New Zealand genetics expert says dwarfism is genetic
New Zealand’s genetic doctor says a gene mutation causes a genetic dwarfism.
Dr David Leach said he had never seen anyone who had dwarfism or who had the mutation and said he was disappointed that there had not been more research into the disease.
“The only genetic disorder that I’ve seen with any degree of certainty is dwarfism,” Dr Leach told ABC Radio New Zealand.
“It’s the only known genetic disease that’s affected people of all ages.”
It’s one of the few disorders that’s been around since the last Ice Age.
I’ve been there,” he said. “
I’ve seen the evidence.
I’ve been there,” he said.
“People have a choice to have it or not, but to do it and to be able to do that is really important.”
The genetic gene mutation, known as CNV-13, causes a condition known as non mendelial dwarfism, which causes a person to lack the ability to grow a few centimetres.
It affects the body’s growth and can lead to a range of problems, including learning and language difficulties.
Dr Leacher said people with the mutation were very rare and most affected were those with an average height of about 5ft 4in.
“We can’t find anyone who’s been diagnosed, and there’s been no new cases,” he told Radio New Zee.
“In my experience, it’s rare.”
Dr Leache said he knew the mutation was passed on by people from one generation to the next, and he believed that there were other recessive gene mutations that could also affect the height of people.
“They’re not necessarily genetic mutations, but they’re definitely not passed on,” he added.
He said it was important to be aware of the mutation as it was causing a problem and to work out how to correct it.
Dr Lesch said people could not afford to lose their gene, and people with this mutation would need to go to an expert to have the gene removed.
“What we’re trying to do is educate people about how the gene mutation works,” he explained.
But we’re going to have to take the advice of the experts and the doctors and the other people who’ve been studying this, because we don’t have enough information.” ABC/wires