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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 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
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November 4, 2011--------News Archive

Identifying Brain Cells That Keep Us Awake
Researchers at UCLA have identified the group of neurons that mediates whether light arouses us — or not.

TBL1X Gene Involved In Autism Spectrum Disorder
An X-chromosome-wide association study in autism families identifies TBL1X as a novel autism spectrum disorder candidate gene in males.

“Love Hormone” Helps Direct Development of Brain
Hormones released from nerves regulate a series of vital body processes, including the balance of fluids and uterine contractions in childbirth.

November 3, 2011--------News Archive

Steroids in Preemies Impair Brain Growth
Premature infants given drugs to support lung maturation and normalize blood pressure, are at increased risk for having impaired growth of the cerebellum.

Potential Treatment for Sickle Cell Disease
Increasing the expression of proteins TR2/TR4 can lead to higher fetal hemoglobin levels in sickle cell patients.

New Drug Shows Promise Against Multiple Sclerosis
A new drug targets a molecule - CD20 found on the surface of B cells and B cells seem to induce the immune system T cells to attack.

November 2, 2011--------News Archive

Babies Understand Each Other at Ten Months Old
At 10 months, babies start to understand another person’s thought process, providing new insights on how communication develops.

Bacteria Swap Genes Between Species Readily
Microbes have developed a quick and effective way to exchange genetic information from animals to humans.

Pinpointing Cause of Unexplained Miscarriage
The same kind of blood-clotting in coronary arteries or blood vessels in the brain which causes heart attacks and strokes also happens in the placenta.

November 1, 2011--------News Archive

Pregnant Mothers At Risk From Air Pollution
A Californian-based study has looked in detail at air quality and the impact of traffic-related air pollution on premature birth.

Linking A Spectrum of Childhood Diseases
An international collaboration of scientists has identified a genetic mutation causing a rare childhood disease characterized by inflammation and fat loss.

Placenta and Uterus Battle Becomes Preeclampsia
A battle brews in the mother’s womb between the father’s biological goal to produce the biggest, healthiest baby possible vs. the mother’s need to live through delivery.

October 31, 2011--------News Archive

Fetal Heart Rate Not a Good Indicator for Health
Maternal-fetal medicine specialists at Intermountain Medical Center seek better 'road map' to improve deliveries, healthier babies.

Swedish Discover Bisphenol-A Affects Newborn Brain
An observed effect induced in neonatal baby mice after exposure to Bisphenol A, persisted into adulthood.

Not Your Mother's Birth Control
Today's hormonal forms of birth control are vastly different from those used by earlier generations of women, both with lower levels of hormones and with different means of delivery (not just a pill), but many of the same problems related to women's pleasure remain.

WHO Child Growth Charts

New research suggests that the disorder named chronic atypical neutrophilic dermatosis with lipodystrophy and elevated temperature (CANDLE), is actually a spectrum of diseases that have been described in the literature under a variety of names.

More importantly, as no effective treatment for this disease exists, the findings may have uncovered a possible target for future treatments.

A collaboration began when National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases (NIAMS) rheumatologist Raphaela Goldbach-Mansky, M.D., started looking for the cause of inflammatory skin lesions, fat loss and fevers in two of her young patients.

At a scientific meeting, she learned about recent publications by two other research groups - one led by dermatologists Antonio Torrelo, M.D., from the Boy Jesus Hospital, Madrid, and Amy Paller, M.D., from Northwestern University, Chicago, and the other led by Abraham Zlotogorski, M.D., from the Hadassah-Hebrew University Medical Center, Jerusalem - describing similar conditions. She immediately located the publications’ authors and emailed them that same night.

"It turned out they had found each other and were looking for a genetic cause and additional cases," said Dr. Goldbach-Mansky. "I contacted them with a case report with pictures and they sent me theirs."

Based on the clinical presentation and, particularly, the unusual skin lesions seen in the children, the researchers suspected that the children must have the same disease. Subsequent analyses - involving biopsies, blood tests and genetic testing - confirmed their suspicions. All but one child had at least one mutation in a gene called PSMB8, which had been recently identified in three adult patients with a disease called joint contractures, muscle atrophy and panniculitis-associated lipodystrophy (JMP).

PSMB8 is one of more than 20 components involved in making a cellular structure called a proteasome, which recycles proteins from cells that are stressed or dying.

"When the proteasome doesn't function, there is a buildup of protein waste products in the cells - much like if your trash wasn't picked up each week, it would accumulate in your driveway," said Dr. Goldbach-Mansky.

The one patient without the mutation still had a blood profile that was identical to the ones who did, and showed the same accumulation of waste products in the cells seen in children with the genetic mutation. Blood tests also showed high levels of an inflammatory chemical called interferon gamma-induced protein 10 (IP-10) that is stimulated by interferons. It is produced in response to some infections, and the researchers suspect that it also may be produced in response to cellular stress.

The discovery, which is described in Arthritis & Rheumatism, unifies several different diseases into one - a spectrum of proteasome-associated autoinflammatory syndromes.

Despite the best treatments currently available - which, in most cases, consist of high doses of steroids - children with these disorders continue to lose fat and suffer metabolic changes leading to loss of muscle mass, dilated heart muscles and cardiac arrhythmias. Treatments for other inflammatory diseases have little, if any, effect on its prognoses. The group’s findings, however, suggest new therapy targets.

Researchers are currently setting up a clinical protocol targeting the interferon pathway. Physicians and parents who suspect a child may fit the criteria for CANDLE should contact Dr. Goldbach-Mansky's research group (Nicole Plass: at 301-496-2237 or plassn@mail.nih.gov).

The research was funded by the NIAMS Intramural Research Program and the Authority for Research and Development of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. Additional support was provided by the National Human Genome Research Institute (NHGRI), the National Cancer Institute (NCI), and other institutions. The researchers plan to collaborate with researchers in other institutes within NIH, including the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK) and the NHGRI. They hope to learn more about the role of the gene mutation in CANDLE that leads to the disease symptoms, and to search for the genetic cause in those children who have only one disease gene, or no disease-causing mutation, so far.

About the National Institutes of Health (NIH): NIH includes 27 Institutes and Centers and is a component of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. NIH is the primary federal agency conducting and supporting basic, clinical, and translational medical research, and is investigating the causes, treatments, and cures for both common and rare diseases. For more information about NIH and its programs, visit www.nih.gov.

Original article: http://www.nih.gov/news/health/oct2011/niams-31.htm