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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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June 17, 2011--------News Archive

Postnatal Depression Linked to Depression in Child
The effects of maternal depression on the likelihood of the child to develop depression may begin as early as infancy.

First Diagnostic Test for Hereditary Child's Disease
A breakthrough in genetic research has uncovered the defect behind a rare hereditary child’s disease that inhibits the body’s ability to break down vitamin D.

Walking, Sex, Spicy Food Favored to Bring On Labor
Near the end of pregnancy, some women take it upon themselves to try to induce labor, mostly by walking, having sex, eating spicy food or stimulating their nipples.


June 16, 2011--------News Archive

Effects of Premature Birth Can Reach Into Adulthood
Premature infants are less healthy, have more social and school struggles and face a greater risk of heart-health problems in adulthood.

Mouse Genetics Are A Resource For Human Genetics
Mouse gene knockouts will empower mammalian gene studies for a generation.


June 15, 2011--------News Archive

Malnourishment - Pregnant or Lactating - Key to Diseases In Children
Study in primates establishes critical role that undernourishment in mothers-to-be and lactating females has in creating type 2 diabetes in offspring.

We Are All Mutants
The first whole-genome measure of human mutation predicts 60 new mutations exist within each of us at birth.

Canadian Women On Technology Used in Childbirth
This generation's choice of C-section does not reflect knowledge of the procedure's complications to mother and child.


June 14, 2011--------News Archive

Malnourishment - Pregnant or Lactating - Key to Diseases In Children
Study in primates establishes critical role that undernourishment in mothers-to-be and lactating females has in creating type 2 diabetes in offspring.

We Are All Mutants
The first whole-genome measure of human mutation predicts 60 new mutations exist within each of us at birth.

Canadian Women On Technology Used in Childbirth
This generation's choice of C-section does not reflect knowledge of the procedure's complications to mother and child.


June 13, 2011--------News Archive

Cell Division Linked to Oxygen Levels
Johns Hopkins reports that the MCM proteins, which promote cell division, also directly control the oxygen-sensing HIF-1 protein which controls cell division.

Many Genetic Keys Needed to Unlock Autism
Hundreds of small genetic variations are associated with autism spectrum disorders, including an area of DNA that may be key to understanding why humans are social animals.

Children Eschew the Fat - If Dad Says So
Dad's choice of where to eat could literally tip the scales on his children's health.

Mom's B Vitamins Lower Child's Colorectal Cancer
Mice born to mothers who are fed a diet supplemented with B vitamins are less likely to develop intestinal tumors

WHO Child Growth Charts

Hundreds of small genetic variations are associated with autism spectrum disorders, including an area of DNA that may be a key to understanding why humans are social animals, according to a multi-site collaborative study led by researchers at Yale University.

Published in the June 9 issue of the journal Neuron, the study reinforces the theory that autism, a disorder that develops in early childhood involving impairments in social interaction, language deficits and distinctive behaviors, is not caused by one or two major genetic defects, but by many small variations, each associated with a small percentage of cases.

The study-led by Matthew State, M.D., Ph.D., the Donald J. Cohen Associate Professor of Child Psychiatry, Psychiatry and Genetics-looked at more than 1,000 families in which there was a single child with an autism spectrum disorder, an unaffected sibling and unaffected parents.

The team, including postdoctoral fellow and first author Stephan Sanders from Yale, compared individuals with autism to their siblings to determine what types of genetic changes distinguished the affected child from the unaffected child.

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Matthew State, M.D., Ph.D

"Thanks to an ambitious collaboration among a large group of autism researchers from around the country, supported by the Simons Foundation, we were able to focus on an ideal study population," said State, who is co-director of the Yale Program on Neurogenetics. "It made all the difference in our ability to identify several regions of the genome clearly contributing to autism."

One of the most intriguing of these findings points to the same small section of the genome that causes Williams syndrome-a developmental disorder marked by high sociability and an unusual aptitude for music.

In autism, there is an increase in the chromosomal material, an extra copy of this region, and in Williams syndrome, "there's a loss of that same material," said State.

"What makes this observation particularly interesting is that Williams syndrome is known for a personality type that is highly empathetic, social, and sensitive to the emotional state of others. Individuals with autism often have difficulties in the opposite direction. This suggests that there is an important key in that region to understanding the nature of the social brain."

State and his team also found about 30 other regions in the genome that are very likely contributing to autism and are focused on about six of those regions that showed the strongest evidence.

"We're now moving on to a second phase of the study looking at an additional 1,600 families and should be able to identify multiple new regions that are strongly implicated in autism," he said.

Sanders and State are optimistic about the new findings, pointing out that genetics is the first step to understanding what's really going on at the molecular and cellular level of the brain.

"We can use these genetic findings to begin unraveling the underlying biology of autism," said Sanders. "This will help tremendously in the effort to identify new and better approaches to treatment."

Two other studies published in the June 9 issue of Neuron report on the same families studied by State, Sanders and their co-authors.

One of these, by a group at Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory in New York, paints a very similar picture-that autism is a highly genetically diverse disorder and that sporadic changes in the structure of the genome present only in the affected individuals and not in other families often play a key role.

The other study, by researchers at Columbia University, suggests that although hundreds of genes may be involved in autism, they appear to disrupt a common molecular network involved in the mobility of brain cells and development of synapses between them.

Additional Yale authors on the study include Gulhan Ercan-Sencicek, Michael Murtha, Abha Gupta, Kaya Bilguvar, Murim Choi, Nicole Davis Wright, Nicholas DiLullo, Thomas Fernandez, Gerald Goh, Kyle Meyer, John Murdoch, Gordon Ober, Melanie Raubeson, Youeun Song, Murat Günel, Richard Lifton and Shrikant Mane.

The following authors participated in the study at Yale but are now at other institutions: Christopher Mason, Rahul Dhodapkar, Vikram Fielding-Singh, Daniel Fishman, Sindhuja Kammela, Brian O'Roak, Rebecca Pottenger and Ilana Yurkiewicz.

Citation: Neuron, Vol. 70, Issue 5 (June 9, 2011). Original article: http://opac.yale.edu/news/article.aspx?id=8626