What are the types of genetic diseases? A genetic disease is referred to as an illness which is caused by an abnormality in chromosomes or genes. This is commonly a condition which is already present even before the time of birth. Mostly, the number of those affected by a genetic disease is very scarce and can affect only a single individual for every thousands or for every millions. This type of disease may be heritable or not. This disease may be taken from the parents’ genes, but some may be caused by DNA changes or new mutations in one gene or a group of such genes. Such abnormalities can be major or trivial. There are various types of genetic diseases that can affect randomly or may be associated with environmental exposures. More often than not the risks of having a newborn with a certain genetic defect are higher in cases when the parents are blood-related, the ultrasound shows some abnormalities on the fetus, there is an abnormality in one parent’s chromosomes, history of genetic disorders in a family, and genetic disorder already exists in another child in the family. The types of genetic diseases are known as multifactorial inheritance, mitochondrial inhereitance, single cell inheritance, chromosomal inheritance and teratogenic.
Multifactorial Inheritance- This is one of the types of genetic diseases which results due to more than a single mutation or does not follow an abnormality pattern in chromosomes. Additionally, environmental factors or several problems can cause it. A defect in the neural tube (a defect in the brain or spine),cleft palate or cleft lip, heart defects, arthritis, cancer, diabetes, and Alzheimer’s disease are some of the examples of this type. Inherited traits like height, eye color and skin color are associated with this type of disorder as well.
Mitochondrial Inheritance- This is one of the types of genetic diseases which results from a mutation in the DNA called nonchromosomal mitochondria. Mitochondrial encephalopathy (a kind of dementia), Leber’s optic atrophy (a kind of a certain eye disease), and myoclonus epilepsy are examples of this type of genetic disorder.
Single Cell Inheritance- Some types of genetic diseases include single cell inheritance or otherwise called Mendelian inheritance owing to Gregor Mendel’s pioneer work in genetics. This is one of the types of genetic diseases in which only a single cell causes an abnormality or defect. This type basically has a greater inheritance risk. Also called as monogenetic disorder, single inheritance approximately affects a single birth for every 200 births. Cystic fibrosis, Marfan syndrome, achondroplasia, sickle sick anemia, Tay Sachs disease, hemophilia and Duchene muscular dystrophy are some of its examples.
Chromosomal Abnormalities- Some types of genetic diseases also include chromosomal abnormalities which can occur without any family history or can be taken from a parent. Examples of such types of genetic diseases are Turner syndrome, Down syndrome, Klinefelter syndrome, and cri du chat syndrome.
Teratogenic- This is one of the types of genetic diseases which is associated with certain substances that can cause abnormalities in birth. Birth defects usually occur when there is an exposure of teratogens in the trimester stage of pregnancy. Infections like rubella, lead, radiation exposure at a high degree, alcohol, and certain medications are examples of teratogens.