Diseases Diseases

Information On Jewish Genetic Diseases

Published at 12/31/2011 16:08:59

Genetic Diseases

 You might not be aware of it but it is believed that everybody is actually carrying in our body 6-8 genes that can cause diseases. But the moment you are born and your parents have in them the same disease-producing genes then you will be affected with an autosomal recessive disease or disorder. This is common in groups that encourage marriage within their own group or tribe.


What is Jewish Genetic Disease

 Information On Jewish Genetic Diseases

 These diseases are common among the people who have ancestors from the Eastern and Central Europe or have Jewish ancestry. Most of these diseases are believed to be severely incapacitating. Some of these diseases are tragically debilitating which can lead to death even during infancy or childhood.


There are a lot of known Jewish Genetic Diseases. Probably considered as most common and devastating as the many other diseases of the same type is Tay-Sachs. This disease is due to the lack of an enzyme that is needed for the breakdown of lipids and is called Hex-A. Lipids would continue to build up if there is a lack of Hex-A, which causes the destruction of the nerve cells of the brain. Then this will explain why eventually the nervous system will stop working properly.


The most common type of this disease occurs even before birth and the destruction of the nerve cells would begin. When the baby is born, the effects will be felt when he reaches six months and seizures can begin to happen.


Why This Happens

 Information On Jewish Genetic Diseases

 These disorders are said to be more common among those Ashkenazi Jews due to two main reasons.

 One reason considered to have caused this is the ‘Founder Effect’. This is coined from the idea that some of these people have come from one small group of people which are called ancestors. Those who are descendants of these small groups or these ancestors are now sharing the same genes which caused the diseases or disorders.

 Another reason attributed to these devastating diseases is one that is called ‘genetic drift’. This reason refers to a mechanism of evolution which involves the inheritance of particular genes which are enhanced by random chance.


Possible Treatments And Cure

 Due to the nature of the disorders or diseases, there is less known cure for these Jewish Genetic Diseases. But there are treatments that can help the symptoms like that of Tay-Sachs. For this disease, prescribed medicines help reduce the twitching of the muscles and the pains of the body.

 Since these diseases are due to the genes that have been passed on, the chances of curing it is not as high. For those families who have children or members that are suffering from any of these tragic disorders need all the support from the other members. Once the affected person goes through the later stages of these diseases, like the Tay-Sachs, it is going to be tough.

 That is also the reason why Tay-Sachs patients are advised to take genetic counseling before they would even think of getting married to let them know what they are getting into.



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