While the following is named "Genetics of the
Acadian People," we all know that the French
Creole, French Canadian, and Acadian populations
are indistinguishable in South Louisiana today.
Therefore, I believe it is vital that we learn
as much as we can about the following projects
and contact Judy Laborde to volunteer for anything
she may need from us.
Discoveries in genetics are redefining medicine
and our understanding of the basic causes of
disease. But how does this new knowledge translate
into improved health care and why are some
diseases more frequent in the Acadia population?
One in 20 American babies is born with a
genetic disorder. Among the Acadian people, risks
for some diseases range from 35% to 250% higher
than the national average.
There are at least four areas of research
associated with this issue:
(1) Dr. Charles Scriver, a renowned geneticist
from McGill University in Montreal, investigates
the History of Families, the Histories of Genes;
(2) Dr. Bronya Keats, director of the Genetics Center
at LSU Medical Center, has been involved in genetic research
among the Acadians for nearly two decades.
(3) Dr. Michal Jazwinski, a biochemist who is
also with LSU Medical Center, is conducting major
research on the genetics of aging that, in the
future, will compare the Acadian populations of
Louisiana and Nova Scotia,
(4) Dr. Carl Brasseaux, assistant director of
the Center for Louisiana Studies at USL, investigates
"Acadian to Cajun: History of a Society
Built on the Extended Family."
Other physicians are investigating such topics
as: genes and cancer, genes and psychiatric
illness, genetic disorders in children, genetic
disorders in adults, genetic research in Acadiana,
genetic testing and genetic counseling, gene-based
therapies, psychological and social impact of
A complete reproduction of presentations on
this subject can be downloaded at:
To learn more, contact Judy LaBorde at
Judy is Coordinator of the Molecular & Human
Genetics Center at Louisiana State University
Medical Center 1901 Perdido St., Suite 5A1
New Orleans, La. 70112
(504)568-6117Phone (504)568-8500 FAX