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New chromosome abnormality discovered in China

XI'AN, Dec. 10 (Xinhua) -- Chinese doctors reported on Tuesday the discovery of an abnormal karyotype in human chromosome 5, the world's first such case, in northwest China's Shaanxi Province. Baoji City's maternal and child care service center diagnosed a girl with dwarfism, because of her lacking a sex chromosome and the long arm in chromosome 5 has a kink. Tang Kai, director of the center's genetics and heredity lab, said the abnormality was first of its kind seen.

Lab success: Chromosome for Down's is switched off

Gene scientists on Wednesday said that in lab-dish cells, they had found a way to switch off the rogue chromosome that causes Down's syndrome. The breakthrough opens up the tantalising goal of therapy for Down's, they said, cautioning that years of work lie ahead before this aim is reached -- if, in fact, it is attainable. Down's syndrome is the world's leading genetically caused mental disease, accounting for around one in 600 live births in the United States.
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