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Huntington's Disease News

Related terms: Huntington Chorea

Could Facial Recognition Studies in Sheep Help Understand Huntington's Disease?

Posted 8 Nov 2017 by

WEDNESDAY, Nov. 8, 2017 – If you ever find yourself in the company of sheep, don't be surprised if they seem to recognize you. Researchers trained eight sheep to identify celebrity faces from photographs. The investigators also found that the sheep could identify a picture of their handler without any training. This line of research could help improve understanding of Huntington's disease and other neurodegenerative conditions in people, according to scientists at the University of Cambridge in England. Along with dogs and monkeys, sheep are social animals that can recognize other sheep as well as familiar people, the study authors explained. However, the ability of sheep to identify faces was unclear. "Anyone who has spent time working with sheep will know that they are intelligent, individual animals who are able to recognize their handlers," said study leader Jenny Morton. "We've ... Read more

Related support groups: Diagnosis and Investigation, Huntington's Disease

Teva Announces FDA Approval of Austedo (deutetrabenazine) for the Treatment of Chorea Associated with Huntington’s Disease

Posted 3 Apr 2017 by

JERUSALEM--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Apr. 3, 2017-- Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd. (NYSE and TASE: TEVA) today announced that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved Austedo (deutetrabenazine) tablets for the treatment of chorea associated with Huntington’s disease (HD). Previously referred to by the developmental name SD-809, Austedo is the first deuterated product approved by the FDA and only the second product approved in HD. The product was previously granted Orphan Drug Designation by the FDA. A rare and fatal neurodegenerative disorder, HD affects more than 35,000 people in the United States. Chorea – involuntary, random and sudden, twisting and/or writhing movements – is one of the most striking physical manifestations of this disease and occurs in approximately 90% of patients. “Chorea is a major symptom for many living with Huntington disease. It impacts patients’ f ... Read more

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New Drug Eases Huntington's Disease Symptoms: Study

Posted 9 Jul 2016 by

THURSDAY, July 7, 2016 – An experimental drug may help control the involuntary, sudden muscle movements associated with Huntington's disease, with fewer side effects, according to the results of a small trial. "Deutetrabenazine is not yet FDA-approved, but assuming it becomes available, practicing clinicians may have another choice for their individual patients," said lead researcher Dr. Samuel Frank. He is a neurologist and instructor at Harvard Medical School in Boston. The involuntary movements associated with Huntington's disease are called chorea. Huntington's disease is a fatal genetic disorder. It causes the progressive destruction of nerve cells in the brain. Symptoms vary from person to person. People who have Huntington's lose their physical and mental abilities over 10 to 25 years. The disease has no cure, according to the Huntington's Disease Society of America (HDSA). ... Read more

Related support groups: Diagnosis and Investigation, Huntington's Disease

Synthetic Oil May Help Patients With Huntington's Disease

Posted 8 Jan 2015 by

THURSDAY, Jan. 8, 2015 – Consuming a synthetic oil may help normalize brain metabolism of people with the incurable, inherited brain disorder known as Huntington's disease, a small new study suggests. Daily doses of a triglyceride oil called triheptanoin – which 10 Huntington's patients took with meals – appeared to boost the brain's ability to use energy, researchers said. The scientists also noted improvements in movement and motor skills after one month of therapy. Huntington's is a fatal disease causing the progressive breakdown of nerve cells in the brain. Both the study's author and an outside expert cautioned that the new findings are preliminary and need to be validated in larger studies. Triheptanoin oil "can cross the blood-brain barrier and improve the brain energy deficit" common in Huntington's patients, said study author Dr. Fanny Mochel, an associate professor of ... Read more

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Mouse Study May Shed Light on Huntington's Disease

Posted 26 Mar 2014 by

WEDNESDAY, March 26, 2014 – An amino acid deficiency might be responsible for the brain degeneration that occurs in people with Huntington's disease, research in mice suggests. Huntington's is an incurable inherited brain disease. Symptoms typically begin in middle age and include movement and balance problems. Patients can eventually lose the ability to walk, talk and swallow. Patients with Huntington's have degeneration in up to 90 percent of a brain structure called the corpus striatum, which plays a role in mood, movement and thinking. Although the genetic mutation that causes Huntington's has long been known, the specific cause of this brain degeneration has not been identified, according to a Johns Hopkins University news release. In the new study, Johns Hopkins researchers discovered that mice that couldn't make the amino acid cysteine had widespread deterioration in the corpus ... Read more

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Scientists Use Stem Cells to Mimic Huntington's Disease

Posted 6 Jul 2012 by

FRIDAY, July 6 – Scientists have found a way to use stem cell technology to study Huntington's disease, a progressive inherited brain disorder that causes lack of muscle control, psychiatric disorders, dementia and ultimately death. The disease is currently incurable. Working with an international consortium, researchers from Johns Hopkins in Baltimore cultured skin cells from a young person with a severe, early onset form of the disease. They used these cells to create stem cells, which were turned into neurons that degenerated rapidly, just as they do in people with Huntington's. "These [Huntington's disease] cells acted just as we were hoping," one of the study's lead researchers, Dr. Christopher Ross, director of the Baltimore Huntington's Disease Center, said in a Johns Hopkins news release. "A lot of people said, 'You'll never be able to get a model in a dish of a human ... Read more

