What is the March of Dimes doing to prevent and treat FASDs?
March of Dimes-supported researchers are investigating the influence of alcohol on pregnancy. • One grantee is seeking to identify genes that may play a role in causing FAS in order to identify women who are at high risk of having an affected baby if they continue to drink. This could make it possible to provide counseling that may help prevent FAS in their offspring. • Another is seeking to determine the mechanism by which alcohol causes birth defects. This could lead to treatments to reverse or prevent further alcohol-related damage in pregnant women who drank alcohol before they knew they were pregnant or those who do not stop drinking. The March of Dimes also works to prevent FASDs by educating the general public, teenagers, adults of childbearing age and expectant mothers about the dangers of alcohol and other drugs to their unborn children. Because there currently is no way to predict which babies will be damaged by alcohol, the safest course is not to drink alcohol at all during