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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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August 26, 2011--------News Archive


A Question of Gene Silencing
Researchers have found a new way to selectively turn off genes that don't code for proteins which will help identify each gene's function, and perhaps identify cancers.

Scented Products Emit Hazardous Chemicals
Chemical sleuthing has uncovered that fragrance in consumer laundry products contains hazardous chemicals. Some which are even carcinogens.

August 25, 2011--------News Archive

Human Stem Cells Made From Amnionic Fluid
Human epithelial cells transplanted from human amnionic fluid reduce pulmonary fibrosis, and even stimulate lung regeneration in mice.

Scale Models Rule
Body patterns stay in sync with size as an embryo grows into an adult. Observed in the wing of the fruit fly, these patterns most likely exist in all organisms.

Chronic Disease Caused by Fat Cells?
Fat cells in people with metabolic syndrome have biomarkers for insulin resistance and chronic inflammation, conditions in diabetes and cardiovascular disease.

August 24, 2011--------News Archive

In the Early Life of An Embryo, Chaos Lurks
A calcium wave sparks embryonic cell division, doubling as a synchronizer of all further cell division in order for chaos to be reined in and ordered growth to persist.

Smoking Affects Fetal Infant Brain Worse than Feared
Researchers pin-point smoking specifically and find a 40% increase in damage to the fetus.

August 23, 2011--------News Archive

Boys Reach Sexual Maturity Younger and Younger
The phase between being physically but not socially adult is getting longer.

When Cell Fishing Games Go Wrong
Trial-and-error "fishing" for DNA in the nucleus may be the most important cause of female infertility.

A Sticky Egg Captures The Sperm
A sugar molecule makes the outer coat of a human egg 'sticky', which is vital for enabling the sperm and egg to bind together.

At Last, Reason Why Stress Damages DNA
Adreneline produced by chronic stress, degrades the protein p53 which is considered a tumor suppressor protein and "guardian of the genome."

August 22, 2011--------News Archive

The Basis for Head and Sex Organ Deformities
Data reveals a possible therapy using vitamin B2 to reverse enzyme defects is specific areas of fetal development.

Mother’s BMI Linked to Fatter Babies
Babies of mothers with a higher pre-pregnancy body mass index (BMI) are fatter and have more fat in their liver, a study has found.

Celiac Disease May Explain Some Women's Infertility
A recent study found increased rates of celiac disease in women who present with unexplained infertility.

WHO Child Growth Charts

Scientists this month reported the molecular structural basis for severe head deformities and ambiguous sex organs in babies born with Antley-Bixler syndrome accompanied by an enzyme deficiency. Antley-Bixler syndrome is a rare genetic disorder characterized by a prominent forehead, underdeveloped regions in the mid-face, protruding eyes and other abnormalities.

The team, composed of researchers from The University of Texas Health Science Center San Antonio, the Medical College of Wisconsin and Charles University in Prague, solved the atomic structure of this human enzyme with an impressive name - NADPH-cytochrome P450 reductase, abbreviated CYPOR.

The group is the first to visualize and depict the structure of the human version of CYPOR. The scientists also reported the structure of two mutations of human CYPOR that result in congenital deformities.

"Human syndromes are caused by the deficiency of this enzyme," said Bettie Sue Masters, Ph.D., D.Sc., M.D. (Hon.), professor of biochemistry and the Robert A. Welch Foundation Distinguished Professor in Chemistry at the UT Health Science Center. "The two mutations that we characterized are responsible for severe craniofacial and steroid-production defects in humans, the latter leading to sexual ambiguities."

Dr. Masters and her colleagues are studying the origins of these bone development defects.

In the body, steroids are produced for many important functions. In CYPOR deficiency, these steroidal malfunctions are related to deformed sexual organs and other defects.

The structural basis for human CYPOR deficiency is described in the Aug. 4 edition of Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

In previously published research from Dr. Masters' laboratory, addition of a riboflavin (vitamin B2) derivative reversed the defects in the mutated enzymes; this is because the vitamin makes this particular enzyme work, producing metabolites. Metabolites are the products of enzyme-generated reactions. This reversal of CYPOR defects by a riboflavin derivative is yet to be investigated in animals or humans. Foods such as liver, herbs, almonds, wheat bran, fish and cheese are rich in riboflavin.

Knowing the molecular structure of CYPOR has proved that riboflavin therapy is worth attempting, Dr. Masters said. As demonstrated by this structure, CYPOR dysfunction in patients harboring these particular mutations may possibly be prevented by riboflavin therapy within the womb, if predicted before birth, or rescued after birth in less severe cases.

For current news from the UT Health Science Center San Antonio, please visit our news release website or follow us on Twitter @uthscsa.

The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio, one of the country's leading health sciences universities, ranks in the top 3 percent of all institutions worldwide receiving federal funding. Research and other sponsored program activity totaled $228 million in fiscal year 2010. The university's schools of medicine, nursing, dentistry, health professions and graduate biomedical sciences have produced approximately 26,000 graduates. The $744 million operating budget supports eight campuses in San Antonio, Laredo, Harlingen and Edinburg. For more information on the many ways "We make lives better®," visit www.uthscsa.edu.

Original article: http://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2011-08/uoth-esr081911.php