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Huntington's Disease Linked to Reduced Cancer Risk in Study

Posted 11 Apr 2012 by

WEDNESDAY, April 11 – People who have Huntington's disease are much less likely to develop cancer than people without the inherited disorder, according to a new study that suggests the diseases share a common genetic mechanism. The Swedish researchers found that those with Huntington's had a 53 percent lower risk of being diagnosed with cancer compared to the general population. Besides Huntington's disease, the lower cancer risk applies to the other eight rare neurodegenerative disorders known as polyglutamine (polyQ) diseases. Those diseases, which result in the progressive degeneration of neurons involved in motor control, include spinobulbar muscular atrophy (also known as Kennedy's disease); dentatorubral-pallidoluysian atrophy; and six types of spinocerebellar ataxia. From 1969 through 2008, the researchers identified 1,510 patients with Huntington's disease; 471 people with ... Read more

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New Drug Shows Promise Against Huntington's Disease

Posted 8 Nov 2011 by

MONDAY, Nov. 7 – An investigational drug called pridopidine seems an effective and safe treatment for people with the progressive movement disorder Huntington's disease, researchers report. Huntington's patients have an imbalance in the signaling chemical dopamine. The new drug stabilizes dopamine signaling in areas of the brain that control movement and coordination. According to the study authors, this is the first drug shown to improve patients' loss of ability to move their muscles voluntarily. The only drug currently approved for Huntington's is tetrabenazine, which treats only involuntary movements and can cause serious side effects. The results of the phase 3 clinical trial, conducted by Spanish researchers led by Dr. Justo Garcia de Yebenes, of the department of neurology, Hospital Ramon y Cajal in Madrid, appear in the Nov. 7 online edition of The Lancet Neurology. The study ... Read more

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New Drugs Eyed for Huntington's Disease

Posted 28 Jul 2010 by

WEDNESDAY, July 28 – Enzymes associated with Huntington's disease may offer targets for the development of new drugs to treat the neurodegenerative disease, a new study suggests. These enzymes, called matrix metalloproteinases(MMPs), play a role in the breakdown of proteins that modify the production of toxic fragments that contribute to Huntington's disease, said researchers at the Buck Institute for Age Research in California. Previous research has shown that MMPs respond to new cancer drugs currently under development. "We've found a target that has known drugs for cancer treatment that could possibly have significance for HD," Dr. Lisa Ellerby said in a Buck Institute news release. "MMPs are also involved in stroke, inflammation and many neurological processes; we expect a lot of scientific attention to now be focused on this important class of proteases." The study appears in the ... Read more

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Drug May Ease Cognitive Effects of Huntington's

Posted 9 Feb 2010 by

TUESDAY, Feb. 9 – An experimental drug may improve thinking, learning and memory skills in people with Huntington's disease, an inherited neurodegenerative disorder, new research says. Huntington's affects movement, behavior and cognitive abilities, and people with the disease usually die within 10 to 30 years of its onset. Cognitive problems begin early in the disease and increase as Huntington's progresses, leading to the inability to work or perform normal daily activities. Currently, the only approved therapy for Huntington's is tetrabenazine, which treats movement problems but does not prevent cognitive decline or change the course of the disease. In the new study, researchers assessed the safety and tolerability of a new drug with the proposed generic name latrepirdine, in people with mild to moderate Huntington's disease. The drug stabilizes and improves the function of ... Read more

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Compounds Identified That Might Treat Nerve Diseases

Posted 19 Jan 2010 by

TUESDAY, Jan. 19 – Researchers report that they've developed a new way to find compounds that could become treatments for degenerative nerve disorders such as Alzheimer's, Huntington's and Parkinson's diseases. The diseases cause proteins in nerve cells known as neurons to "misfold." In the new research, scientists say they've found molecules that play a role in the body's efforts to "chaperone" the molecules that fix the broken proteins. The scientists studied one of the molecules and used rat neurons to show that it does indeed serve as a protective chaperone. Research in fruit flies showed the same thing. Researchers say the study could lead to treatments that manipulate the chaperone molecules, leading to repair of the broken proteins. "We found a creative way to identify new molecules that can activate the body's natural protein-folding machinery," senior author Dennis J. Thiele, ... Read more

Related support groups: Parkinson's Disease, Alzheimer's Disease, Huntington's Disease

Scientists Find Molecular Switch Related to Huntington's

Posted 25 Dec 2009 by

THURSDAY, Dec. 24 – Researchers are reporting that they've discovered a molecular switch that appears to play a role in whether Huntington's disease develops in mice. An estimated one out of every 10,000 Americans suffer from Huntington's disease, which is hereditary and disrupts a person's ability to walk, talk, think clearly and even swallow. There's currently no way to prevent the disease, which typically leads to death within 10 years of diagnosis, or to keep it from worsening, the study authors noted. Scientists have found that a mutation in a protein called huntingtin causes the disease to develop. But there's still plenty of mystery about how that happens. "It's unclear how the mutant protein causes age-related and progressive loss of brain cells in patients with Huntington's disease," X. William Yang, an associate professor of psychiatry and biobehavioral sciences at the Semel ... Read more

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