Essay by L31LAHigh School, 11th gradeA+, March 2008

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We were giving a task were we had to watch a film titled, “ Lorenzo’s oil” as well as reading an essay called, “ Life as we know it.” The film and the essay have the same theme, which are children that are born with an illness.

In the film “ Lorenzo’s oil” a little boy named Lorenzo is diagnosed with an illness known as Adrenoleukodystrophy [ALD]. This is caused when an enzyme in the body responsible for breaking down long chains of fatty acids doesn’t work well [Metabolism gene]. Since there is too many saturated fats the body isn’t able to get ride of the unwanted saturated fats, therefore the body sends these long chains of fats else were in the body. This cause the person to suffer by losing myelin over time, myelin works the same way rubber on electric wires works, the rubber is myelin a coating on nerve cells which allows the electricity in the body to pass around.

. If the myelin erodes the electricity wont be able to reach other parts of the body, which cause Lorenzo to slowly become paralyzed.

This illness is so rare it only affects about 1 in 18,000 boys; because of this the doctors weren’t able to present the Odone family with medication. The only things known to the doctors were that this disease is from a gene carried down from the mother [X chromosome] and it mostly effects little boys between the ages of 4-8, they also now that it is due to the body containing excessive amounts of fatty acids. Some of the symptoms seen in the movie are:·Blindness·Deaf·Dementia·Loss of muscle control [paralyzed]·Motionless·Seizures·And death 2 years after diagnoses·MuteLorenzo was diagnosed with this disease in 1984, about 1-2 years after he left Kenya. [I believe he...