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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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June 10, 2011--------News Archive

Hormone Test Helps Predict Success In IVF
Women with high levels of the hormone AMH produced more eggs for in vitro fertilization (IVF) procedures, and were more likely to have pregnancies.

Fragile X Protein Acts as Toggle Switch in Brain Cells
Research shows how the protein missing in fragile X syndrome – the most common inherited form of intellectual disability – acts as a molecular toggle switch in brain cells.


June 9, 2011--------News Archive

Early Light Refines the Brain’s Vision Circuitry
Light and sight are connected from the beginning.

Molecule Shared by Nervous and Vascular Systems
IRCM researchers show that a key molecule of the vascular system is essential for the formation of neural circuits.


June 8, 2011--------News Archive

Fetal Exposure to BPA Changes Uterus in Primates
Oral intake of BPA altered expression of HOX and WNT genes which are critical for uterine development.

Pregnancy Weight Gain Risks Fat Baby, Child, Adult
Women who gain too much weight during pregnancy tend to have newborns with a high amount of body fat, regardless of the mother's weight before pregnancy.


June 7, 2011--------News Archive

Exposure to BPA Has Been Underestimated
New research results indicate BPA accumulates more rapidly within the body than previously thought.

Pregnant Women Can Prevent Excess Weight Gain with Simple Steps
Women who did not self-weigh gained an average of 15.2 pounds.


June 6, 2011--------News Archive

Programming Disease by Gender
Excess maternal stress can program adverse health effects through multiple generations, especially in boys.

Birth Control Pill for Men On the Horizon?
But to make the pill a reality, research needs to show that the compound is safe, effective – and reversible.

Finding How Pre-gut Cells Become Focused
Research has outlined exactly how specific cells in sea-urchin embryos become the endoderm, the domain that eventually forms the gut.

Found, Genetic Mutation Causing Excess Hair Growth
Scientists in Beijing, China, have discovered a chromosome mutation responsible for a very rare condition in which people grow excess hair all over their bodies.

WHO Child Growth Charts

Overexposure to stress hormones in the womb can program adverse health effects into the next generation, but the effects vary depending on whether the mother or father transmits them, a new animal study suggests.

The results will be presented Saturday at The Endocrine Society's 93rd Annual Meeting in Boston.

"This research sheds light on how babies who are exposed in the womb to excessive levels of stress hormones, known as glucocorticoids, can pass on the health effects to their own children, and how the effects vary between mothers and fathers," say's principal investigator, Amanda Drake, MD, PhD, and senior clinical fellow at the University of Edinburgh in Scotland.

Glucocorticoid (glucose + cortex + steroid) levels can raise during pregnancy when a mother experiences stress or illness, receives glucocorticoid drugs for treatment of illness, or receives glucocorticoid drugs for treatment of premature labor.

Excess glucocorticoid exposure to the fetus can reduce it's birth weight and raise it's blood pressure later in life in both animals and humans. Babies born with low birth weight also become at increased risk for diabetes and heart disease in adulthood.

Using a rodent model, Drake and colleagues studied the effects of glucocorticoid overexposure by giving mice the drug dexamethasone during their last week of pregnancy. They studied the effects on the immediately exposed offspring, and then followed through by recording the effects on the following generation of offspring of the in-utero exposed mice.

Their prior research had showed that low birth weight induced by prenatal exposure to dexamethasone transmits to a second generation through the DNA of either male or female rat pup. Their new research showed that although birth weight is lower in the offspring of dexamethasone exposed fetal rats, the effect is more pronounced in the offspring of the male rats.

Additionally, although birth weight was reduced in the second generation of rat pups, the genes that were affected differed from those of their parents.

In the first generation, exposure in the womb affected genes in the placenta and in the liver of the fetus.

However, the genes affected in the second generation depended on whether the mother or the father had been exposed. The genes affected produced adverse health effects important to the transport of nutrients across the placenta.

Regarding the study, which was funded by the U.K. Medical Research Council, Drake said, "It could help inform future research to find interventions that could prevent diseases such as diabetes and high blood pressure," Drake said.

Original article: http://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2011-06/tes-fpo060311.php