Cause Index

Huntington's Association of South Africa

Huntington’s disease (HD) is a neurodegenerative genetic disorder that affects muscle coordination and leads to cognitive decline and dementia. It typically becomes noticeable in middle age. HD is the most common genetic cause of abnormal involuntary writhing movements called chorea, and indeed the condition used to be called Huntington’s chorea. It is caused by an autosomal (there is an equal number of copies of the chromosome in males and females) dominant mutation on either of an individual’s two copies of a gene called Huntingtin, which means any child of an affected parent has a 50% risk of inheriting the disease. Physical symptoms of Huntington’s disease can begin at any age from infancy to old age, but usually begin between 35 and 44 years of age. About 6% of cases start before the age of 21 years; they progress faster and vary slightly.

Genetic testing can be performed at any stage of development, even before the onset of symptoms. This fact raises several ethical debates: at what age is an individual considered mature enough to choose testing, do parents have the right to have their children tested, as well as confidentiality issues and disclosure of test results. Genetic counselling has developed to inform and aid individuals considering genetic testing and has become a model for other genetically dominant diseases.

Our Vision: To have all Huntingtons sufferers and their loved-ones aware of the latest breakthroughs towards finding a cure.

The funds we raise are used for:

Our mission: To stay informed of latest developments in finding a cure for Huntingtons Disease and to disseminate this information to our community through online channels and support groups.

Maintaining our online channels (this website and Facebook Page)
Promoting and running our support groups in Cape Town and Gauteng communities
Collecting and gathering information through online associations and, in certain cases, attending conferences and/or pioneering companies.