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May 27, 2009

Practical and Ethical Considerations of Noninvasive Prenatal Diagnosis

Author Affiliations

Author Affiliations: Division of Human Genetics, Department of Genetics and Developmental Biology (Dr Benn), and Department of Community Medicine and Health Care (Dr Chapman), University of Connecticut Health Center, Farmington.

JAMA. 2009;301(20):2154-2156. doi:10.1001/jama.2009.707

Chromosome abnormalities such as trisomy 21 (Down syndrome), other autosomal trisomies, sex chromosome abnormalities, and balanced and unbalanced translocations can be prenatally diagnosed. For many individuals, the availability of prenatal diagnosis removes the fear of having a child with a severe physical or mental disability. For chromosome abnormalities that are associated with significant morbidity and mortality, the public's acceptance of prenatal diagnosis has been well established during the past 4 decades during which testing has been available.