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Pregnancy Timeline by SemestersFemale Reproductive SystemFertilizationThe Appearance of SomitesFirst TrimesterSecond TrimesterThird TrimesterFetal 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 HemispheresEnd of Embryonic PeriodEnd of Embryonic PeriodFirst Thin Layer of Skin AppearsThird TrimesterDevelopmental Timeline
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October 17, 2012--------News Archive Return to: News Alerts

"What happens now is if researchers don't see an effect in males,
they won't look in females. But we know certain toxins in the environment
can have a significant effect on females and not males and vice versa."

WHO Child Growth Charts


Scientists Say to EPA – Include Women in Reproductive Health Research

Scientists are to meet with Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to request important changes be made in guidelines for reproductive health

A team of Northwestern University scientists will meet with Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) administrators in Washington D.C. on Oct. 18, 2012, to advocate for important changes in the agency's guidelines for reproductive health research.

"The problem is current research assessing
the risk of toxins on reproductive health
is not being uniformly investigated
in both sexes and across the lifespan,"

Kate Timmerman
Program Director, Oncofertility Consortium,
Northwestern University

Timmerman will be one of the scientists meeting
with the EPA to review reproductive health guidelines
which have not been updated since 1996 and need
to be revised to reflect current research findings.

The Northwestern team will ask the EPA to expand
the definition of reproductive health beyond
pregnancy to include the lifespan of an individual.

"Reproductive health is important across the
entire lifespan because your endocrine system
affects your bone health, cardiovascular health
and other systems in the body."


Endocrine disrupters, sometimes triggered by
environmental factors, can lead to increased risk
for stroke and heart attack as well as osteoporosis.

The Northwestern scientists also will request that all EPA-sponsored research require appropriate testing in both sexes. Currently many toxicity studies are only conducted in male animal models with the assumption that females are affected the same way, but that isn't necessarily true.

"What happens now is if researchers don't see an effect in males, they won't look in females. But we know certain toxins in the environment can have a significant effect on females and not males and vice versa."


Timmerman and colleagues will present this white paper to the EPA on how to improve and update the guidelines: http://www.woodrufflab.org/sites/default/files/EPAWhitePaper.pdf

In addition to Timmerman, other Northwestern scientists meeting with the EPA include Kimberly Gray, professor of civil and environmental engineering at Northwestern's McCormick School of Engineering and Applied Science; Mary Ellen Pavone, M.D., assistant professor of obstetrics and gynecology at Northwestern's Feinberg School of Medicine and a physician at Northwestern Memorial Hospital; and Francesca Duncan, reproductive scientist/research associate in the lab of Teresa Woodruff, chief of fertility preservation at the Feinberg School and director of the Oncofertility Consortium.

Original article: http://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2012-10/nu-ste101612.php