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Fragile Syndrome X

Discovery Of The Syndrome, Puzzling Inheritance Pattern, An Expanding Gene

Fragile X syndrome is one of the most common causes of inherited mental retardation. Individuals with fragile X syndrome can exhibit moderate to severe mental retardation. Additional characteristics may include autistic-like behavior, hyperactivity, mitral valve prolapse (a heart valve defect), a large head circumference, a long face with a prominent forehead and jaw, protruding ears, flat feet, hyper-extensive joints ("double-jointedness"), and, in males, enlarged testicles. Fragile X syndrome is not restricted to any ethnic group. It was the first of the so-called triplet repeat diseases to be discovered, and study of it has led to a growing understanding of DNA instability and its role in disease.

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Medicine EncyclopediaGenetics in Medicine - Part 2