Idea Guild > Sagely Advice

Looking for a terminal illness for an NPC

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Murometz:
These are all great! Someone start a scroll!!  :up:

dark_dragon:
Fernstein's Malady
Fernstein's Malady (Also known as Autoimmune Neurofibrillary Prionic Tauopathy; ANPT)  named after renowned physician Professor Bernard Fernstein occurs when antibodies directed against the person's neuron's myelin sheaths cause the formation of defective situational pseudo-tau prions (SPTPs). Contrary to demyelinating diseases, ANPT does not cause the degradation of the myelin sheath. Rather, the sheath is modified in situ into an insulating Myelin/SPTP hybrid. The disease belongs to a class of conditions known as phagocytic disorders, whereby phagocytes (White blood cells that protect the body by ingesting foreign particles) act abnormally.

ANPT is actually a misnomer due to original speculation about the mechanism of action. The current preferred name is Fernstein's Malady.

Occurrence is believed to be due to the traumatic transfer of mutated dendritic phagocytes to close proximity to an axon. (often due to penetrative wounding of a pre-inflamed area of the body) The mutated cells secrete malformed cytokines that deform the Myelin proteins in a way that is poorly understood, leading to the formation of a hybrid Myelin/SPTP sheath selectively on somatic motor neurons (those that control skeletal muscles).

SPTPs will cause the breakdown of microtubules in the surrounding cells, while leaving the axon unharmed, microtubule protein will then proceed to bind to the Myelin/SPTP hybrid and form hard fibres around the affected axon. For unknown reasons, these fibres will be sites of intense calcification, causing severe, debilitating pain and mechanical damage to the surrounding tissues. In patients who die of ANPT, decomposition will reveal thin white filament throughout the body, some big enough to be seen with the naked eye. During the later stages of the disease, the fibres are so thick and numerous that motor function will be mechanically impaired.

Since the calcification and SPTP damage cannot be reversed, once acquired, this disease is irreversible. Amputation of an affected site could prove useful, but since the symptoms take years to develop, by the time a diagnosis is made it is too late, as SPTP formation has occurred throughout the body.

There are two modestly successful management options that will often be effective in increasing a patient's life expectancy after diagnosis:

* Immediate viral vector gene therapy can destroy the vast majority of defective dendritic phagocytes, which will stop the spread of the calcification sites, if not the process itself. Before the wide availability of reliable viral vector gene therapy  immunosupression was used to slow the spread of the disease.
* Taking artificially crafted SPTP co-proteins, that bind to the SPTPs and stop the formation of new calcification sites can reduce the speed of degeneration. While gradual improvements in treatment effectiveness have been made, no current treatment can completely hold off the progression of the calcification and fibre formation.

Symptoms: Gradually worsening muscular pains over several years, often defying diagnosis
Incidence: 1 in 5 000 000
Mortality: 1 year after diagnosis: 25%, 4 years after diagnosis: 86%, 7 years after diagnosis: 98%, 10 years after diagnosis: 100%

Mourngrymn:

--- Quote from: Silveressa --- but I need something that's more or less plausible and makes sense as being able to infect and kill a human host despite advanced medical treatment
--- End quote ---

They are incurably attached to a mother in law like mine. Kills the weak minded faster than a bullet, but sucks the life out of the strong willed and takes years to disintegrate the soul.

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