The causes of different additonal needs - Cystic fibrosis, Down's syndrome and Meningitits.

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The causes of additional needs

Cystic fibrosis

Cystic fibrosis is a genetic condition which is caused by the faulty CFTR gene which is on chromosome 7. This faulty gene blocks the normal workings of a protein which then allows too much salt and not enough water into the cells. This then builds up thick, sticky mucus in the tubes and passageways in the body which cause blockages to occur which then damage the lungs, digestive system and other organs. This then results in inflammation and swelling and infections.

This faulty gene has to be inherited by both parents to develop cystic fibrosis, but it is still a relatively common genetic condition as it is estimated that 1 person in every 25 carries the faulty CFTR gene.

When both parents’ carries the gene there is a one in four chance that the child will not inherit either of the faulty genes and will not be a carrier of the condition. There’s also a one in two chance that the child will inherit only one of the faulty genes from one of their parents instead of both of them which would mean that they would not have cystic fibrosis, but they would be a carrier of the condition. Finally, there is also a one in four chance that the child will inherit both copies of the faulty gene which would mean that the child would have cystic fibrosis.

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Downs syndrome

The cause of Down syndrome is that it is a genetic condition which occurs when an extra copy of chromosome 21 is present. Chromosome 21 causes physical and developmental characteristics associated with Down syndrome which is due to the additional genetic material. Chromosomes are blocks of DNA which contain a range of detailed genetic instructions which control a number of factors within the human body such as how the body’s cells develop, eye-colour and the sex of a baby. There are usually 46 chromosomes within a cell and 23 are inherited from the mother and 23 from ...

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