Oral Clefts: Equal Opportunity Disorders

Sunday, February 20, 2011: 1:00 PM-2:30 PM
147B (Washington Convention Center )
Oral-facial clefts (a gap in a body structure that results from incomplete closing of a specific structure during development) can occur in the lip, the palate, or both (cleft lip/palate). They are the most common of all birth defects and can be syndromic (associated with another inherited disease or syndrome) or nonsyndromic (isolated). Both genetic and environmental factors contribute to the presence of oral clefts. About 6,800 babies in the United States are born with isolated oral-facial clefts each year (March of Dimes). The National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research (NIDCR), part of the National Institutes of Health, has recently created the FaceBase Consortium. It is a 5-year initiative that will systematically compile the biological instructions to construct the middle region of the human face and precisely define the genetics underlying its common developmental disorders, such as a cleft lip and palate. Although clefts can be repaired to varying degrees with surgery, researchers are working to understand the developmental processes that lead to clefting and how to prevent the condition or more effectively treat it. This symposium will explore the new advances in our understanding of the genetics of cleft lip/palate, new treatments based on tissue engineering, and the global efforts to help treat individuals affected by this disorder.
Margarita Zeichner-David, University of Southern California
Margarita Zeichner-David, University of Southern California
Terry Beaty, John Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health
Oral Clefts: Moving from Genome-Wide Studies Toward Functional Genomics
Mark Urata, Childrens Hospital Los Angeles
Treatment of Oral Clefts
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