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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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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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Google Search artcles published since 2007
 
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

Dr. Frédéric Charron, researcher at the Institut de recherches cliniques de Montréal (IRCM), and his team have shown for the first time that a key molecule of the vascular system directs axons during the formation of neural circuits.

This connection between the nervous system and the vascular system could be a good starting point for the development of therapies for neurodegenerative diseases. The discovery will be published tomorrow by Neuron, a scientific journal of the Cell Press group.

"To properly form neural circuits, developing axons (long extensions of neurons that make the nerves) need molecules to guide them towards their target, in the same way that road signs guide us when we drive," explains Pierre Fabre, doctoral student in Dr. Charron's team and first co-author of the article.

The nervous system is not the only system formed during human embryo development. Blood vessels are also organized into a very complex network, which led to the idea that certain molecules could be reused by both the nervous system and the vascular system. In fact, recent studies revealed that the reference points used to guide axons also help blood vessels reach their targets.

"One of the key molecules of the vascular system is the vascular endothelial growth factor, better known as VEGF," adds Mr. Fabre. "We discovered that VEGF is able to attract nervous system axons. More specifically, we identified Flk-1 as the receptor responsible for this effect, making it a prime target for the development of therapies to re-grow axons after lesions of the central nervous system or neurodegenerative diseases."

This scientific breakthrough was possible due to an innovative technique developed by Dr. Charron's laboratory a few years ago. The system uses a microscopic device to control and observe, in real time, the axon's behaviour in response to guidance molecules. This technique allowed the researchers to follow the axon's trajectory and revealed VEGF's role in directing axons.

"This research could have an important long-term impact in the field of spinal cord repair, as the results will help us better understand the development of the spinal cord," says Dr. Charron, Director of the IRCM's Molecular Biology of Neural Development research unit. "The more we learn about the molecules needed to appropriately guide axons, the more it will become possible to develop a therapy to treat spinal cord injuries."

"These new findings are of great interest to the research community as they offer new hope for the treatment of neurodegenerative diseases," says Dr. Anthony Phillips, CIHR's Scientific Director of the Institute of Neurosciences, Mental Health and Addiction.

"CIHR recognizes the important work of Dr. Charron's team and this novel discovery linking blood vessels and neurons to neural circuit formation."

This research project was conducted in close collaboration with Dr. Peter Carmeliet's (senior co-author of the article with Dr. Charron) team at the Vesalius Research Center, in Leuven (Belgium), including Dr. Carmen Ruiz de Almodovar, first co-author of the study with Mr. Fabre.

Research carried out in Dr. Charron's laboratory was funded by the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR) and the Fonds de recherche en santé du Québec (FRSQ). Pierre Fabre also holds scholarships from the Université de Montréal and the IRCM.

For more information, please refer to the article summary published by Neuron: http://www.cell.com/neuron/abstract/S0896-6273(11)00343-6.

Frédéric Charron obtained his PhD in experimental medicine from McGill University. He is an Associate IRCM Research Professor and Director of the Molecular Biology of Neural Development research unit. Dr. Charron is also associate researcher in the Department of Medicine at the Université de Montréal, and associate member of the Department of Medicine (Division of Experimental Medicine), the Department of Biology, and the Department of Anatomy and Cell Biology at McGill University. In addition, he is a member of the McGill Integrated Program in Neuroscience, the Montreal Regional Brain Tumor Research Group at the Montreal Neurological Institute, and the Centre of Excellence in Neurosciences (CENUM) at the Université de Montréal. Dr. Charron is a Research Scholar from the Fonds de recherche en santé du Québec (FRSQ).

About the Institut de recherches cliniques de Montréal (IRCM)

Founded in 1967, the IRCM (www.ircm.qc.ca) is currently comprised of 36 research units in various fields, namely immunity and viral infections, cardiovascular and metabolic diseases, cancer, neurobiology and development, systems biology and medicinal chemistry.

Original article: http://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2011-06/idrc-cdb060811.php