SENATE RESOLUTION 227--DESIGNATING SEPTEMBER 2009 AS ``TAY-SACHS AWARENESS MONTH''; Congressional Record Vol. 155, No. 116
(Senate - July 29, 2009)

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   SENATE RESOLUTION 227--DESIGNATING SEPTEMBER 2009 AS ``TAY-SACHS 
                           AWARENESS MONTH''

  Mr. BROWN submitted the following resolution; which was referred to 
the Committee on the Judiciary:

                              S. Res. 227

       Whereas Tay-Sachs disease is a rare, genetic disorder that 
     causes destruction of nerve cells in the brain and spinal 
     cord due to the poor functioning of an enzyme called 
     hexosaminidase A;
       Whereas there is no proven treatment or cure for Tay-Sachs 
     disease and the disease is always fatal in children;
       Whereas the disorder was named after Warren Tay, an 
     ophthalmologist from the United Kingdom, and Bernard Sachs, a 
     neurologist from the United States, both of whom contributed 
     to the discovery of the disease in the 1880s;
       Whereas Tay-Sachs disease often affects families with no 
     prior history of the disease;
       Whereas approximately 1 in 27 Ashkenazi Jews, 1 in 30 
     Louisianan Cajuns, 1 in 30 French Canadians, 1 in 50 Irish 
     Americans, and 1 in every 250 people are carriers of Tay-
     Sachs disease, which means approximately 1,500,000 people in 
     the United States are carriers;
       Whereas unaffected carriers of the disease possess the 
     recessive gene that can trigger the disease in future 
     generations;
       Whereas, if both parents of a child are carriers of Tay-
     Sachs disease, there is a 1 in 4 chance that the child will 
     develop Tay-Sachs disease;
       Whereas a simple and inexpensive blood test can determine 
     if an individual is a carrier of Tay-Sachs disease, and all 
     people in the United States, especially those people who are 
     members of high-risk populations, should be screened; and
       Whereas raising awareness of Tay-Sachs disease is the best 
     way to fight this horrific disease: Now, therefore, be it
       Resolved, That the Senate designates September 2009 as 
     ``Tay-Sachs Awareness Month''.

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