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June 23 2010

Down Syndrome—New Prospects for an Ancient Disorder

Author Affiliations

Author Affiliations: Faculty of Health Sciences (Dr Einfeld) and Brain & Mind Research Institute (Dr Einfeld and Ms Brown), University of Sydney, Sydney, Australia.

JAMA. 2010;303(24):2525-2526. doi:10.1001/jama.2010.842

Contrary to common expectation, the prevalence of Down syndrome (DS) is increasing. The effect of antenatal diagnosis, and the ensuing termination of many affected pregnancies, is being outweighed by the effects of childbearing later in life and the increased longevity of individuals with DS.1 With no interventions capable of altering the fundamental brain impairments and consequent disabilities of DS, the medical outlook has not been promising. However, several recent developments indicate this may be about to change.

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