Sunday, February 24, 2013

FASD News - 7/2013

BBC News (UK) - Oxford trust publishes alcohol-related foetus disorder guidelines
A charity has published recommendations for medical staff to tackle a foetal disorder caused by drinking alcohol during pregnancy.
Science Daily - Signaling Pathway Linked to Fetal Alcohol Risk: Molecular Switch Promises New Targets for Diagnosis and Therapy
Fetal alcohol syndrome is the leading preventable cause of developmental disorders in developed countries. And fetal alcohol spectrum disorder (FASD), a range of alcohol-related birth defects that includes fetal alcohol syndrome, is thought to affect as many as 1 in 100 children born in the United States.
Memphis Commercial Appeal (USA) - Alcohol, pregnancy add up to tragedy
The term fetal alcohol syndrome (FAS) refers to the most severe permanent effects of a child's exposure to alcohol while in the mother's womb, including mental retardation, abnormal physical appearance and behavior, and extreme limitation of normal lifetime capabilities.
Memphis Commercial Appeal - It happens: women accidentally drink alcohol unaware they're pregnant
Many women know that alcohol can be harmful to an unborn baby and they plan to abstain once they're pregnant. Sometimes, however, a woman drinks alcohol before she knows she's pregnant and then is afraid of the ramifications.
Iowa Now (USA) - UI team to study alcohol's effects on unborn babies
A University of Iowa research team has been awarded nearly $2 million to study the effects on unborn babies from mothers who abuse alcohol during pregnancy.
CJOB (France/Canada) - French Group Learning First-Hand about FASD
A nine-person delegation from France arrives in Winnipeg Thursday to learn about Manitoba's innovative programs for the diagnosis, prevention and treatment of Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD).
The Canberra Times (Australia) - Pregnant pause needed for alcohol awareness
It's not the doctor's fault, really. Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder has become quite an acceptable label to paste on children these days.
The Elkhart Truth - Dog could help Goshen boy with fetal alcohol spectrum disorder
Like many 9-year-olds, Tyler Kidder of Goshen enjoys playing with Lego pieces, watching “Tom and Jerry” and picking on his younger brother. His playing time, though, can be interrupted by his bouts of extreme anger, name-calling and emotional meltdowns.
Yukon News - A life of misunderstandings
Donna Debolt says that of all the disabilities she is aware of, fetal alcohol spectrum disorder is the most misunderstood.

The Swedish FAS-förening and Malmö Högskola will start a small research project about children with FASD. The primary focus will be on everyday life in the family (and what kind of support there is in the society). The FAS-förening would like to hear about similar research that has been done with this focus around the world. Contact Katarina Wittgard at

Murkowski's Advancing FASD Research, Prevention & Services Act
OBG Management – Alcohol: An unfortunate teratogen
Medical students learn early in their education that alcohol is a teratogen. Despite this widespread knowledge, many obstetricians counsel patients about the safety of low doses of alcohol in pregnancy.

Journal of Population Terapeuthics - Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders: Knowledge and Screening Practices of University Hospital Medical Students and Residents
A new study has recently been published with the purpose of evaluating the knowledge and screening practices of pre-clinical medical students and clinical providers on FAS, FASD, and alcohol consumption.
NIH - Scientists identify molecular events that underlie FASD
Scientists have identified a molecular signaling pathway that plays an important role in the development of fetal alcohol spectrum disorders (FASD). The new research in cells and mice, supported by the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA), part of the National Institutes of Health, points to candidate genes for FASD susceptibility and may open new avenues for developing drugs to prevent alcohol damage to the fetal brain.
Addiction - A randomized controlled trial of motivational interviewing to prevent risk for an alcohol-exposed pregnancy in the Western Cape, South Africa
A five-session motivational interviewing intervention was found to be effective with women at risk of an alcohol-exposed pregnancy, and could be implemented as part of routine primary care clinic services in similar populations. The message of ‘no alcohol in pregnancy’ should be adapted to include better family planning and early recognition of pregnancy.
PNAS - Mitogen-activated protein kinase modulates ethanol inhibition of cell adhesion mediated by the L1 neural cell adhesion molecule
There is a genetic contribution to fetal alcohol spectrum disorders (FASD), but the identification of candidate genes has been elusive.
Genetics and Molecular Biology - Maternal drinking behavior and Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders in adolescents with criminal behavior in southern Brazil
Prenatal alcohol exposure can have serious and permanent adverse effects. The developing brain is the most vulnerable organ to the insults of prenatal alcohol exposure. A behavioral phenotype of prenatal alcohol exposure including conduct disorders is also described.
Alcoholism - Does Binge Drinking During Early Pregnancy Increase the Risk of Psychomotor Deficits?
The potential effects of binge drinking during pregnancy on child motor function have only been assessed in a few, small studies. We aimed to examine the effects of binge alcohol consumption during early pregnancy, including number of binge episodes and timing of binge drinking, on child motor function at age 5.
Alcoholism - Gestational Choline Supplementation Normalized Fetal Alcohol-Induced Alterations in Histone Modifications, DNA Methylation, and Proopiomelanocortin (POMC) Gene Expression in β-Endorphin-Producing POMC Neurons of the Hypothalamus
Prenatal exposure to ethanol (EtOH) reduces the expression of hypothalamic proopiomelanocortin (POMC) gene, known to control various physiological functions including the organismal stress response. In this study, we determined whether the changes in POMC neuronal functions are associated with altered expressions of histone-modifying and DNA-methylating enzymes in POMC-producing neurons, because these enzymes are known to be involved in regulation of gene expression. In addition, we tested whether gestational choline supplementation prevents the adverse effects of EtOH on these neurons.

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