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NYC MARATHON 2017

Join us in the race to cure Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy

WELCOME TO the Zack Heger Foundation

Help Find a Cure

Our mission is to fund important research to find a cure or treatment for Duchenne, as well as to fund programs that extend, and improve, the quality of life of children afflicted with this disease. Please take a few minutes to watch the video above about our organization.

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EZ Lap Tray

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Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy

Duchenne muscular dystrophy is the most common fatal genetic disorder diagnosed in childhood, affecting approximately 1 in every 3,500 live male births (about 20,000 new cases each year). Because the Duchenne gene is found on the X-chromosome, it primarily affects boys; however, it occurs across all races and cultures. 

Duchenne results in progressive loss of strength and is caused by a mutation in the gene that encodes for dystrophin. Because dystrophin is absent, the muscle cells are easily damaged. The progressive muscle weakness leads to serious medical problems, particularly issues relating to the heart and lungs. Young men with Duchenne typically live into their late twenties. 

Duchenne can be passed from parent to child, but approximately 35% of cases occur because of a random spontaneous mutation. In other words, it can affect anyone. Although there are medical treatments that may help slow its progression, there is currently no cure for Duchenne.