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What is Leber's hereditary optic neuropathy (LHON)?
LHON causes a painless loss of central vision and usually occurs when someone with the condition is between 12 and 30 years old.
What is mitochondrial inheritance?
The normal 46 chromosomes in our body are contained in the center of the cell, which is called the nucleus. Mitochondria are structures in the cell that are located outside of the nucleus in the cytoplasm and also contain genes that are separate from the ones in the nucleus.
Unlike nuclear genes, which are inherited from both parents, mitochondrial genes are inherited only from the mother. If there is a mutation in a mitochondrial gene, it’s passed from a mother to all of her children; sons won’t pass it on, but daughters will pass it on to all of their children.
The first human disease that was associated with a mutation in mitochondrial DNA is called Leber's Hereditary Optic Neuropathy, or LHON.
We are grateful to have been ranked #1 on U.S. News & World Report's list of the best children's hospitals in the nation for the third year in a row, an honor we could not have achieved without the patients and families who inspire us to do our very best for them. Thanks to you, Boston Children's is a place where we can write the greatest children's stories ever told.”