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Welcome to The Visible Embryo, a comprehensive educational resource on human development from conception to birth.

The Visible Embryo provides visual references for changes in fetal development throughout pregnancy and can be navigated via fetal development or maternal changes.

The National Institutes of Child Health and Human Development awarded Phase I and Phase II Small Business Innovative Research Grants to develop The Visible Embryo. Initally designed to evaluate the internet as a teaching tool for first year medical students, The Visible Embryo is linked to over 600 educational institutions and is viewed by more than ' million visitors each month.


WHO International Clinical Trials Registry Platform
The World Health Organization (WHO) has created a new Web site to help researchers, doctors and patients obtain reliable information on high-quality clinical trials. Now you can go to one website and search all registers to identify clinical trial research underway around the world!



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Disclaimer: The Visible Embryo web site is provided for your general information only. The information contained on this site should not be treated as a substitute for medical, legal or other professional advice. Neither is The Visible Embryo responsible or liable for the contents of any websites of third parties which are listed on this site.
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Pregnancy Timeline by SemestersFetal liver is producing blood cellsHead may position into pelvisBrain convolutions beginFull TermWhite fat begins to be madeWhite fat begins to be madeHead may position into pelvisImmune system beginningImmune system beginningPeriod of rapid brain growthBrain convolutions beginLungs begin to produce surfactantSensory brain waves begin to activateSensory brain waves begin to activateInner Ear Bones HardenBone marrow starts making blood cellsBone marrow starts making blood cellsBrown fat surrounds lymphatic systemFetal sexual organs visibleFinger and toe prints appearFinger and toe prints appearHeartbeat can be detectedHeartbeat can be detectedBasic Brain Structure in PlaceThe Appearance of SomitesFirst Detectable Brain WavesA Four Chambered HeartBeginning Cerebral HemispheresFemale Reproductive SystemEnd of Embryonic PeriodEnd of Embryonic PeriodFirst Thin Layer of Skin AppearsThird TrimesterSecond TrimesterFirst TrimesterFertilizationDevelopmental Timeline
Click weeks 0 - 40 and follow fetal growth
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June 10, 2011--------News Archive

Hormone Test Helps Predict Success In IVF
Women with high levels of the hormone AMH produced more eggs for in vitro fertilization (IVF) procedures, and were more likely to have pregnancies.

Fragile X Protein Acts as Toggle Switch in Brain Cells
Research shows how the protein missing in fragile X syndrome – the most common inherited form of intellectual disability – acts as a molecular toggle switch in brain cells.


June 9, 2011--------News Archive

Early Light Refines the Brain’s Vision Circuitry
Light and sight are connected from the beginning.

Molecule Shared by Nervous and Vascular Systems
IRCM researchers show that a key molecule of the vascular system is essential for the formation of neural circuits.


June 8, 2011--------News Archive

Fetal Exposure to BPA Changes Uterus in Primates
Oral intake of BPA altered expression of HOX and WNT genes which are critical for uterine development.

Pregnancy Weight Gain Risks Fat Baby, Child, Adult
Women who gain too much weight during pregnancy tend to have newborns with a high amount of body fat, regardless of the mother's weight before pregnancy.


June 7, 2011--------News Archive

Exposure to BPA Has Been Underestimated
New research results indicate BPA accumulates more rapidly within the body than previously thought.

Pregnant Women Can Prevent Excess Weight Gain with Simple Steps
Women who did not self-weigh gained an average of 15.2 pounds.


June 6, 2011--------News Archive

Programming Disease by Gender
Excess maternal stress can program adverse health effects through multiple generations, especially in boys.

Birth Control Pill for Men On the Horizon?
But to make the pill a reality, research needs to show that the compound is safe, effective – and reversible.

Finding How Pre-gut Cells Become Focused
Research has outlined exactly how specific cells in sea-urchin embryos become the endoderm, the domain that eventually forms the gut.

Found, Genetic Mutation Causing Excess Hair Growth
Scientists in Beijing, China, have discovered a chromosome mutation responsible for a very rare condition in which people grow excess hair all over their bodies.

WHO Child Growth Charts

Women who gain too much weight during pregnancy tend to have newborns with a high amount of body fat, regardless of the mother's weight before pregnancy, a new study finds.

The researchers will present the results Tuesday at the 93rd Annual Meeting in Boston of the The Endocrine Society.

High fat at birth is a possible risk factor for childhood obesity, said the study's principal investigator, Jami Josefson, MD, a pediatric endocrinologist at Chicago's Children's Memorial Hospital and assistant professor at Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine.

"Previous studies have shown that children of mothers who gain too much weight during pregnancy are more likely to be overweight for their age," Josefson said. "However, not all these studies accounted for the mother's diabetes status during pregnancy, which is a known risk factor for offspring obesity."

The new study evaluated only pregnant women without gestational diabetes, therefore ruling out the chance that this disorder could account for their findings.

Josefson and her colleagues wanted to learn whether pregnant women who gain more than the recommended amount of weight have fat infants. Doctors, however, do not typically measure a newborn's body fat, she said. Many past studies that measured newborn body fat used an imprecise method, such as skin fold thickness, according to the authors' abstract.

This study used a new infant body composition system (Pea Pod) that employs an air-displacement technique, which Josefson said accurately and safely measures newborn body fat. This technique requires the infant to simply lie in a machine for two minutes, she said. Newborns in the study underwent measurements of length, weight and fat within 48 hours of birth.

Of the 56 mothers the researchers studied, 31 women were within guidelines for pregnancy weight gain, and 25 exceeded the guidelines. The Institute of Medicine recommends that women at a healthy weight before pregnancy gain 25 to 35 pounds while expecting a single baby; overweight women, 15 to 25 pounds; and obese women, 11 to 20 pounds.

Study subjects who were obese before pregnancy were more likely than healthy-weight women to exceed the weight-gain guidelines (70 percent versus 31 percent, respectively), the authors reported. Yet regardless of pre-pregnancy weight, women who put on more than the recommended weight gave birth to significantly fatter babies.

Their newborns had 490 grams, or 17.5 ounces, of body fat, whereas newborns of women who stayed within the guidelines had 390 grams (13.9 ounces) of fat. This higher obesity risk existed even when birth weight was normal.

"Excessive weight gain during pregnancy, regardless of pre-pregnancy weight, is an important risk factor for newborn obesity," Josefson said. "More research is needed to determine if high amounts of fat at birth are associated with high amounts of fat in childhood."

This study was funded in part by the Women's Board of Northwestern Memorial Hospital. Original article: http://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2011-06/tes-epw060711.php