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How does muscular dystrophy become inherited as an X-linked disorder?

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Males carry one X chromosome and one Y chromosome. Females carry two X chromosomes. For a female to become affected by muscular dystrophy, both of her X chromosomes would have to carry the defective gene -- an extremely rare occurrence, since her mother would have to be a carrier (one defective X chromosome) and her father would have to have muscular dystrophy (since men carry just one X chromosome, the other is a Y chromosome).

A female who carries the defective X chromosome can pass the disease to her son (whose other chromosome is a Y, from the father).

A few muscular dystrophies aren't inherited at all and occur because of a new gene abnormality or mutation.

SOURCES: 

Nemours Foundation. 

Muscular Dystrophy Association. 

National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases.

Reviewed by Nayana Ambardekar on March 31, 2019

SOURCES: 

Nemours Foundation. 

Muscular Dystrophy Association. 

National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases.

Reviewed by Nayana Ambardekar on March 31, 2019

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