Huntington’s Disease: The Singer Must Dance


Todd T. Eckdahl

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This book describes Huntington’s disease (HD), a rare neurodegenerative genetic disorder that causes a triad of motor, cognitive, and psychiatric/behavioral symptoms and affects about 6 in 100,000 people worldwide. Although the age of onset of HD symptoms is usually 30 to 50 years, a rare juvenileonset form of HD also occurs. The autosomal dominant pattern of inheritance followed by HD is illustrated in the book with pedigree scenarios.

The author details how mutations in the HTT gene on chromosome 4 cause HD and how a genetic test can be used by people who might have inherited adult-onset HD and couples who are at risk for passing HD on to their children. The book describes the available treatments for HD and presents new approaches such as experimental drugs, stem cell therapy, and gene therapy that might be able to effectively treat or even cure HD.

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Todd T. Eckdahl

Todd T. Eckdahl

Dr. Todd T. Eckdahl earned a BS in chemistry from the University Minnesota, Duluth, and a PhD in molecular genetics from Purdue University. He is currently professor of biology at Missouri Western State University, where he teaches genetics and conducts research in collaboration with undergraduate students that is supported by the National Science Foundation. Dr. Eckdahl has published over 40 articles in professional journals that contribute to molecular genetics and synthetic biology research and to undergraduate science education.