Source Pravda.Ru

Scientists switch off chromosome copy responsible for Down's syndrome

Scientists in the United States used a naturally occurring "off switch" to turn off the chromosome copy which is responsible for Down's syndrome, reports Channel 4 News.

Scientists at UMass Medical School have successfully shown that a naturally occurring X chromosome "off switch" can be rerouted to neutralize the extra chromosome responsible for trisomy 21 or Down syndrome, a genetic disorder characterized by cognitive impairment, says Times of India.

This discovery means that there is a strong basis from which to develop new treatments using this same concept of shutting down the extra chromosome in trisomy 21. For people currently living with Down syndrome, possible new treatments could help to alleviate intellectual and sensory impairments. Additionally, possible new prenatal treatments for Down syndrome fetuses derived from these findings could normalize brain development in the womb. This discovery also opens up new insight into the possibility of "chromosome treatment," where drugs and procedures can be designed to treat the genetic root of genetic disorders.This is truly a huge victory for health science, according to PolicyMic.