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Julie Cini

Spinal Muscular Atrophy Association of Australia I

Contact Information:

Hallam, Victoria 3803

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Business that would like to partner with a charity

About My Business:


SMA is a degenerative motor neuron disease. SMA affects infants, children and adults worldwide. It is suggested that incidence of SMA occurs one in 10,000 births. It is a complex disease affecting individuals across the lifespan for which to date, there is no known cure. SMA is a genetic condition whereby the nerves of the spinal cord (anterior horn cells) deteriorate, atrophy (waste away) and eventually die. Put simply, SMA not only wastes away the muscles you see like arms and legs, but internal muscles used for coughing, swallowing and breathing. With SMA, the nerve cells of the spinal cord do not have the genetic programming that enables them to send messages effectively or efficiently to the muscles surrounding the spinal cord. Because the muscles are not stimulated, they become weak and the muscle cells “atrophy”, or die from lack of use. Muscle weakness becomes worse over time until the muscles no longer respond. Muscles closest to the trunk (shoulders, hips and back) are often the most severely affected, with leg weakness usually more pronounced than in the arms.

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