Further research in genetics and epigenetic factors may lead to better recognition of at-risk individuals and the development of more effective prevention strategies. Standardized approaches to determine accurate estimates of maternal alcohol intake and accurate categorized outcomes are essential in future research. Finally – and this may lead to my hanging by the jury and by colleagues in the medical genetics clinic – notwithstanding the importance of biological factors in the cause of FASD apart from alcohol and the importance of understanding mechanisms of alcohol effects, studies identifying genetic risk factors for FASD will not likely have a meaningful impact on the prevalence, treatment or prevention of FASD.

~ Albert Chudley, Medical Director, Winnipeg Regional Health Authority & Department of Pediatrics, University of Manitoba

Chudley, A. (2010). Genetic pre-disposing factors. In Jonsson, E., Dennett, L., Littlejohn, G. (2010). Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD): Across the Lifespan: Proceedings from an IHE Consensus Development Conference 2009.

Videos of the full conference can viewed here. Hard copies of the book can be ordered from the Institute of Health Economics or downloaded as a PDF.