Learn About MELAS Syndrome

What is the definition of MELAS Syndrome?

Mitochondrial encephalomyopathy, lactic acidosis, and stroke-like episodes (MELAS) is a condition that affects many of the body's systems, particularly the brain and nervous system (encephalo-) and muscles (myopathy). The signs and symptoms of this disorder most often appear in childhood following a period of normal development, although they can begin at any age. Early symptoms may include muscle weakness and pain, recurrent headaches, loss of appetite, vomiting, and seizures. Most affected individuals experience stroke-like episodes beginning before age 40. These episodes often involve temporary muscle weakness on one side of the body (hemiparesis), altered consciousness, vision abnormalities, seizures, and severe headaches resembling migraines. Repeated stroke-like episodes can progressively damage the brain, leading to vision loss, problems with movement, and a loss of intellectual function (dementia).

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What are the causes of MELAS Syndrome?

MELAS can result from mutations in one of several genes, including MT-ND1, MT-ND5, MT-TH, MT-TL1, and MT-TV. These genes are found in the DNA of cellular structures called mitochondria, which convert the energy from food into a form that cells can use. Although most DNA is packaged in chromosomes within the nucleus, mitochondria also have a small amount of their own DNA, known as mitochondrial DNA or mtDNA.

How prevalent is MELAS Syndrome?

The exact incidence of MELAS is unknown. It is one of the more common conditions in a group known as mitochondrial diseases. Together, mitochondrial diseases occur in about 1 in 4,000 people.

Is MELAS Syndrome an inherited disorder?

This condition is inherited in a mitochondrial pattern, which is also known as maternal inheritance. This pattern of inheritance applies to genes contained in mtDNA. Because egg cells, but not sperm cells, contribute mitochondria to the developing embryo, children can only inherit disorders resulting from mtDNA mutations from their mother. These disorders can appear in every generation of a family and can affect both males and females, but fathers do not pass traits associated with changes in mtDNA to their children.

Who are the top MELAS Syndrome Local Doctors?
Highly rated in

NewYork-Presbyterian Healthcare System

Columbia University Department Of Neurological Surgery

710 W 168th St 
New York, NY 10032

Michio Hirano is a Neurologist in New York, New York. Dr. Hirano has been practicing medicine for over 36 years and is rated as an Elite doctor by MediFind in the treatment of MELAS Syndrome. He is also highly rated in 32 other conditions, according to our data. His top areas of expertise are MELAS Syndrome, Mitochondrial Neurogastrointestinal Encephalopathy Disease, Progressive External Ophthalmoplegia, and Oculopharyngeal Muscular Dystrophy. He is licensed to treat patients in New York.

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Division Of Clinical Genetics And Metabolic Disorders

Sharjah, SH, AE 

Ayman Hattab-El is in Sharjah, United Arab Emirates. Hattab-El is rated as an Elite expert by MediFind in the treatment of MELAS Syndrome. He is also highly rated in 19 other conditions, according to our data. His top areas of expertise are MELAS Syndrome, Neu Laxova Syndrome, Lactic Acidosis, and Primary Carnitine Deficiency.

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Kurume University School Of Medicine

Kurume, JP 83000

Yasutoshi Koga is in Kurume, Japan. Koga is rated as an Elite expert by MediFind in the treatment of MELAS Syndrome. They are also highly rated in 4 other conditions, according to our data. Their top areas of expertise are MELAS Syndrome, Pyruvate Decarboxylase Deficiency, Coenzyme Q Cytochrome C Reductase Deficiency, and Precocious Puberty.

What are the latest MELAS Syndrome Clinical Trials?
A Phase IIb Open-label, Multi-centre, Extension Study to Explore the Long-term Safety and Efficacy of KH176 in Subjects With a Genetically Confirmed Mitochondrial DNA tRNALeu(UUR) m.3243A>G Mutation Who Have Completed the KHENERGYZE Study KH176-202.
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An Open-Label, Safety Study for Previously Treated Vatiquinone (PTC743) Participants With Inherited Mitochondrial Disease
Who are the sources who wrote this article ?

Published Date:updated Last, December

Published By: National Institutes of Health

What are the Latest Advances for MELAS Syndrome?
Immunonutrition for the acute treatment of MELAS syndrome.
Kearns-Sayre syndrome with a novel large-scale deletion: a case report.
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Stroke and stroke-like episodes in inborn errors of metabolism: Pathophysiological and clinical implications.