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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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Disclaimer: The Visible Embryo web site is provided for your general information only. The information contained on this site should not be treated as a substitute for medical, legal or other professional advice. Neither is The Visible Embryo responsible or liable for the contents of any websites of third parties which are listed on this site.
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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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April 22, 2011--------News Archive

Placental Seratonin Critical For Brain Development
For the first time, the human placenta is found to synthesize serotonin - critical to brain development, in a process that could be affected by the mother's nutrition.

Plant Hormone Reveals Molecule Critical To Embryo
The mechanism regulating embryonic development in plants displays similarities to a signalling pathway in embryonic stem cells in mammals.


April 21, 2011--------News Archive

Insecticide Linked to Decrease In Cognitive Function
Columbia Center for Children's Environmental Health at the Mailman School of Public Health report evidence of a link between prenatal exposure to the insecticide chlorpyrifos and deficits in IQ and working memory by age seven.

The ‘Core Pathway’ of Aging
Scientists find root molecular path in the decline of an aging cell.


April 20, 2011--------News Archive

'Thirdhand Smoke' Poses Danger to Unborn Lungs
Stepping outside to smoke a cigarette may not be enough to protect the lungs and life of a pregnant woman's unborn child.

A Way To Predict Premature Birth?
A new study suggests that more than 80 percent of pre-term births can be spotted in advance with a blood test taken during the second trimester of a pregnancy.


April 19, 2011--------News Archive

Ovarian Cancer May Originate in Fallopian Tube
High-grade serous ovarian cancer is thought by many scientists to often be a fallopian tube malignancy masquerading as an ovarian one.

Parents Like Genetic Testing for Their Kids
Parents offered genetic testing to predict their risks of common, adult-onset health conditions say they would also test their children.


April 18, 2011--------News Archive

Interventions Don't Always Net Healthy Newborn
High rates of induction, primary C-Section, do not always improve infant outcomes in low-risk women at community hospitals.

New Approach to Treating MLL Leukemia In Babies?
A Loyola University Health System study points to a promising new approach to treating an aggressive and usually fatal leukemia in babies.

WHO Child Growth Charts

DNA packaging MLL leukemia. Strands of DNA, in gray, are coiled around histones, spheres. MLL rearranges an enzyme called DOT1L to modify the histones, methylating them in an abnormal way (indicated in orange). Image credit: Eric Smith, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute

The study involved a type of leukemia called mixed lineage leukemia, or MLL leukemia. Only 25 to 50 percent of babies diagnosed with MLL leukemia survive.

The study demonstrated how it may be possible to kill cancerous MLL cells by targeting a protein called DOT1. Researchers showed that, without the DOT1 protein, cancerous MLL cells died, said Charles Hemenway, MD, PhD, senior author of the study.

"We are focusing on the unique biology of MLL leukemia," Hemenway said.

The study was presented at the 2011 meeting of the American Association for Cancer Research in Orlando, Fla.

Between 5 and 10 percent of all leukemias are MLL positive. In children older than 1 who have MLL leukemia, the survival rate is about 75 percent. By comparison, the survival rate for most other childhood leukemias is about 90 percent. Adults who have MLL leukemia also have lower survival rates than any other type of leukemia.

MLL leukemia is caused by a mutation in the MLL gene. The mutated gene codes for an abnormal protein, turning a blood cell into a cancer cell. For reasons researchers don't understand, MLL is more resistant to chemotherapy than other forms of leukemia.

In previous studies, Loyola researchers developed a small molecule, called PFWT, to bind to the MLL protein. By binding to the MLL protein, the PFWT molecule effectively disables the protein, causing it to die. Later this year Hemenway plans to begin testing PFWT molecules on mice with MLL leukemia.

The new study also found a second possible way to attack MLL cells, by targeting the DOT1 protein. DOT1 works together with the MLL protein and is critical for keeping MLL cancer cells alive.

After culturing MLL cells from mice, researchers removed the gene coding for the DOT1 protein without which the cancerous cells died.

Loyola researchers are collaborating with researchers from Nemours/Alfred I. duPont Hospital for Children in Wilmington, Del., to identify additional molecules that could also disable DOT1.

Hemenway feel this double-barrel approach - targeting both the DOT1 and MLL proteins - potentially could be a more effective treatment than current chemotherapy against MLL, with fewer side effects. But it will take years of additional research and testing before such a treatment would be available for patients.

Hemenway is the Ronald McDonald House Charities Endowed Professor in Pediatric Oncology and division director of Pediatric Hematology/Oncology at Loyola University Chicago Stritch School of Medicine. Other co-authors are first author Ming-Jin Chang, a visiting doctoral student at Stritch and Jeffrey Lynn, PhD, a postdoctoral researcher at Cleveland Clinic who previously studied in Hemenway's lab.

The study was supported by the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society.

Original article: LOYOLA RESEARCHERS REPORT POSSIBLE NEW APPROACH TO TREATING DEADLY LEUKEMIA IN BABIES