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The 16 Year Old Baby (2014)

posted by admin, June 22, 2015 @ 11:17 pm

Movie: The 16 Year Old Baby

  • Director:
  • Stars:
  • Release Date: May 29, 2014
  • Run Time: 46 mins
  • Genre: Documentary

The Greenbergs are an ordinary family living in suburban Baltimore whose lives are taken up with with work, car pools and chores. They celebrate holidays with their extended family and chronicle their children’s lives in home videos and photos. The Greenbergs are just like any other American family, except for one thing ? their third daughter Brooke is very different from any other 16-year-old. Brooke weighs 17lbs and is 30 inches long. The size and weight of an 11-month-old infant, Brooke stopped growing and ageing when she was five. Her condition is so rare that doctors have named it Syndrome X. No one knows why she has failed to grow and develop, but academics now believe that her genes may offer new insight into the ageing process. The 16-year-old Baby draws on the extensive home video and photographic archive kept by the Greenberg family. The film follows them as they go about their daily lives with school and doctors appointments for Brooke, cake baking, tennis and college for their other daughters. Brooke has already lived longer than doctors had predicted. Experts believe that it is a mutated gene that stops her from ageing. Florida microbiologist Dr Richard Walker, working with geneticists at the University of South Florida, is looking at Brooke’s case and hopes that by studying her DNA he will be able to isolate the gene that causes ageing. With this groundbreaking information, he believes that he could help to halt the development of diseases that frequently occur in later life. Featuring interviews with Brooke’s parents, Howard and Melanie, her sisters, Emily, Caitlin and Carly, and her two grandmothers, Trudy and Jeanne, the programme looks at her highs and lows, the medical crises from which doctors did not believe Brooke would recover, the struggles the family has endured and the joy that Brooke has brought into their lives. The Greenbergs accepted many years ago that Brooke would never grow, but take comfort in the fact that cracking her genetic secret could make a major contribution to medical science.

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