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Sample records for affect fetal development

  1. Fetal jaw movement affects condylar cartilage development.

    PubMed

    Habib, H; Hatta, T; Udagawa, J; Zhang, L; Yoshimura, Y; Otani, H

    2005-05-01

    Using a mouse exo utero system to examine the effects of fetal jaw movement on the development of condylar cartilage, we assessed the effects of restraint of the animals' mouths from opening, by suture, at embryonic day (E)15.5. We hypothesized that pre-natal jaw movement is an important mechanical factor in endochondral bone formation of the mandibular condyle. Condylar cartilage was reduced in size, and the bone-cartilage margin was ill-defined in the sutured group at E18.5. Volume, total number of cells, and number of 5-bromo-2'-deoxyuridine-positive cells in the mesenchymal zone were lower in the sutured group than in the non-sutured group at E16.5 and E18.5. Hypertrophic chondrocytes were larger, whereas fewer apoptotic chondrocytes and osteoclasts were observed in the hypertrophic zone in the sutured group at E18.5. Analysis of our data revealed that restricted fetal TMJ movement influences the process of endochondral bone formation of condylar cartilage.

  2. Maternal Stress and Affect Influence Fetal Neurobehavioral Development.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    DiPietro, Janet A.; Hilton, Sterling C.; Hawkins, Melissa; Costigan, Kathleen A.; Pressman, Eva K.

    2002-01-01

    Investigated associations between maternal psychological and fetal neurobehavioral functioning with data provided at 24, 30, and 36 weeks gestation. Found that fetuses of women who were more affectively intense, appraised their lives as more stressful, and reported more pregnancy-specific hassles were more active across gestation. Fetuses of women…

  3. Altered cytokine network in gestational diabetes mellitus affects maternal insulin and placental-fetal development.

    PubMed

    Wedekind, Lauren; Belkacemi, Louiza

    2016-01-01

    Pregnancy is characterized by an altered inflammatory profile, compared to the non-pregnant state with an adequate balance between pro-and anti-inflammatory cytokines needed for normal development. Cytokines are small secreted proteins expressed mainly in immunocompetent cells in the reproductive system. From early developmental stages onward, the secretory activity of placenta cells clearly contributes to increase local as well as systemic levels of cytokines. The placental production of cytokines may affect mother and fetus independently. In turn because of this unique position at the maternal fetal interface, the placenta is also exposed to the regulatory influence of cytokines from maternal and fetal circulations, and hence, may be affected by changes in any of these. Gestational diabetes mellitus (GDM) is associated with an overall alteration of the cytokine network. This review discusses the changes that occur in cytokines post GDM and their negative effects on maternal insulin and placental-fetal development.

  4. Prenatal caffeine intake differently affects synaptic proteins during fetal brain development.

    PubMed

    Mioranzza, Sabrina; Nunes, Fernanda; Marques, Daniela M; Fioreze, Gabriela T; Rocha, Andréia S; Botton, Paulo Henrique S; Costa, Marcelo S; Porciúncula, Lisiane O

    2014-08-01

    Caffeine is the psychostimulant most consumed worldwide. However, little is known about its effects during fetal brain development. In this study, adult female Wistar rats received caffeine in drinking water (0.1, 0.3 and 1.0 g/L) during the active cycle in weekdays, two weeks before mating and throughout pregnancy. Cerebral cortex and hippocampus from embryonic stages 18 or 20 (E18 or E20, respectively) were collected for immunodetection of the following synaptic proteins: brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF), TrkB receptor, Sonic Hedgehog (Shh), Growth Associated Protein 43 (GAP-43) and Synaptosomal-associated Protein 25 (SNAP-25). Besides, the estimation of NeuN-stained nuclei (mature neurons) and non-neuronal nuclei was verified in both brain regions and embryonic periods. Caffeine (1.0 g/L) decreased the body weight of embryos at E20. Cortical BDNF at E18 was decreased by caffeine (1.0 g/L), while it increased at E20, with no major effects on TrkB receptors. In the hippocampus, caffeine decreased TrkB receptor only at E18, with no effects on BDNF. Moderate and high doses of caffeine promoted an increase in Shh in both brain regions at E18, and in the hippocampus at E20. Caffeine (0.3g/L) decreased GAP-43 only in the hippocampus at E18. The NeuN-stained nuclei increased in the cortex at E20 by lower dose and in the hippocampus at E18 by moderate dose. Our data revealed that caffeine transitorily affect synaptic proteins during fetal brain development. The increased number of NeuN-stained nuclei by prenatal caffeine suggests a possible acceleration of the telencephalon maturation. Although some modifications in the synaptic proteins were transient, our data suggest that caffeine even in lower doses may alter the fetal brain development.

  5. Aquaporins in Fetal Development.

    PubMed

    Martínez, Nora; Damiano, Alicia E

    2017-01-01

    Water homeostasis during fetal development is of crucial physiologic importance. The successful formation and development of the placenta is critical to maintain normal fetal growth and homeostasis. The expression of several aquaporins (AQPs ) was found from blastocyst stages to term placenta and fetal membranes. Therefore, AQPs are proposed to play important roles in normal pregnancy, fetal growth, and homeostasis of amniotic fluid volume, and water handling in other organs. However, the functional importance of AQPs in fetal development remains to be elucidated.

  6. Prenatal acetaminophen affects maternal immune and endocrine adaptation to pregnancy, induces placental damage, and impairs fetal development in mice.

