What causes Duchenne? Genes are found on chromosomes and contain messages to make proteins, important in the structure, function and regulation of the body. Chromosomes are made from DNA, with DNA containing all the genetic information of an individual, with genes being small parts of DNA. Duchenne is caused by an alteration (mutation) in the dystrophin gene, responsible for the production of a protein called dystrophin. Dystrophin is involved in the structure and function of muscles, protecting muscle fibres during muscle contraction. The absence of dystrophin affects the muscle’s ability to function correctly, resulting in progressive muscle degeneration and loss of muscle strength. More information about the cause of Duchenne can be found in genetics explained.