Huntington came from a medical family and studied medicine in New York at Columbia University. Huntington was known by its scientific description of the later named after him Huntington's disease. Both his father, George Lee Huntington (1811-1881) and his grandfather, Abel Huntington (1777-1858), were doctors in the same practice in East Hampton on Long Iceland. George Huntington combined his observations with those of his father and grandfather and was able to capture the heritability and the phenotype of the disease easier.
He originally held on February 15, 1872 the " Meigs and Mason Academy of Medicine " in Middleport (Ohio ) a lecture on his observations. This paper was later published on 13 April 1872 in the U.S. journal " Medical and Surgical Reporter". He later described the disease named after him, with a clinical triad:
- Heritability ( the disease is autosomal dominant)
- Tendency to psychiatric conditions ( " insanity " ) and suicide
- Severe symptoms occur only during adulthood ( Huntington was wrong here - he knew the juvenile form yet).
1908 William Osler wrote in an overview paper on the Paper of Huntington ". In the history of medicine, there are few instances in Which a disease HAS BEEN more Accurately, more Graphically or more Briefly described" George Huntington was with the publication of his observations 22 years old. After that he wrote only a scientific contribution. In 1874 he returned to Dutchess County, New York to undo a practice.
George Huntington should not be confused with the American anatomist George Sumner Huntington ( 1861-1927 ). Both studied at Columbia University in New York.