It is likely many of us have heard of Progeria, which is a disease that accelerates aging and will typically have a child locked in the body of a geriatric.
Now another strange and baffling condition, which doctors are calling Syndrome X, is seen in Brooke Greenberg, a 17 year old girl in terms of her chronological age, but has the body and mentality of a one year old.
Researchers are now saying that her condition and failure to develop may explain the defects in genes that are responsible for the aging process in general.
They are hopeful that examining the DNA of Brooke, they will be able to develop new therapies for age related disease and also help to explain some of the mysteries that surround age and development.
Brooke, who appeared to have been born normal, is said to have a mutation in the genes that control her ageing and development so that she appears to have been frozen in time.
However, before she turned two, there were several medical emergencies and it became clear to her parents that she was not developing as she should be.
Different parts of her body seemed out of synch and appeared to develop in an uncoordinated manner. She can recognize voices and sounds but cannot speak; her bones are that of a 10 year old, but she still has her milk teeth.
Researchers are hopeful that Brooke’s condition will eventually help to find solutions for conditions such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease.