We are requesting partial financial support to defray speaker travel expenses associated with the 15th meeting of the International Society for Prenatal Diagnosis (ISPD), to be held July 11-14, 2010, in Amsterdam, the Netherlands. The ISPD is a unique, multidisciplinary society that includes obstetricians, maternal-fetal medicine specialists, pediatricians, clinical geneticists, laboratory-based geneticists, genetic counselors, fetal surgeons, researchers, social scientists, and ethicists who work within the discipline of prenatal diagnosis. The ISPD meets every 2 years in different locations to encourage diverse attendance. The 2010 Scientific Program includes 31 internationally renowned invited speakers, and 8 thought leaders who will debate 4 different timely topics within the field. Enthusiasm for the conference is evidenced by the fact that 100% of the invited speakers accepted the invitation to participate. In addition, oral and poster presentations will be accepted from submitted abstracts. State-of the-art debates will inform participants about current areas of controversy. These include whether stem cell therapy is ready for human fetuses, whether industry sponsorship accelerates or hinders the pace of research, whether conventional karyotyping is necessary in the post-array-CGH era, and whether ultrasound is better for Down syndrome screening than cell-free fetal nucleic acids in maternal blood. As a result of attending the ISPD conference participants will be exposed to a wide-range of current topics that will directly affect their clinical practice and will create new research agendas. The multidisciplinary topics and varied backgrounds of the attendees will lead to lively scientific interchange and creative thinking. Innovative aspects of the meeting include the debates regarding controversial areas, a frank discussion of the role of industry in prenatal diagnosis research, and a free downloadable post-program podcast summary presented by leading experts in prenatal diagnosis.
The goal of prenatal diagnosis is to provide pregnant women and their partners with information that allows them to build healthy families. Prenatal diagnosis also allows an opportunity to provide fetal therapy. The goal of this conference is to inform and promote discussions between clinicians, scientists, non-physician health care providers, clinical laboratory directors, and social scientists regarding work in this discipline. As a result of the conference, participants will be able to identify limitations and gaps in current practice and knowledge and develop a research agenda going forward.