The University of Louisville Birth Defects Center is a collaborative effort of nearly 40 researchers and physicians from multiple departments in the Schools of Medicine, Dentistry, Nursing, and Arts and Sciences. Established in 2000, the Center’s overall mission is the pursuit of knowledge of developing biological systems, and the application of that knowledge to improve the diagnosis and treatment of birth defects in order to reduce the burdens caused by such disabilities be affecting their prevention.
One of the many specific research efforts in the Center focuses on the identification of genes responsible for specific developmental anomalies. A rationale for identifying such genetic culprits is to be able to test for the presence or absence of genes that would predispose women of child-bearing age to the risk of giving birth to a child with a particular birth defect. Other research efforts include, but are not limited to, neuronal sequelae of sleep apnea, causes of autism, genetic correlates of craniofacial anomalies, the molecular basis of neural tube defects, causes of diabetes, identification of genes responsible for congenital night blindness, cell signaling and infertility, epigenetics and altered cognition and developmental toxicity of exposure to cigarette smoke exposure.
2013-2014 Birth Defects Center Annual Report
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