Hugues Joublin Scholarship

Hugues Joublin's List of Common Genetic Diseases

Hugues Joublin’s List of Common Genetic Diseases

Genetic disorders are a bit horrifying. Not just because of the disease itself, but also because there’s nothing you can really do about them. Genetic diseases, Hugues Joublin explains, are a result of the genetic material in your DNA. You can be born with them, or the genetic material mutates because of issues and you develop the disorder.

Types of Genetic Disorders by Hugues Joublin

Genetic disorders can be of three types, Hugues Joublin says. They can be chromosomal, which means that the chromosomes within your DNA can be either missing or duplicated, which can cause problems.

They can be multifactorial, which means that a combination of things can cause the disorder to develop, such as genetic mutations, diet, medication or even substances like tobacco or alcohol.

Genetic disorders can also be monogenic, which is that a single gene mutation results in a number of different things.

Common Genetic Disorders by Hugues Joublin

There are many types of genetic disorders, some of which are much more common than others.

Down Syndrome

Down syndrome is a chromosomal disorder that is very common, though there is no certainty around why it happens. Down syndrome is a result of the changes in how some chromosomes divide, and can have physical, cognitive and behavioral symptoms. People with Down syndrome often have some level of difficulty or delay in cognition.

Alzheimer’s Disease

Alzheimer’s Disease, Hugues Joublin explains, is a brain disorder that is unfortunately irreversible. It usually affects people of old age. Alzheimer’s affects people’s memory, thinking and learning and eventually their ability to carry out daily activities. Alzheimer’s is very common, and is a progressive condition in that it gets worse over time.


Arthritis is a common disorder that affects joints, though most people don’t know it’s genetic. Arthritis causes pain in movement, which can make things very difficult. Unfortunately, there is no cure for arthritis, but there are ways to manage the condition and keep it from becoming worse.


Diabetes is another common disorder, which is again not known by many to be genetic. It is a disease that affects the immune system, making the insulin in your body not work as it should – and in some cases, destroy the insulin-producing cells in the body too. Diabetes also does not have a cure, but can be managed.


Cancer is perhaps the most common disease and also the leading cause of death around the world, and is also a result of your genes. According to Hugues Joublin, when your genetics stop controlling the way your cells divide, old cells stop dying and start forming abnormal ones as they grow instead. This is what causes cancer.


Migraines are, surprisingly, also a result of your genes. When your genes are more sensitive to changes in the environment, even small things can trigger a migraine. Migraines are usually inherited, with about 60% of people who suffer from migraines having gotten it because of their parents. Fortunately, migraines are a lot more manageable than most other genetic disorders.