New Down syndrome theory

accreditation

New research suggests that missing proteins in the brain - not too many genes or proteins, as previously thought - may explain symptoms of Down syndrome.

Researchers found that both humans and mice with Down syndrome have lower levels of specific protein in the brain than those who don't have the condition. But an experimental drug returned the protein levels to normal in mouse brains.

"We're talking about a paradigm-shifting idea that maybe we should look for underexpressed proteins and not overexpressed proteins in Down syndrome," study senior author Terry Elton, a professor of pharmacology at Ohio State University, said in a statement. "What this offers to the Down syndrome community is the potential for at least five new therapeutic targets to pursue."

An estimated 13 out of every 10,000 babies born in the United States has Down syndrome. Those with the condition can develop cognitive problems, difficulty with physical coordination and delayed language development. Many are also born with congenital heart defects.

With the experimental drug, "we showed that we can fix the protein abnormality in mice that model Down syndrome. But we can't undo the pathology that has already occurred," Elton said. "It's a starting point, but it appears that we have new therapeutic targets to consider."

The study was recently published in the Journal of Biological Chemistry. - (HealthDay News)

We live in a world where facts and fiction get blurred
In times of uncertainty you need journalism you can trust. For 14 free days, you can have access to a world of in-depth analyses, investigative journalism, top opinions and a range of features. Journalism strengthens democracy. Invest in the future today. Thereafter you will be billed R75 per month. You can cancel anytime and if you cancel within 14 days you won't be billed. 
Subscribe to News24
Voting Booth
What are your thoughts on the possibility of having permanent Stage 2 or 3 load shedding?
Please select an option Oops! Something went wrong, please try again later.
Results
I'll take that over constant schedule changes
13% - 1273 votes
Why are we normalising Eskom’s mess?
72% - 7118 votes
I've already found alternative ways of powering my home/business
15% - 1472 votes
Vote
Rand - Dollar
17.08
-0.2%
Rand - Pound
20.91
+0.9%
Rand - Euro
18.65
+0.5%
Rand - Aus dollar
12.09
+0.6%
Rand - Yen
0.13
-0.6%
Platinum
1,024.33
+1.3%
Palladium
1,654.15
-0.9%
Gold
1,915.76
-1.8%
Silver
23.52
-1.9%
Brent Crude
82.84
-3.2%
Top 40
73,629
-0.1%
All Share
79,802
-0.0%
Resource 10
74,686
-0.6%
Industrial 25
102,624
+0.1%
Financial 15
16,551
-0.0%
All JSE data delayed by at least 15 minutes Iress logo
Editorial feedback and complaints

Contact the public editor with feedback for our journalists, complaints, queries or suggestions about articles on News24.

LEARN MORE