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New Study by Hong Kong Researchers Could Develop New Down-Syndrome Testing

Wednesday, January 12, 2011 - 4:55pm

HONG KONG, CHINA— A new study released by researchers could develop a new way to test and help screen for Down Syndrome.

Researchers at The Chinese University of Hong Kong published an article in the British Medical Journal revealing information about their newest study.

An experimental blood test could override the current procedures. Doctors currently use amniocentesis and chronic villus sampling, or CVS, to look for abnormalities in a fetus. Amniocentesis is when a hollow needle is surgically inserted through the abdominal wall and into the uterus to obtain amniotic fluid. This is also used to determine the sex of the fetus. High-risk women tend to go undergo these procedures because they have a slight risk for miscarriage.

The new blood test analyzes genetic material from both the mother and the fetus that is found in the mother's blood. Doctors said the test did not give any negative results, and said more study would be needed before the procedure is available for clinical use.


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