More Free Sample Material

<<Go Back To Main Page

Courtesy: Science Reporter