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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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December 2, 2011--------News Archive

Working Moms Multitask More Than Dads
Not only are working mothers multitasking more frequently than working fathers, but their multitasking experience is more negative as well.

Unlocking the Genetic Mystery of Sarcomas
Study uncovers potential targets for treating a disease affecting children and adults.

When Babies Wake, Cortisol Rises to Mom's Level
The hormone cortisol in adults rises and lowers according to stress. But in babies cortisol remains level following waking - and tunes in with mom's level.

December 1, 2011--------News Archive

Home Births – Then and Now
A comparison of home-birth trends of the 1970s finds many similarities – and some differences – related to trends in home births today.

Risk of Suicide In Pregnant Women, New Mothers
An analysis of new data highlights risk factors that could be targeted by interventions.

Addiction Damages PreFrontal Cortex
Brain structure-function impairment may be related to an inability to assess rewards and consequences, behavior associated with addiction.

November 30, 2011--------News Archive

Gene Puts Brakes On Breast Cancer Progression
Newly published research explores the role of gene in tumour suppression

‘Perfect Parent’ Not A Good Idea
Seeking perfection as a parent works better for dads than for moms.

Kindergarten Friendships Matter, Especially for Boys
High-quality friendships in kindergarten may mean that boys will have fewer behavior problems and better social skills in first and third grades.

November 29, 2011--------News Archive

Cleft Lip Corrected Genetically in Mouse Model
Scientists have successfully genetically repaired cleft lips in mice embryos specially engineered for the study of cleft lip and cleft palate.

Common Herbicide Creates Reproductive Problems
International researchers link exposure to atrazine – an herbicide widely used in the U.S. and more than 60 other nations – to reproductive problems in animals.

Environment and Diet Leave Imprints On the Heart
DNA methylation in the human heart has revealed the 'missing link' between lifestyle and health, and may indicate methylation creates the equivalent of 5, 6, 7 and 8 bases by modifying Cytosines across our entire genome.

November 28, 2011--------News Archive

Role of Nuclear Membrane Protein in Organ Growth
Scientists had thought B-type lamin proteins were vital to embryonic stem cells; but they are more critical to organ formation.

Hormone Hepcidin May Control Atherosclerosis
Hepcidin is a hormone produced by the liver and regulates iron transport. Blocking its production encourages macrophages to counter atherosclerosis.

Two Enzymes Stamp DNA with "Turn Off" Signal
Inside the cell nucleus, DNA is wound around spool-like proteins called histones. Two modifications in this attachment tell a portion of the DNA to be on or off.

WHO Child Growth Charts


In cells, methylation can be found both on the DNA (blue string) and the histones (red spools). Having both provides two signals to the cell that the gene in question should be turned off.

by Quinn Eastman

Inside the cell nucleus, DNA is wound around spool-like proteins called histones, which carry a variety of chemical modifications depending on whether the DNA should be active or shut off.

One of these modifications is methylation, the attachment of the methyl chemical group (CH3-) to a specific place on the DNA.

Researchers led by Xiaodong Cheng, PhD, professor of biochemistry, Emory University School of Medicine, have shown that Dnmt3a, an enzyme that adds methyl groups to DNA, works hand in hand with GLP, an enzyme that adds methyl groups to histones at the specific site of histone H3 lysine 9. Cheng is a Georgia Research Alliance Eminent Scholar.

The first author is postdoctoral fellow Yanqi Chang. Collaborators at the H. Lee Moffitt Cancer Center, M.D. Anderson Cancer Center and Kyoto University contributed to the paper. The results were published Nov. 15 by the journal Nature Communications.

“We found Dnmt3a is actually methylated by GLP,” Cheng says. “This modification also allows a third protein, called MPP8, to fasten Dnmt3a and GLP together. This is a molecular explanation for why DNA methylation and H3K9 methylation tend to appear together.”

Chang and co-workers used X-ray crystallography at the Argonne National Laboratory’s Advanced Photon Source and biochemical assays to examine how GLP acts on Dnmt3a and how MPP8 recognizes the other two proteins.

Both DNA methylation and H3K9 methylation are generally found on genes that are turned off. In contrast, methylation at other histone sites can be found on active genes. Changes in methylation patterns – on genes that suppress growth -- underpin a healthy cell’s transformation into a cancer cell, for example.

Methylation is part of an “epigenetic code” - information provided by the chemical modifications on the DNA, histones and the proteins surrounding the DNA, separate from the information in the DNA sequence itself.

“These protein interactions are what makes the epigenetic code consistent. Yet very little is known about the methylation of non-histone proteins,” Cheng says. “I think that many proteins will turn out to be potential substrates for enzymes that add methyl groups to proteins.”

One example was a finding by Cheng, Winship Cancer Institute researcher Paula Vertino and colleagues in 2008. They found that methylation affects the durability of the estrogen receptor, an important molecule in breast cancer cells (and healthy cells too).

The research was supported by the National Institutes of Health.

Reference: Y. Chang et al. MPP8 mediates the interacts between DNA methyltransferase Dnmt3a and H3K9 methyltransferase GLP/G9a. Nat. Commun. (2011).
Doi: 10.1038/ncomms1549

The Robert W. Woodruff Health Sciences Center of Emory University is an academic health science and service center focused on missions of teaching, research, health care and public service.

Original article:http://shared.web.emory.edu/whsc/news/releases/2011/11/hormone-that-controls-iron-levels-may-be-target-for-atherosclerosis-treatment.html