Understanding HSP & PLS

HSP and PLS are neurological disorders affecting the voluntary muscles. The disorders are progressive and leads to patients being unable to walk, and more. The Spastic Paraplegia Foundation is dedicated to advancing research and finding the cures for two groups of closely related, progressive neurological disorders: Primary Lateral Sclerosis (PLS) and Hereditary Spastic Paraplegia (HSP).


Primary Lateral Sclerosis

Primary Lateral Sclerosis (PLS) is a group of rare, degenerative, neurological disorders. They are sporadic, meaning there is no clear familial link, although there are hereditary forms of PLS.

Learn more about the causes, symptoms and diagnosis of PLS.

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Hereditary Spastic Paraplegia

Hereditary Spastic Paraplegia (HSP) is a group of rare, inherited neurological disorders. Researchers estimate that some 30 different types of HSP exist; the genetic causes are known for eleven.

Learn more about symptoms, diagnosis and testing for HSP.

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About Heredity and Genetics

A hereditary or genetic disorder is caused by a change (mutation) in a gene. Genes are pieces of biochemical information that form the instructions (code) for the thousands of proteins the body uses to build itself and function.

Learn about how heredity and genetics play a role in your health.

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