The Washington Post recently examined innovations in prenatal genetic testing, including research on a new technique called chromosomal microarray analysis by NYP/CUMC reproductive geneticist Dr. Ronald Wapner. In an article published in the New England Journal of Medicine, microarray analysis was shown by Wapner and collaborators to be as effective as the standard method of amniocentesis analysis (karyotyping) in analyzing the number of chromosomes present in a fetal cell. In addition, the test found DNA abnormalities not detected in karyotyping.
Microarray analysis is part of a sea change in prenatal testing, according to Ronald Wapner, a reproductive genetics expert at NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital/Columbia University Medical Center, who led the study. In just the past two to three years, Wapner says, “the genetic testing that’s available for pregnancies has become phenomenally more advanced.”