Speaker Profile

MD, Masters or Bachelor Degree, Associate Professor, Maternal Fetal Medicine and Clinical Genetics, UCSF

Dr. Sparks is a physician who specializes in Maternal-Fetal Medicine and Clinical Genetics. Her clinical time is spent performing prenatal ultrasounds, developing strategies for genetic evaluations of fetal anomalies, counseling families about the management of fetal anomalies, and caring for pregnant individuals who are diagnosed with a genetic disease themselves. She is the prenatal ultrasound unit director for UCSF Benioff Childrens Physicians, is actively involved in genetics education through the UCSF School of Medicine, and mentors numerous residents, fellows, and junior faculty. Dr. Sparks research focuses on applying genomic sequencing, functional studies, and fetal phenotyping to discover genetic diseases underlying non-immune hydrops fetalis. Her research program integrates genetic sequencing and fetal imaging to define the unique fetal phenotypes of genetic diseases, achieve an earlier diagnosis, and develop novel opportunities for fetal intervention and treatment for cases of non-immune hydrops fetalis.

Prenatal genetic diagnosis: past, present, and future
This talk will provide an overview of current prenatal screening and diagnostic genetic testing options, discuss our current understanding of how genetic diseases manifest in utero, and describe future directions of prenatal screening, diagnostic testing, and novel in utero treatments for genetic diseases.

 Session Abstract – PMWC 2023 Silicon Valley

Track 3, January 26

Track Co-Chairs:
Yoel Sadovsky, UPMC
Aleksandar Rajkovic, UCSF

Researchers have long been recognizing the uniqueness of women’s health and its substantial effect on clinical practice, acknowledging the increasing appreciation of the importance of multidisciplinary approaches to health and disease. In every organ system, there are diseases that are unique to women, more common in women than in men, or characterized by differences in disease course in women compared to men. This Track will focus on the following topics related to Women’s Health:

  • Chronic Diseases in Women
    - Marcia Stefanik, Stanford (Chronic Disease Prevention) - Linda Giudice, UCSF (Endometriosis)
  • Stem Cells, Preimplantation and Prenatal Genetics
    Chair: Akash Kumar, MyOme, Inc. (Ploygenic risk score)
    - Vitorio Sebastiano, Stanford (Stem cells and fertility)
    - Teresa Sparks, UCSF
    - Nathan Treff, Genomic Prediction
  • Precision Health for Mothers and Babies
    Chair: David Stevenson, U. of Stanford (Introduction: Towards Precision Health for Mothers and Babies)
    - Aleks Rajkovic, UCSF (Genomics of Pregnancy Loss)
    - Ivana Maric, Stanford (ML for Early Prediction)
    - Nima Aghaeepour, Stanford (AI-Driven Prematurity Taxonomy)
  • Components of Pregnancy Health
    Chair: Yoel Sadovsky, U. of Pittsburgh (Placental Health)
    - Marina Sirota, UCSF (Leveraging Molecular and Clinical Data)
  • Reproductive Aging (PANEL)
    Chair: Aleksandar Rajkovic, UCSF
    - Diana Laird, UCSF
    - Nikolina Lauc, GlycanAge
    - Dina Radenkovic, Gameto
  • Sex Differences
    - Noel Bairey Merz, Cedar Sinai (CV disease)
    - Danit Ariel, Stanford (Bone Health)