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By Amy Norton
HealthDay Reporter

WEDNESDAY, May 8 (HealthDay News) — Mutations in a gene involved in bone development appear to cause certain severe forms of bone loss, a finding that could lead to new therapies for the common bone-thinning disorder osteoporosis, researchers report.

The mutations were found in a Swedish family with 10 members affected by a severe, early onset form of osteoporosis, as well as a Hmong family from Laos in which two sisters suffered from osteogenesis imperfecta.

Osteogenesis imperfecta, which is also known as brittle bone disease, affects six to seven out of every 100,000 people worldwide. The disease causes the bones to break easily, often from little or no trauma. There are four main forms, the most severe of which is fatal before or soon after birth.

The most common — and mildest — form is Type 1, in which most of a child’s bone fractures…

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