Researchers suggest a pathway to reverse the genetic defect of Friedreich’s ataxia

Scientists have identified a molecular mechanism that could reverse the genetic defect responsible for Friedreich’s ataxia, a neurodegenerative disease that leaves its victims with difficulty walking, a loss of sensation in the arms and legs and impaired speech. The researchers discovered that the genetic anomaly that causes the disease — the multiple repetition of a three letter DNA sequence — could potentially be reversed by enhancing a natural process that contracts the repetitive sequences in living tissue.