Huntington's Disease News

Huntington’s disease is a rare genetic disorder that impacts the brain. It is caused by a defective gene, and the defect is typically passed along through the family as a hereditary disorder.

Individuals with Huntington’s disease often develop the symptoms in their middle ages. They may begin life with normal mental functions but then begin to show the symptoms of the disease between the ages of 30 and 50. However, the symptoms of Huntington’s disease have also been seen in patients as young as two and as old as 80.

Symptoms of Huntington’s Disease

When Huntington’s disease begins to exhibit symptoms, the telltale signs are unpredictable and uncontrolled muscle movements. This impacts the legs, arms, upper body, head and face. This is accompanied by other mental symptoms, as well, including problems with thinking and reasoning, memory, judgment and concentration. Individuals with Huntington’s disease often have related problems that impact their mood, including anxiety, irritability, anger and even depression.

Treatment

Huntington’s disease is a difficult diagnosis both for the individual and loved ones. As the disease progresses, it will pass through an “early stage,” “middle stage” and “late stage” that include gradually worsening symptoms. As the disease worsens over time and reaches “late stage,” it has often evolved to the point where the individual becomes completely dependent on others and eventually dies from complications of the disease.

Though it cannot be cured, there are a number of medications that are recommended to help with the different symptoms of the disease. The three areas that health care providers often try to treat with medications are the involuntary movements, irritability and obsessive-compulsive tendencies. Related problems such as anxiety or depression should also be treated to help the individual live the best life possible with Huntington’s disease.

SOURCES: Alzheimer’s Association; Huntington’s Disease Society of America.

Date Posted
Article Title
11/8/2017
7/7/2016
New Drug Eases Huntington's Disease Symptoms: Study

Experimental med seems to have fewer side effects than current treatment, researcher says

1/8/2015
Synthetic Oil May Help Patients With Huntington's Disease

Preliminary research shows improvement in brain response

9/11/2014
Scientists Unlock a Key to Cell Stress

Stressed cells can halt protein production, which could could shed light on diseases like Alzheimer's and ALS

3/26/2014
Mouse Study May Shed Light on Huntington's Disease

The hereditary brain disease can destroy patients' ability to walk, talk and swallow

3/7/2013
Human Brain Cells Used to Make Mice Smarter

Findings could advance research on conditions such as Parkinson's and Alzheimer's, experts say

7/6/2012
Scientists Use Stem Cells to Mimic Huntington's Disease

Discovery marks a step closer to a cure, researchers say

4/12/2012
Huntington's Disease Linked to Reduced Cancer Risk in Study

Findings suggest shared genetic mechanism, researchers say

11/8/2011
New Drug Shows Promise Against Huntington's Disease

Study suggests pridopidine eases symptoms, but doesn't attack origins of the disease

7/28/2010
New Drugs Eyed for Huntington's Disease

But tests on mice needed first, researchers say

2/9/2010
Drug May Ease Cognitive Effects of Huntington's

Small study reports improvement in thinking skills

1/19/2010
Compounds Identified That Might Treat Nerve Diseases

Researchers aim to 'chaperone' proteins involved in diseases like Parkinson's

12/24/2009
Scientists Find Molecular Switch Related to Huntington's

Mouse study holds promise for humans with hereditary disease

6/15/2009
Why Huntington's Shows Up in Midlife

Onset of symptoms may be tied to weakening of neurons, study finds

6/12/2009
People With Huntington's Report Discrimination

Businesses, the public, even families are involved, study finds

6/4/2009
Discovery Sheds Light on Huntington's Disease

Researchers identify protein that could lead to treatment or prevention

4/3/2009
Scientists Uncover New Weapon Against Huntington's

Treatment could save brain cells from ravages of neurodegenerative disease

9/25/2008
Scientists ID Compounds That Prevent Brain Nerve Damage

Finding could help develop new drugs to treat Alzheimer's, Parkinson's diseases

9/16/2008
Compound Reverses Huntington's Symptoms in Mice

Treatment slowed reduction of brain size, improved motor functioning, study finds

8/15/2008
First Treatment Sanctioned for Chorea in Huntington's Patients

The involuntary jerky movements that accompany the disease

4/15/2008
Most Early-Onset Dementia Not Alzheimer's

Other neurodegenerative, autoimmune diseases are more often cause, study finds

10/9/2007
Molecule Promising Against Huntington's Disease

C2-8 battles the brain illness, mouse study shows

7/25/2007
Drug May Shield Brain Cells From Huntington's Disease

Dopamine-reducing med shows promise in mice

5/11/2007
Scientists ID Proteins Implicated in Huntington's Disease

Finding may spur treatments for fatal nervous system disorder

12/8/2006
Huntington's Disease Linked to High Brain Cholesterol

Progressive neurological illness may stem from lipid overdelivery

7/28/2006
Potential Drug Target Found to Treat Huntington's Disease

Enzyme critical to maintenance of cell health could hold key, study finds

10/15/2001
Rewriting the Book on Huntington's Disease

Buildup of mutant protein turns off normal protein, says study