n South African Medical Journal - A possible heterozygous advantage in muscular dystrophy : the new millennium

Supplement 1
  • ISSN : 0256-9574
  • E-ISSN: 2078-5135



In certain autosomal recessive disorders there is suggestive evidence that heterozygous carriers may have some selective advantage over normal homozygotes. These include, for example, cystic fibrosis, Tay-Sachs disease and phenylketonuria. The best example so far, however, is that of significant heterozygous advantage in sickle-cell anaemia with increased resistance to falciparum malaria.

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