More than 400,000 individuals in the United States have Down syndrome, or trisomy 21–a chromosomal condition caused by an extra 21st chromosome. Down syndrome is the most commonly occurring chromosomal condition. Approximately one in every 733 babies is born with Down syndrome each year.
The Waisman Center provides comprehensive clinical care and support for children with disabilities and their families.
Since 2010, Day with the Experts: Down Syndrome has focused on sharing knowledge about Down syndrome across the life course, from research using stem cells to the latest standards of care.
The Waisman BioLibrary is a new Waisman Center initiative. The first study from this project is related to Down syndrome. Visit to learn more.
Waisman Down Syndrome News
A gift from the Mancheski Foundation continues to provide integral support to doctoral student Matthew Zammit as he furthers his research on the progression of Alzheimer’s disease in individuals with Down syndrome. Zammit is beginning …December 19, 2019
Not so many years ago, people with Down syndrome rarely survived to middle age. Many died young due to heart problems associated with the congenital condition. Today, advances in treatment have allowed them to live longer, healthier lives.October 28, 2019
The Waisman Center is one of 25 recipients to receive funding through a National Institutes of Health (NIH) grant that focuses on advancing research on Down syndrome. The grant is part of the NIH Investigation …October 9, 2019
It’s not a cure for Down syndrome that Dave Witte and Cristina Delgadillo want for their 5-year-old daughter. “Olivia is our daughter and we love her, and we love her because of who she is. …January 24, 2019
About once every year and a half, Erin Harvey takes time off of her job as a teacher’s aide and along with her mom, Nancy, makes a two and a half hour drive from her …October 15, 2018
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Down Syndrome Researchers
Anita Bhattacharyya, PhD
Assistant Professor, Cell & Regenerative Biology
Brad T. Christian, PhD
Professor, Medical Physics & Psychiatry
Sigan Hartley, PhD
Associate Professor, Human Development & Family Studies
Marsha R. Mailick, PhD
Vice Chancellor Emeritus for Research & Graduate Education
Maria Stanley, MD
Medical Director, Waisman Clinics
Clinical Associate Professor, Pediatrics
Audra Sterling, PhD
Assistant Professor, Communication Sciences & Disorders
Houri Vorperian, PhD
Anita Bhattacharyya, PhD, engages in basic biological research using Down syndrome-specific human stem cells to study the development of the cerebral cortex and how it is altered in Down syndrome.
Brad T. Christian, PhD, leads a study using neuroimaging techniques (MRI and PET scanning) and other biofluid markers to evaluate the degree of neurodegeneration in the brains of adults with Down syndrome. This information is being correlated with the results of cognitive and behavioral measures done by Sigan Hartley, PhD, to better understand the aging process in this population.
Audra Sterling, PhD, focuses on the cognitive and language development of individuals with developmental disabilities including Down syndrome. A current study seeks to learn more about how spoken language samples can be used to measure change over time in the spoken language, problem solving and behavior of individuals with genetic syndromes.
Houri Vorperian, PhD, studies how the oral and pharyngeal anatomy affects speech in individuals with Down syndrome and other populations. This study analyzes MRI and CT scans to produce a new understanding of the special challenges faced by some people with Down syndrome in speaking, swallowing and breathing.
Resources & Services
Clinical Services and Supports 608.263.3301; waisman.wisc.edu/clinics Children with Down syndrome are seen in the Waisman Center Genetics Clinic for diagnosis and in the Waisman Center Down Syndrome Clinic for medical management in the areas of feeding, growth, development, communication, behavior, hearing, therapy and support services.
Research Participation 800.965.9205; 608.263.5192; firstname.lastname@example.org
The Waisman Center’s Research Registry links individuals and families to research projects at the Waisman Center. The Waisman Center maintains a confidential registry of families and individuals who would like to be contacted about upcoming research projects. Enrollment in the Research Registry does not obligate an individual or family to participate in any study.
Waisman Resource Center 800.532.321; 800.265.8610; email@example.com
The Waisman Resource Center provides free and confidential information and assistance to families and care providers of children with special health care needs. The Waisman Resource Center is staffed full time by a team of professionals in the fields of social work and education, and with experience in a variety of disability-related areas.
Advancing knowledge about human development, developmental disabilities and neurodegenerative diseases
Community Outreach for Children with Challenging Behaviors 608.265.9438; cow.waisman.wisc.edu/ties
Community Training, Intervention and Evaluations Services (TIES) is an outreach program for children and adults with developmental disabilities who present various challenging behaviors, including withdrawal, aggression and self-injury. The mission of Community TIES is to address behavioral, psychological, and emotional needs using therapeutic approaches that insure continued participation in the community. TIES provides counseling, crisis response, psychiatric consultation, parent education and support, and training for personnel and program consultation in local human service agencies. Directed by Josh Lapin, MSW, and funded by Dane County, this program maintains an active caseload of approximately 250 children and adults in Dane County.