Cystic fibrosis is an inherited autosomal recessive disorder in children that affects the lungs and digestive system of children. “Cystic fibrosis is the most common cause of chronic lung disease in children and young adults, and the most common fatal hereditary disorder affecting Caucasians in the US” (MedlinePlus, 2006, Para 1). In the United States some 30,000 children and adults have CF.
In the US, there is approximately 1,000 new cases of cystic fibrosis diagnosed each year and 70% of patients are diagnosed with CF by the age of two, 40% of patients with CF are 18 or older and in 2006 the median age of survival was 37 years (Cystic Fibrosis Foundation, 2007). Respiratory failure is a consequence of CF and is usually the cause of death.
Cystic fibrosis (CF) is a genetically transmitted disease in which children inherit CF from parents through genes (DNA). Genes (DNA) “also determine a lot of other characteristics including height, hair color and eye color” (Cystic Fibrosis Foundation, 2007, Para 3). According to the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation (2007, Para 3), genes are found in the nucleus of all the body’s cells and control cell function by serving as the blueprint for the production of proteins.
Chromosome 7 carries the defective gene responsible for causing CF. In order for a child to have CF, he or she must inherit two copies of the defective CF gene. One copy comes from the mother and the other from the father. If both parents carry a CF gene, the “child will have a 25% chance of inheriting both defective copies and having cystic fibrosis, a 50% chance of inheriting one defective copy and being a carrier, and a 25% chance of not having CF or carrying the gene” (Cystic Fibrosis Foundation, 2007).
This defective gene is related to a protein that is involved in the chloride ion transport in the cell membrane. Abnormally thick secretions are formed from a defect in the exocrine glands. Children with CF have a defective gene that causes the body to...