Tay-Sachs Disease

Learn More About the Three Onset Levels of Tay-Sachs Disease.

The Three Onset Levels of
Tay-Sachs Disease

Tay-Sachs disease exists on a spectrum with three onset levels. When diagnosing the disease, healthcare providers will determine the onset level based on the age of the affected individual when symptoms first appear.

  • Infantile
    Symptoms typically appear between the ages of 3–6 months of age.

  • Juvenile
    Symptoms typically appear between the ages of 2–5 years of age.

  • Late Onset
    Symptoms typically appear in adolescence and into adulthood.

What is Tay-Sachs Disease?

Tay-Sachs disease is an autosomal recessive genetic disorder where the absence of an enzyme called beta-hexosaminidase A (HexA) causes fatty substances to build up in the brain and nerve cells, which damages the brain and spinal cord.

You might see Tay-Sachs referred to as “GM2 gangliosidosis” or “GM2” in scientific literature.

There is currently no cure for Tay-Sachs, but there are treatments and therapies to manage symptoms and maintain a baseline of symptoms for as long as possible.


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