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Defeat Duchenne Canada is here to help families understand the complexities of Duchenne.

Whether you are a newly diagnosed family or have been living with Duchenne for some time, it’s normal to feel a bit overwhelmed by all the information and scientific jargon thrown your way. The great news is we know a lot more about Duchenne today than we ever have, and we hope you find the information we have provided here helpful. If you have any questions, please feel free to reach out to us.

Duchenne muscular dystrophy is a form of muscular dystrophy that affects children – with the vast majority of those diagnosed being boys. Duchenne is characterized by a progressive muscle weakness and currently has no cure. However, research is continuing to move the needle forward in terms of understanding and treating the disease, so those with Duchenne are living longer than ever.

What is Duchenne muscular dystrophy?

Muscular dystrophy is an overarching term for a group of muscle diseases defined by muscle weakness. There’re over 30 forms of this disease, and Duchenne muscular dystrophy, often referred to as DMD or simply Duchenne, is the most common form.

What causes Duchenne muscular dystrophy?

Duchenne is caused by changes (also called ‘mutations’) in the DMD gene. These changes impact the body’s instructions when creating a protein called dystrophin. Dystrophin plays a vital role in the strength, stability and function of our muscles.


One of the most abundant and complex elements that contribute to who we are is our genes. To understand what causes Duchenne, it’s essential to understand what genes are and how changes or mutations to their makeup can cause this condition.