Medical Genetics

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Genetic disease knows no boundaries by age, sex, race, or nationality. According to a study published in the American Journal of Human Genetics, an underlying disorder with a significant genetic component was found in 71 percent of pediatric hospitalizations. The vast majority of underlying chronic disorders in children included in this study were either clearly genetic or had a genetic susceptibility.

Medical genetics is the branch of medicine concerned with how hereditary and genetic factors play a role in causing a disease, birth defect, or inherited susceptibility to a health problem.

In 1990, the Human Genome Project began mapping the location of all the genes on the chromosomes. Today, with the knowledge gained from the Project, scientists are discovering how genetic diseases are caused, how to possibly treat them, and, ultimately, prevent them.

UT Southwestern Medical Center is a leader in genetics research and treatment of genetic disorders. Our Pediatric Genetics and Metabolism Division offers consultation, evaluation, counseling, and treatment for inherited diseases, as well as known or suspected genetic conditions.

New mom treated by UT Southwestern overcomes rare genetic disease

Becoming a mother was her greatest joy, but just days after giving birth to her daughter, Jessica Hitt’s mental state was severely affected by a rare genetic disorder. She became delirious, agitated, and hysterical. UT Southwestern researchers and physicians were able to quickly diagnose and treat the disease, and now she’s looking forward to expanding her family.