Down Syndrome is a genetic disease, caused by an extra chromosome. This chromosome is called chromosome 21, and hence our project name. This extra chromosome causes heart defects and other diseases in the diseased and makes them have characteristic physical features like a flatter face, upward slanting eyes, a larger tongue, flat or slightly depressed nasal bridge, and low muscle tone at birth. Down Syndrome patients have 47 chromosomes instead of the normal 46. Babies also have other health problems like intestinal blockage which leads to constipation.
Down Syndrome affects 1 in every 800 children born. The older the mother, the greater the risk of chromosomal non-disjunction, leading to an extra chromosome being inherited.
Down Syndrome was discovered by Dr John Langdon Down in 1866. After that, there were more discoveries and case studies until about 100 years later when a French scientist found out it was a genetic disorder.
Today, we have many methods of prenatal diagnosis, such as Amniocentesis, Chorionic virus sampling, Ultrasonography, and Maternal alpha feto protein screening.