News FocusInfectious Disease

Another Disease Blights Families in Siberia's Far North

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Science  26 Apr 2002:
Vol. 296, Issue 5568, pp. 644
DOI: 10.1126/science.296.5568.644

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Virologist Lev Goldfarb was instantly suspicious when in 1969 he was shown a subset of patients with, he was told, "a certain form" of Viliuisk encephalomyelitis (VE). After learning that all the supposed VE patients were related to each other, he discovered that these people were suffering from spinocerebellar ataxia type 1, a disease passed from generation to generation through a faulty dominant gene.