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

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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.

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


The study reveals that specific variants of three genes — called TBC1D30, KANK1 and PAM —are associated with abnormal insulin production or processing,
even in people without diabetes.







WHO Child Growth Charts

       

Genetic Clues to Insulin Production

Scientists have found three new and relatively rare genetic variants that influence insulin production, offering new clues about the genetic factors behind diabetes

The research was published online Dec. 23, 2012 in the journal Nature Genetics.

"Studying genetic variants — even rare ones — helps us learn how genes affect health and disease," said Karen Mohlke, PhD, one of the study's senior authors and associate professor of genetics at the University of North Carolina School of Medicine. "In this study, we've implicated new genes as playing a role in insulin processing and secretion."


The study is also the first time genetic insights have been
reported using exome array genotyping, a new tool that
is less costly than genetic sequencing.

This analysis allows scientists to quickly screen DNA
samples for known variants in specific genes.

It is especially helpful for testing variants that are rare.


"The exome array allowed us to test a large number of individuals — in this case, more than 8,000 people — very efficiently," said Mohlke. "We expect that this type of analysis will be useful for finding low-frequency variants associated with many complex traits, including obesity or cancer."

The scientists pulled data from a large health study directed by researchers at the University of Eastern Finland. A research team including postdoctoral scientist Jeroen Huyghe at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor led the statistical analysis, which integrated genetic data and detailed health records for a sample of 8,229 Finnish males.

Diabetes, which affects more than 25 million people in the United States, results from problems with the body's ability to produce or use insulin. Rather than pinpointing one gene behind the disease, scientists believe there are a whole host of genes that interact with health and lifestyle factors to influence a person's chances of getting the disease.


The study revealed that specific variants of three genes
— called TBC1D30, KANK1 and PAM —
are associated with abnormal insulin production or
processing, even in people without diabetes.

The genes may predispose such individuals
to developing the disease.


As a next step, the researchers plan to continue to investigate how these genes may lead to diabetes. They also expect the results will inspire other scientists to use exome analysis to look at the genetic factors behind other complex diseases.

In addition to Mohlke, the study's co-Principal Investigators included Michael Boehnke, PhD, of the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor and Markku Laakso, MD, of the University of Eastern Finland and Kuopio University Hospital.

In the U.S., funding for the research came from the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK) and the National Human Genome Research Institute (NHGRI), components of the National Institutes of Health.

Original article: http://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2012-12/uonc-nfi122112.php