Hadassah

Hadassah Physician/Researchers Identify Defective Gene and Halt Paralysis of Babies’ Limbs and Vocal Cords

Friday, Dec 21 2012

Identifying the defective gene that has caused neuropathy in children of North African descent, physician/researchers at the Hadassah Medical Center have employed an experimental drug to prevent permanent paralysis of both muscle and vocal cords in four children.

The rare genetic disease, whereby erosion of the myelin (the coating on the nerves) impedes the nerves’ ability to transmit signals from the spinal cord to the muscles of the limbs, is referred to as “The Curse” by the susceptible population. Seemingly healthy babies developed paralysis after contracting a viral infection. Prof. Orly ElPeleg, head of the Department of Genetics and Metabolic Diseases, and Prof. Dror Mevorach, head of Internal Medicine B and the Center of Rheumatology Research at Hadassah Hospital-Ein Kerem, report that since all the children were of North African origin and one of the families had two children with the condition, they were able to identify the defective gene using advanced technology.

Read more in the Jerusalem Post here>>

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