Rett Syndrome is the most physically disabling of the autism spectrum disorders and is diagnosed almost exclusively in girls. It is caused by a sporadic genetic mutation.
Rett Syndrome strikes randomly
- all expectant parents are at equal risk for having a child with the disorder. After a seemingly normal first year of life the brutal deterioration begins. This includes loss of speech, motor control and functional hand use; impaired cardiac, circulatory and digestive functions, seizures and Parkinsonian tremors. In spite of the severe disability, the girls enjoy social interaction and communicate through their expressive eyes and body language. They are affectionately referred to as “silent angels”.
In 2007 scientists achieved a breakthrough - Rett symptoms were completely reversed
in an animal model of the disorder.
This scientific breakthrough is among the top ten most important discoveries of 2007.
Researchers around the world currently are working on a variety of approaches to cure Rett Syndrome.
The researchers are confident that finding the cure for Rett Syndrome will substantially
Accelerate research into related neurological diseases such as autism, schizophrenia, Parkinson’s disease and more.
Shmulik Zysman, founder and chairman of the Israeli Rett Syndrome Foundation, is featured in a moving article about his experiences as a father of a daughter with Rett syndrome.
Click here to read the translated article