UW Marian H. Rochelle Gateway Center

The University of Wyoming’s Marian H. Rochelle Gateway Center will be illuminated tonight in teal as part of FRAXA Research Foundation’s World Fragile X Day to bring awareness to the syndrome.

The University of Wyoming’s Marian H. Rochelle Gateway Center will be illuminated tonight with FRAXA Research Foundation’s signature teal color as part of World Fragile X Day.

World Fragile X Day is FRAXA’s global initiative to bring awareness to Fragile X syndrome (FXS), as more than 285 landmarks in 13 different countries will be lit in teal, according to a news release Wednesday from the foundation.

Fragile X syndrome is a genetic disorder that occurs when a single gene on the X chromosome shuts down. This gene makes a protein needed for typical brain development. Those affected by Fragile X typically have developmental delays, sensory processing disorders, speech difficulties and more. FXS is the most common inherited cause of autism and intellectual disabilities worldwide. It affects one in 4,000 boys and one in 8,000 girls.

July 22 is a significant day for Fragile X families throughout the United States, since it is officially recognized by Congress as Fragile X Awareness Day. The timing of the event is even more important to families because of recent advances in Fragile X research, thanks to FRAXA’s generous funding of studies and clinical trials.

This year, FRAXA Research Foundation launched its global vision of joining hands with communities around the world to raise Fragile X awareness while accelerating progress toward effective treatments and, ultimately, a cure. World Fragile X Day celebrates families impacted by Fragile X and highlights progress of research to find a cure. On World Fragile X Day, we shine a light on Fragile X by illuminating monuments and landmarks around the world. We gather with friends and family to celebrate loved ones who shine in the face of Fragile X.

Katie Clapp, president and co-founder of FRAXA Research Foundation, shared insight behind this global initiative of uniting the global Fragile X community.

“It takes a village to raise a child, and it takes the world to find a cure,” Clapp said in the release. “Fragile X research has grown far beyond one country’s borders — FRAXA has now funded research in 19 countries! World Fragile X Day celebrates the fact that together we are moving faster than ever toward a cure. These illuminations are moments for families to toss all pain away and feel joy and pride. We are celebrating our families by highlighting the beauty of hundreds of landmarks!”

As the most common inherited single gene cause of autism, Fragile X is the best key to solving autism. Treatments for Fragile X are also likely to help people who have Alzheimer’s or other brain disorders.

FRAXA Research Foundation will be joined by 17 worldwide partners for this event.

In addition to the illuminations, families who can safely gather in accordance with COVID-19 guidelines will be hosting gatherings, fundraisers and virtual events for those in their local communities.

To learn more about Fragile X syndrome and the research that is happening, visit fraxa.org. For details on FRAXA’s global initiative to raise awareness, visit worldfragilexday.com.

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