Date: Nov. 18
Topic: "Velo-Cardio-Facial syndrome - 22q11.2 deletion. Charting a course for success!"
Velo-Cardio-Facial syndrome or VCFS is due to a tiny missing piece of genetic material from the 22nd chromosome and occurs in 1 in 2000 individuals. Children with VCFS are often born with heart defects and/or cleft palate and may have health problems including feeding and swallowing problems, the ability to fight infection, speech delay, and learning disabilities. This seminar will discuss the diagnosis and treatment of VCFS and will highlight ways in which early intervention and therapy can improve medical and developmental outcome in individuals with VCFS.
Speakers: Dr. Lorraine Potocki, Associate Professor, Department of Molecular and Human Genetics, Baylor College of Medicine; Dr. Paige Powell, Learning Support Center, Texas Children's Hospital; Mrs. Megan Wawarofsky, Parent Advocate
Date: Oct. 14
Topic: “Breast cancer and your family history: how knowledge can keep you healthy”
Over 182,000 women and men will be diagnosed with breast cancer in 2008 and about 5-10% of these cases will be due to changes in a breast cancer gene. Knowing your family history can be the best tool in planning for health screening. This seminar will discuss the effect of family history on breast cancer risk, the current genetic tests as well as updates on breast cancer prevention using estrogen moderator medicines. In addition, this is an opportunity to learn more about the advantages and disadvantages of direct-to-consumer genetic testing.
Speakers: Dr. Sharon Plon, Director, Adult Cancer Genetics Clinic, Baylor College of Medicine; Dr. Powel Brown, Director, Cancer Prevention Clinic, Breast Health Center, Baylor College of Medicine
Date: June 10
Topic: "Current Prospects for Stem Cell Therapies"
Speakers: Dr. Jonathan Berg, Assistant Professor, Department of Molecular and Human Genetics, Baylor College of Medicine; Dr. Margaret Goodell, Professor, Department of Pediatrics - Hematology-Oncology
Date: May 6
Topic: "What's new in PKU?"
Phenylketonuria, also known as PKU, is a genetic condition where affected individuals are not able to break down phenylalanine, an amino acid found in virtually all proteins in our diet. Elevated levels of phenylalanine are toxic to brain development and function, and if untreated causes mental retardation. Based upon newborn screening, babies diagnosed with PKU are placed on a low phenylalanine diet to reduce the phenylalanine level in the body, and with appropriate treatment children and adults can develop and live normally on this life-long diet plan. However, maintaining the protein restricted diet during adolescence and adulthood remains a challenge, but new studies show that an oral medication that stimulates the breakdown of phenylalanine can be effective in treating PKU in a percentage of affected individuals, and this treatment and other more novel therapies will be discussed at this seminar.
Speakers: Dr. William Craigen, Associate Professor, Departments of Molecular and Human Genetics, Baylor College of Medicine; Jocelyn Owens, R.D., L.D.; Judy Owens, parent
Date: April 10
Topic: "Recent Advances in Prader-Willi Syndrome"
Speakers: Dr. Arthur L. Beaudet, Chair, Department of Molecular and Human Genetics, Baylor College of Medicine; Dr. Ann Scheimann, Adjunct Faculty, Pediatrics - Gastroenterology, Hepatology and Nutrition, Baylor College of Medicine
Date: March 25
Topic: "Neurofibromatosis Type I: Working to Solve the Puzzle"
Speaker: Dr. Maria Blazo, Assistant Professor, Department of Family & Community Medicine, Baylor College of Medicine
Date: Feb. 19
Topic: "A Story of Albinism"
Albinism is a group of genetic disorders causing people to have little pigment in their eyes, hair or skin. About 1 in 17,000 people has some form of albinism and many have vision problems. This seminar offers information on how albinism is inherited, current treatment for vision problems and one family’s perspective.
Speakers: Dr. Richard Lewis, Professor, Department of Ophthalmology, Baylor College of Medicine; Mrs. Holly Mayer, parent and former board member of the National Organization for Albinism and Hypopigmentation (NOAH)
Date: Jan. 22
Topic: "Starting a family? Health tips and screening options for you and your partner"
This seminar offers information that can help you to be as prepared as possible before becoming pregnant. We will discuss how avoiding alcohol, knowing your health history and your family health history can be helpful in preparing for your pregnancy. Current screening options will also be reviewed.
Speakers: Sandra Darilek MS, CGC, Department of Molecular and Human Genetics, Baylor College of Medicine; Melissa Strassberg, MS, CGC, Department of Molecular and Human Genetics, Baylor College of Medicine