ISPD Global Updates e-Newsletter

The ISPD e-newsletter, Global Updates, is distributed to ISPD members and affiliates. Through the ISPD Federation network, the newsletter also is disseminated to members of national societies in Europe, Asia, South America and Australia.

Issue 5, 2019

President's Message, Louise Wilkins-Haug, MD, PhD

In Memorium: Laird Jackson, MD, FACMG


ISPD was saddened to hear of the passing of Laird Jackson, MD, age 89. He was influential in the creation of ISPD in the early 1990s and was a founding member and a frequent attendee at meetings through the decades. During the 1992 International Conference on Early Prenatal Diagnosis of Genetic Diseases, he presented his seminal work on CVS and limb defects. At this pivotal meeting, he and other pioneers developed a vision for an international society focused on the growing niche of prenatal genetics.


The ISPD Board is discussing the best way to honor Dr. Jackson's contributions to the organization and will make an announcement soon.

Read More

Congratulations, Early Career Investigators


The three abstracts listed below were the finalists for the 2019 Joe Leigh Simpson Award for the Best Early Career Investigator. To qualify, the presenter must be under 40 and have a high-scoring abstract. Each finalist was given complimentary full conference registration and an additional scholarship for travel provided by the ISPD Education Fund.

In vitro fertilization does not increase the incidence of de novo copy number alterations in fetal and placental lineagesMasoud Zamani Esteki, Department of Clinical Genetics, GROW School for Oncology and Developmental Biology Maastricht University Medical Center


Single circulating trophoblast testing for prenatal diagnosis at early gestational age and for multiple pregnanciesLiesbeth Vossaert, Department of Molecular and Human Genetics, Baylor College of Medicine


Robust, cost effective extension of our non-invasive prenatal diagnosis (NIPD) service for recessive and X-linked conditions using droplet digital PCR. Joe Shaw, NE Thames Regional Genetics Laboratory (Winner)


ISPD has added new resources for Early Career Professionals and Trainees to our website at .

Reproductive Screening SIG Updates

Lorraine Dugoff, MD

Co-Chair, Reproductive Screening SIG

Interviews with Experts Series: We interviewed Dr. Diana Bianchi at the ISPD International Conference in Singapore. We look forward to conducting future interviews with Professor Lyn Chitty and Dr. Roberto Romero.

Our previous interviews with Professor Kypros Nicolaides and Professor Dennis Lo are available on the ISPD website. Dr. Bianchi's interview will be available soon!


Kypros Nicolaides on the most important research questions in the field of cfDNA testing…

"Many conditions will merit being included in a cfDNA process of screening, but I think the companies need to invest a lot more in research to validate their tests. Many of the microdeletions…are very devastating but are we abusing the patients by giving them an inadqequate information about the performance of the screening test? Because we are opening a pandora's box here."


Dennis Lo on the biggest challenge to future research in prenatal diagnosis…

"There are a lot of different challenges, but I think technologically, my own interest is driven by genomic technology like sequencing, which is still rather expensive. It’ll be interesting to see in the future if we have some simple sequencer that is relatively cheap that will allow you at one go to sequence DNA, RNA and know the methylation status..."


Annual Conference Reproductive Screening SIG Breakfast Session: Dr. Liona Poon (pictured second from left) moderated a session on building a bridge between preconception screening and early pregnancy screening and diagnosis.


Dr. Francesca Romana Grati (pictured on right) presented an overview of PGT-A including a review of the technology, indications, performance, challenges and future directions.


Dr. Lorraine Dugoff (pictured second from right) presented an overview of carrier screening including the benefits and limitations associated with ethnicity-based/targeted screening and expanded carrier screening.


Dr. Mar Gil (pictured on left) presented an overview of first trimester screening and diagnosis. Presenters and audience members discussed possible strategies to combine available pregestational and gestational screening and diagnostic tests.


Reproductive Screening SIG

ISPD 2020: Submit Your Abstract

Submit an Abstract and Join Us in Montréal in June!


Submit an abstract and make plans to to attend the 24th International Conference on Prenatal Diagnosis and Therapy, 16-19 June 2020 in Montréal, Canada! Abstracts accepted on a broad range of topics for oral, poster, and lightning communication presentations.


Abstracts are due Monday, 2 March 2020. This is a firm deadline; there will be no extension.

See Abstract Submission Details

Prenatal Diagnosis Journal

Volume 39 | Issue 11 | October 2019


Editor's Choice Article:

Tong S, Kaitu'u‐Lino TJ, Walker SP, MacDonald TM. Blood‐based biomarkers in the maternal circulation associated with fetal growth restriction. DOI: 10.1002/pd.5525


Read October Issue

Volume 39 | Issue 10 | September 2019


Editor's Choice Article:

Hashiloni‐Dolev Y, Nov‐Klaiman T, Raz A. Pandora's pregnancy: NIPT, CMA, and genome sequencing—A new era for prenatal genetic testing. DOI: 10.1002/pd.5495.


Read September Issue

ISPD members have online access to all Prenatal Diagnosis articles via the .


ISPD Global Updates Editors
Lynn Bush (USA)
Lisa Hui (Australia)

Florencia Petracchi (Argentina)

Neeta Vora (USA)

Read Editor Biographies

Global Updates Board Liaisons:

Louise Wilkins-Haug (USA)

Igna Van den Veyver (USA)


Past eNewsletters

Past issues of Global Updates are available on our eNewsletter Archives Page.

Also available on that page are issues of our previous eNewsletter, Prenatal Perspectives.


***Call for Editors***

Would you like to contribute to ISPD through the publication of Global Updates? We are seeking additional editors to review and solicit content in partnership with SIG leaders and ISPD Headquarters. Contact Erin Irtenkauf at for details.


ISPD Board of Directors


Louise E. Wilkins-Haug, President (USA)

Lyn S. Chitty, President-Elect (UK)

Rossa Chiu, Secretary (Hong Kong)

Sylvie Langlois, Treasurer (Canada)

Igna Van den Veyver, Past President (USA)




Mahesh A. Choolani (Singapore)

Francesca Romana Grati (Italy)

Monique C. Haak (Netherlands)

Maria L. Igarzabal (Argentina)

Sebastian Illanes (Chile)

Glenn E. Palomaki (USA)

Neeta L. Vora (USA)

Director, Ex-Officio

Diana Bianchi (USA)

Board of Directors Webpage

Have a question or comment for the Board? Please contact us via Your message will be routed to us, and we will respond as soon as possible.


The newsletter is available free of charge and distrbuted via e-mail  to anyone with an interest in the field of prenatal diagnosis and therapy. Please note that some articles may be available to ISPD members only. 

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