Prader–Willi syndrome

HYNS Blog

Prader–Willi syndrome (PWS) is a genetic disorder due to loss of function of specific genes on chromosome 15. In newborns symptoms include weak muscles, poor feeding, and slow development. In childhood the person becomes constantly hungry which often leads to obesity and type 2 diabetes. There is also typically mild to moderate intellectual impairment and behavioral problems. Often the forehead is narrow, hands and feet small, height short, skin light in color, and they are unable to have children.

About 70% of cases occur when part of the father’s chromosome 15 is deleted. In another 25% of cases the person has two copies of chromosome 15 from their mother and none from their father. As parts of the chromosome from the mother are turned off they end up with no working copies of certain genes. PWS is not generally inherited but instead the genetic changes happen during the formation…

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