14-year old boy looks like a very old man because he's ageing eight times faster than normal

A teenage boy has the appearance of an old man who is 90-years old because he is ageing eight times faster than normal.

Nihal Bitla

A teenage boy has the appearance of an old man who is 90-years old because he is ageing eight times faster than normal.

Nihal Bitla, 14, has wrinkly skin, withered limbs and a bald head because of the genetic disorder Hutchinson-Gilford Progeria Syndrome (HGPS).

Nihal appeared healthy until 18 months old when his parents noticed some light patches and dark spots on his skin.

He then stopped developing normally, his joints became weak, his hair fell out and his skin aged rapidly.

For years, the family did not know what was wrong with him until five years ago when medics gave them the devastating news he had (HGPS).

HGPS is caused by a genetic mutation in the gene LMNA, which is responsible for producing a protein that helps maintain the structural integrity of the nucleus in cells.

Nihal, who lives on the outskirts of Mumbai, India, has now started clinical trials for a cancer drug that doctors hope will slow the ageing process.

Nihal went to Boston last December to undergo this treatment, which uses a cancer drug called Lonafarnib and reverses changes in blood vessels.

It is not clear if his life expectancy will be lengthened following the research at Progeria Research Foundation in Boston.

Nial who currently weights 12.5 KG stopped school because his friends have started to tease him.

On the plus side, the condition does not affect his brain so his mind will remain young despite his body's rapid decline.

In the meantime he says he has three wishes in his life; to meet ASIMO The Robot made by Honda in Japan; to go to Disneyland in California and another secret wish he says he will reveal later in his life.

His father Srinivas said: "No matter how much time is left, I just want to try to fulfil my son's wishes for now."

His family say he has a kind, gentle nature and gets on well with his two healthy siblings, sister Sonu, 11, and a brother Lucky, 4.

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