World Down Syndrome Day


Bosnia – World Down Syndrome Day is observed every year on March 21rst, with this date chosen symbolically (21/3) to signify the uniqueness of the triplication (trisomy) of the 21rst chromosome which causes Down syndrome. Despite the certain psychophysical disorder in the growth of an individual with Down Syndrome, they are optimistic, joyful and kind-hearted, and their interaction with the environment is warm and sincere.

This syndrome was named after the British physician John Langdon Down who was the first to fully describe this syndrome in 1866. Almost 100 years later (in 1959), the French physician Jérôme Lejeune identified Down syndrome as a chromosomal condition. Instead of the usual 46 (23 pairs) chromosomes present in each cell, Lejeune observed 47 in the cells of individuals with Down syndrome. In each pair, one chromosome comes from the mother, and one from the father. Lejeune later determined that an extra partial or whole copy of chromosome 21 results in the characteristics associated with Down syndrome. Thousands of genes, on every chromosome, carry hereditary characteristics in form of DNA.

World Down Syndrome Day is observed every year with the goal of raising public awareness and understanding to respect the rights of individuals with Down syndrome. The symbol of the day are colorful socks because people with this disorder cannot pair socks. By issuing this postage stamp, Croatian Post Mostar gives its support. (Željka Šaravanja)