Students Cheer on Peer with Chromosome 2q24 Microdeletion Syndrome as He Heads to a Special Olympics Competition

When Alexander Barron (9) was first born, doctors told his parents that he would likely never walk. In fact, said doctors, Alexander would probably not be very independent at all due to his diagnosis of chromosome 2q24 microdeletion syndrome. But as Lucy and Mingo, Alexander’s parents, know, anything is possible with support and faith. 

Speaking with NBC Dallas-Fort Worth, the Barron family shared that their journey wasn’t always easy. They didn’t know what to expect or what Alexander would be able to accomplish. Yet he has thrived. He is nonverbal, but that has not changed a thing. Alexander loves spending time with his three younger siblings, going on walks, and competing in Special Olympics competitions! 

Recently, students at Alexander’s school cheered him on as he headed to a competition. His parents were thrilled to see the outpouring of love. And when Alexander ran on the track, his parents’ hearts overflowed with positive feelings. From being told that he might never walk to competing in races, Alexander’s actions seemed – to his family – as nothing short of a miracle. 

As Alexander continues to grow, Lucy and Mingo know that they will support him through anything – and that he will achieve whatever he sets his mind to. 

What is Chromosome 2q24 Microdeletion Syndrome?

Fewer than 1,000 people nationwide have been diagnosed with chromosome 2q24 microdeletion syndrome. The Genetic and Rare Diseases Information Center (GARD) explains that this condition is:

a chromosomal anomaly consisting of a partial long arm deletion of chromosome 2 and characterized clinically by a wide range of manifestations depending on the specific region deleted.

Chromosome 2q24 microdeletion syndrome manifests in early infancy, often shortly after birth. Some known symptoms and characteristics of this condition may, but do not always, include:

  • Microcephaly (a smaller-than-usual head size)
  • Cleft palate
  • Failure to thrive
  • Slowed growth
  • Webbed or fused toes
  • Behavioral issues
  • Eye abnormalities such as cataracts, colobomas, or microphthalmia (small eyes) 
  • Hypotonia (low/poor muscle tone)
  • Developmental delays
  • Heart and limb abnormalities
  • Autism spectrum disorder
  • Seizures

Physical, occupational, and speech therapies may benefit children with this condition. Additional supportive measures, such as hippotherapy or mobility aids, may be suggested by doctors.

Jessica Lynn

Jessica Lynn

Jessica Lynn has an educational background in writing and marketing. She firmly believes in the power of writing in amplifying voices, and looks forward to doing so for the rare disease community.

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