Researchers at UC Davis have developed a new method that can reduce the radiation dose delivered
to a child during computed tomography (CT) imaging by as much as 80 percent. The new technique, reported
in the journal Radiology, allows radiologists to tailor thage 50 and results in tremors, balance problems
and dementia that become increasingly severe with age.
Known as fragile X-associated tremor/ataxia syndrome, or FXTAS, the disorder affects older men who are
carriers of a premutation in the same gene that causes fragile X syndrome, the most common cause of inherited
mental retardation. Nearly 1 in 800 men in the general population carries this premutation, and UC Davis
research suggests that as many as 30 percent of carriers roughly 1 in 3,000 men may develop FXTAS
later in life.
The research was led by the husband-wife team of Paul and Randi Hagerman. Paul is a UC Davis professor
of biological chem istry. Randi is medical director of the UC Davis M.I.N.D. Institute and a professor
of pediatrics. The discovery was published in the Jan. 28 issue of the Journal of the American Medical