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The DYT1 mutation is rare, occurring in no more than I in 5,000 people in the United States.
Future research will involve rodents with and without mutated DYT1, Ozelius says.
When mutant torsinA, which causes DYT1 dystonia, is present, it interferes with this process, making cells unusually vulnerable to cellular stress that may compromise neuronal function.
Understanding how this works in DYT1 dystonia may suddenly open up new possibilities for designing dystonia-specific treatments.