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How are genetics involved in NMO?

Published on April 2, 2010

Benjamin Greenberg, MD:

In general, NMO is not a genetic condition. It is not passed on from parent to child or from sibling to sibling. It is rare for us to see families with more than one person affected by NMO. What we do know about the genetics of NMO, is that there are certain predispositions to autoimmune disease that patients with NMO might have. In families where somebody has been afflicted with NMO, we might see a higher rate of autoimmune thyroid disease or lupus or Sjogren’s, but it’s rare for us to see other family members affected by NMO. In general, we reassure our patients that this is not something they have to worry about transmitting to their children.

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