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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
Google Search artcles published since 2007
 
December 30, 2011--------News Archive

Success in Making The Spinal Cord Transparent
Stimulating damaged nerve cells to regenerate has been the goal of medicine. Now it is possible to trace nerve paths in a transparent spinal cord section.

Brain Glial Cells Are Much More Than Glue
Glia cells also regulate learning and memory, new research finds.

Stress Can Slow Skin Cancer, At Least Sometimes
Chronic stress is an affliction mostly limited to modern man. However, acute stress is an important response to dangerous situations and can speed recovery.

December 29, 2011--------News Archive

FDA Warning On Change to Infant Acetaminophen
Recent dosing changes to liquid infant acetaminophen, has the FDA urging parents to read the labels. The new form of the popular pain reliever is less concentrated.

Detox Your Diet!
Harvard School of Public Health wants us all to eat food without chemicals as much as possible to avoid changing our own and our kids' body chemistry.

Discovery of Brain Cell Malfunction in Schizophrenia
Schizophrenic brains reveal less flexibility in some histones (the spools that wind DNA) blocking gene function. The problem is more pronounced in young sufferers.

December 28, 2011--------News Archive

When "A Rose by Any Other Name" Is Not
Children and adults do not classify information in the same way.

Childhood Hypersensitivity Linked to OCD
Adult onset of Obsessive Compulsive Disorder could be connected to oral and tactile sensitivities seen in childhood.

Gene Critical for Development Linked to Arrhythmia
Altering the function of a gene called Tbx3 interferes with the development of the cardiac conduction system causing potentially lethal arrhythmias of the heartbeat.

December 27, 2011--------News Archive

Reversing Autoimmune Disease in Mice
A team of scientists has turned the tables on an autoimmune disease.

An Altered Gene Tracks RNA As It Edits Neurons
Biologists use technology to observe individual differences in fruit flies

Mother-Toddler Relationship Linked to Teen Obesity
The quality of the emotional relationship between a mother and her young child could affect the potential for that child to be obese during adolescence.

December 26, 2011--------News Archive

Severe Congenital Disorder Reversed in a Mouse
Adding a sugar to water during pregnancy protects embryos from defects.

lincRNAs Pivotal In Brain Development
Long intervening non-coding RNAs (lincRNAs) play key roles during brain development in zebrafish. Now human versions are substituting for the zebrafish.

Balancing the Womb
New research hopes to explain premature births and failed inductions of labor.

WHO Child Growth Charts

What Is Your BMI?

       




In diseases such as Crohn's and rheumatoid arthritis, the immune system mistakenly attacks the body's tissues. But now scientists have managed to trick the immune systems of mice into targeting one of the body's players in autoimmune processes, an enzyme known as MMP9. The results of their research appear today in Nature Medicine.

Prof. Irit Sagi of the Biological Regulation Department and her research group have spent years looking for ways to home in on and block members of the matrix metalloproteinase (MMP) enzyme family.

These proteins cut through support materials in our bodies such as collagen, crucial for cellular mobilization, proliferation and wound healing, and more. But when some proteins, especially MMP9, get out of control, they aid and abet autoimmune disease and cancer metastasis. Blocking these proteins might lead to effective treatments for a number of diseases.

Originally, Sagi and others had designed synthetic drug molecules targeting MMPs. But these drugs had extremely severe side effects. Normal MMP inhibitors, known as TIMPs, keep enzymes in line using an arm on each TIMP precisely constructed to fit into a cleft in an enzyme sheltering the active MMP – a metal zinc ion surrounded by three histidine peptides – closing it off like a snug cork.

"Unfortunately," says Sagi, "it is quite difficult to reproduce this precision synthetically."

Dr. Netta Sela-Passwell began working on an alternative approach. She and Sagi decided to try and trick the immune system to create natural antibodies targeting MMP-9 through immunization. Immunization uses a killed virus to induce the immune system to create antibodies that attack live viruses; perhaps an MMP immunization would trick the body into creating antibodies to block the enzyme at its active site.

Together with Prof. Abraham Shanzer, they created an artificial version of the metal zinc-histidine complex at the heart of the MMP9 active site.

They injected these small, synthetic molecules into mice and afterward checked the mice's blood for signs of immune activity against the MMPs. They called antibodies they found 'metallobodies.' These were similar but not identical to TIMPS.

A detailed analysis of the 'metallobodies' atomic structure suggested they work in a similar way – reaching into the enzyme's cleft and blocking the active site. The metallobodies were selective for just two members of the MMP family – MMP2 and 9 – and bound tightly to both mouse and human versions of these enzymes.

As hoped, when they had induced an inflammatory condition mimicing Crohn's disease in mice, the symptoms were prevented when mice were treated with metallobodies.

"We are excited not only by the potential of this method to treat Crohn's," says Sagi, "but by the potential of using this approach to explore novel treatments for many other diseases."

Yeda, the technology transfer arm of the Weizmann Institute has applied for a patent for the synthetic immunization molecules as well as the generated metallobodies.

Also participating in this research were Drs. Orly Dym, Haim Rozenberg, Raanan Margalit, Rina Arad-Yellin and Tsipi Shoham of the Structural Biology, Immunology and Biological Regulation Departments, Raghavendra Kikkeri of the Organic Chemistry Department, Miriam Eisenstein of the Chemical Research Support Department, Ori Brenner of the Veterinary Resources Department and Tamar Danon of the Molecular Cell Biology Department.

Prof. Irit Sagi's research is supported by the Spencer Charitable Fund; the Leona M. and Harry B. Helmsley Charitable Trust; Cynthia Adelson, Canada; Mireille Steinberg, Canada; the Leonard and Carol Berall Post Doctoral Fellowship; and the Ilse Katz Institute for Material Sciences and Magnetic Resonance Research. Prof. Sagi is the incumbent of the Maurizio Pontecorvo Professorial Chair.

The Weizmann Institute of Science in Rehovot, Israel, is one of the world's top-ranking multidisciplinary research institutions. Noted for its wide-ranging exploration of the natural and exact sciences, the Institute is home to 2,700 scientists, students, technicians and supporting staff. Institute research efforts include the search for new ways of fighting disease and hunger, examining leading questions in mathematics and computer science, probing the physics of matter and the universe, creating novel materials and developing new strategies for protecting the environment.

Weizmann Institute news releases are posted on the World Wide Web at http://wis-wander.weizmann.ac.il/, and are also available at http://www.eurekalert.org/

Original article: http://wis-wander.weizmann.ac.il/new-synthetic-molecules-treat-autoimmune-disease-in-mice