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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 in 1993 as a first generation internet teaching tool consolidating human embryology teaching for first year medical students.

Today, The Visible Embryo is linked to over 600 educational institutions and is viewed by more than 1 million visitors each month. The field of early embryology has grown to include the identification of the stem cell as not only critical to organogenesis in the embryo, but equally critical to organ function and repair in the adult human.

The identification and understanding of genetic malfunction, inflammatory responses, and the progression in chronic disease, begins with a grounding in primary cellular and systemic functions manifested in the study of the early embryo.


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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 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
Click weeks 0 - 40 and follow fetal growth
Search artcles published since 2007

December 26, 2012--------News Archive Return to: News Alerts



In protein synthesis, within the cell cytoplasm, a succession of tRNA molecules are
matched up by base-pairing the anti-codons of the tRNA with codons of the mRNA.

Amino acids then link together extending the growing chain of proteins (black dots),
and the tRNAs, no longer carrying amino acids, are released.

This process is carried out by the ribosome, which is made up of two main chains of RNA, called ribosomal RNA (rRNA), and more than 50 different proteins.

The ribosome latches onto the end of an mRNA molecule and moves along it, capturing tRNA molecules and joining together their amino acids to form a new protein chain.






WHO Child Growth Charts

       

Excessive Protein Synthesis Linked to Autistic-like Behaviors

Autistic-like behaviors can be partially remedied by normalizing excessive levels of protein synthesis in the brain, a team of researchers has found in a study of laboratory mice

The findings, which appear in the latest issue of Nature, provide a pathway to the creation of pharmaceuticals aimed at treating autism spectrum disorders (ASD) that are associated with diminished social interaction skills, impaired communication ability, and repetitive behaviors.

"The creation of a drug to address ASD will be difficult, but these findings offer a potential route to get there," said Eric Klann, a professor at NYU's Center for Neural Science and the study's senior author. "We have not only confirmed a common link for several such disorders, but also have raised the exciting possibility that the behavioral afflictions of those individuals with ASD can be addressed."

The study's other co-authors included researchers from the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF) and three French institutions: Aix-Marseille Universite'; Institut National de la Santé et de la Recherche Médicale (INSERM); and Le Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique (CNRS).


The researchers focused on the EIF4E gene,
whose mutation is associated with autism.

The mutation causing autism was proposed to increase
levels of the eIF4E, the protein product of EIF4E,
and lead to exaggerated protein synthesis.

Excessive eIF4E signaling and exaggerated protein
synthesis also may play a role in a range of neurological
disorders, including fragile X syndrome (FXS).

In their experiments, the researchers examined
mice with increased levels of eIF4E.

They found that these mice had exaggerated levels of
protein synthesis in the brain and exhibited behaviors
similar to those found in autistic individuals,
repetitive behaviors, such as repeatedly burying marbles,
diminished social interaction (monitored interactions
between mice), and behavioral inflexibility (the afflicted
mice were unable to navigate mazes that had been
slightly altered from ones the mice had previously solved).


The researchers also found altered communication between neurons in brain regions linked to the abnormal behaviors.

To remedy to these autistic-like behaviors, the researchers then tested a drug, 4EGI-1, which diminishes protein synthesis induced by the increased levels of eIF4E. Through this drug, they hypothesized that they could return the afflicted mice's protein production to normal levels, and, with it, reverse autistic-like behaviors.


Subsequent experiments confirmed their hypotheses.
The mice were less likely to engage in repetitive
behaviors, more likely to interact with other mice,
and were successful in navigating mazes that differed
from those they previously solved, thereby showing enhanced behavioral flexibility.

Additional investigation revealed that these changes
were likely due to a reduction in protein production,
the levels of newly synthesized proteins in the brains
of these mice were similar to those of normal mice.


"These findings highlight an invaluable mouse model for autism in which many drugs that target eIF4E can be tested," added co-author Davide Ruggero, an associate professor at UCSF's School of Medicine and Department of Urology. "These include novel compounds that we are developing to target eIF4E hyperactivation in cancer that may also be potentially therapeutic for autistic patients."

The study's other co-authors were: Emanuela Santini, the study's lead author, Thu Huynh, Andrew MacAskill, Adam Carter, and Hanoch Kaphzan of NYU's Center for Neural Science; and Philippe Pierre of Aix-Marseille Université, INSERM, and CNRS.

The research was supported by grants from the National Institutes of Health (NS034007, NS047384, NS078718, and CA154916), a Department of Defense Congressionally Directed Medical Research Program award (W81XWH-11-1-0389), and the Wellcome Trust.

Original article: http://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2012-12/nyu-nfe122012.php