Genetic causes of cerebral palsy uncovered through whole-genome sequencing

A Canadian-led study has identified genes which may be partially responsible for the development of cerebral palsy 

From the website below:

Cerebral palsy (CP), a condition that affects the development of motor skills in children, is the most common childhood-onset physical disability. CP can have different causes, such as infections, injuries, or lack of oxygen before or during birth, but the genetic contributors to CP have remained largely unknown. 

Novel research from scientists at The Hospital for Sick Children (SickKids), the Research Institute of the McGill University Health Centre (RI-MUHC) and Holland Bloorview Kids Rehabilitation Hospital, who led a multi-site Canadian project, provides a more detailed look into the genetic causes of the condition. Their findings suggest the existence of many genetic variants contributing to CP, which may inform future diagnosis and treatment. 

“For 100 years cerebral palsy was mostly thought to be the result of entirely environmental factors during birth,” says study co-lead Dr. Stephen Scherer, Chief of Research and Senior Scientist in the Genetics & Genome Biology program at SickKids and Director of The Centre for Applied Genomics. “Now that we have a better understanding into the complex relationship between cerebral palsy’s genetic and environmental factors, we hope we can improve care for these children.” 


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