Krabbe disease is caused by a defective gene that must be inherited from both parents. But even if both parents have the defective gene, a child may not develop Krabbe disease.

If both parents are carriers of the defective gene for Krabbe disease, their offspring have a 25 percent risk of developing the disorder. If a child inherits the gene from only one parent, he or she will be a carrier but will never develop symptoms.

Krabbe disease occurs more often in people from Israel than in the population at large.

Jun. 11, 2011