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An "Expression of Hope" from the afflicted.

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"I am ten years old and have MPS I. My painting of a dragon expresses the courage that everyone needs when they have MPS." Artist Nicklas Harkins describes his life with Mucopolysaccharidosis I and his strength, along with the stories of others living with lysosomal storage disorders (LSDs), through a collection of inspiring pieces of art entitled "Expression of Hope."

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Lysosomal storage disorders are a group of approximately 50 inherited genetic disorders, sharing common clinical and biochemical characteristics. Individually, each disease is rare but, as a group, the prevalence of LSDs has been estimated from one in 5,000 to one in 7,000 individuals.

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People with LSDs either are lacking--or in short supply of--particular enzymes that are found in the lysosome (a compartment of the cell) that contains various digestive enzymes as well as acidic materials. Because of this, molecules that are meant to be broken down by the missing enzymes build up within the lysosome and can prevent the cell from working properly. Most LSDs are progressive and life threatening.

Sponsored by the biotechnology company Genzyme, the artwork featured in "Expression of Hope" were created as a means to generate awareness and understanding of the strength and courage of thousands of people worldwide living with LSDs. After the exhibition closes March 2 at the National Museum of Health and Medicine, Washington, D.C., its contents will go on permanent display at Genzyme's facility in Massachusetts.

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Title Annotation:exhibition of stories and art of people with Lysosomal Storage Disorders
Publication:USA Today (Magazine)
Article Type:Brief article
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Feb 1, 2008
Words:245
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