    PubMed

    Thiele, Kristin; Solano, M Emilia; Huber, Samuel; Flavell, Richard A; Kessler, Timo; Barikbin, Roja; Jung, Roman; Karimi, Khalil; Tiegs, Gisa; Arck, Petra C

    2015-10-01

    Acetaminophen (APAP; ie, Paracetamol or Tylenol) is generally self-medicated to treat fever or pain and recommended to pregnant women by their physicians. Recent epidemiological studies reveal an association between prenatal APAP use and an increased risk for asthma. Our aim was to identify the effects of APAP in pregnancy using a mouse model. Allogeneically mated C57Bl/6J females were injected i.p. with 50 or 250 mg/kg APAP or phosphate-buffered saline on gestation day 12.5; nonpregnant females served as controls. Tissue samples were obtained 1 or 4 days after injection. APAP-induced liver toxicity was mirrored by significantly increased plasma alanine aminotransferase levels. In uterus-draining lymph nodes of pregnant dams, the frequencies of mature dendritic cells and regulatory T cells significantly increased on 250 mg/kg APAP. Plasma progesterone levels significantly decreased in dams injected with APAP, accompanied by a morphologically altered placenta. Although overall litter sizes and number of fetal loss remained unaltered, a reduced fetal weight and a lower frequency of hematopoietic stem cells in the fetal liver were observed on APAP treatment. Our data provide strong evidence that prenatal APAP interferes with maternal immune and endocrine adaptation to pregnancy, affects placental function, and impairs fetal maturation and immune development. The latter may have long-lasting consequences on children's immunity and account for the increased risk for asthma observed in humans.

  7. Decreased maternal and fetal cholesterol following maternal bococizumab (anti-PCSK9 monoclonal antibody) administration does not affect rat embryo-fetal development.

    PubMed

    Campion, Sarah N; Han, Bora; Cappon, Gregg D; Lewis, Elise M; Kraynov, Eugenia; Liang, Hong; Bowman, Christopher J

    2015-11-01

    Bococizumab is a humanized monoclonal IgG2Δa antibody against proprotein convertase subtilisin/kexin type 9 (PCSK9) for the treatment of hyperlipidemia. The evaluation of potential effects on embryo-fetal development was conducted in the rat. In a pharmacokinetic/pharmacodynamic study bococizumab was administered intravenously to pregnant Sprague-Dawley (SD) rats (n = 8/group) at 0, 10, 30, and 100 mg/kg during organogenesis. Maternal and fetal bococizumab, total cholesterol and HDL concentrations were determined. Bococizumab was well tolerated and there were no effects on ovarian or uterine parameters. Maternal and fetal bococizumab exposure increased with increasing dose, with a corresponding dose-dependent decrease in fetal cholesterol levels. Maternal cholesterol levels were decreased significantly, with reductions that were of a similar magnitude regardless of dose. In the definitive embryo-fetal development study bococizumab was administered to pregnant SD rats (n = 20/group) at 0, 10, 30, and 100 mg/kg and no adverse maternal or developmental effects were observed up to 100 mg/kg. These studies have provided an appropriate and relevant safety assessment of bococizumab in pregnant rats to inform human risk assessment, demonstrating no adverse effects on embryo-fetal development at magnitudes greater than anticipated clinical exposure and in the presence of maximal reductions in maternal cholesterol and dose-dependent reductions in fetal cholesterol.

  8. Fetal Health and Development

    MedlinePlus

    ... fetus grows and develops. There are specific prenatal tests to monitor both the mother's health and fetal health during each trimester. With modern technology, health professionals can Detect birth defects Identify problems ...

  9. Sulfate in fetal development.

    PubMed

    Dawson, Paul A

    2011-08-01

    Sulfate (SO(4)(2-)) is an important nutrient for human growth and development, and is obtained from the diet and the intra-cellular metabolism of sulfur-containing amino acids, including methionine and cysteine. During pregnancy, fetal tissues have a limited capacity to produce sulfate, and rely on sulfate obtained from the maternal circulation. Sulfate enters and exits placental and fetal cells via transporters on the plasma membrane, which maintain a sufficient intracellular supply of sulfate and its universal sulfonate donor 3'-phosphoadenosine 5'-phosphosulfate (PAPS) for sulfate conjugation (sulfonation) reactions to function effectively. Sulfotransferases mediate sulfonation of numerous endogenous compounds, including proteins and steroids, which biotransforms their biological activities. In addition, sulfonation of proteoglycans is important for maintaining normal structure and development of tissues, as shown for reduced sulfonation of cartilage proteoglycans that leads to developmental dwarfism disorders and four different osteochondrodysplasias (diastrophic dysplasia, atelosteogenesis type II, achondrogenesis type IB and multiple epiphyseal dysplasia). The removal of sulfate via sulfatases is an important step in proteoglycan degradation, and defects in several sulfatases are linked to perturbed fetal bone development, including mesomelia-synostoses syndrome and chondrodysplasia punctata 1. In recent years, interest in sulfate and its role in developmental biology has expanded following the characterisation of sulfate transporters, sulfotransferases and sulfatases and their involvement in fetal growth. This review will focus on the physiological roles of sulfate in fetal development, with links to human and animal pathophysiologies.

  10. Exposure to an environmentally relevant mixture of brominated flame retardants affects fetal development in Sprague-Dawley rats.

    PubMed

    Berger, Robert G; Lefèvre, Pavine L C; Ernest, Sheila R; Wade, Michael G; Ma, Yi-Qian; Rawn, Dorothea F K; Gaertner, Dean W; Robaire, Bernard; Hales, Barbara F

    2014-06-05

    Brominated flame retardants are incorporated into a wide variety of consumer products and are known to enter into the surrounding environment, leading to human exposure. There is accumulating evidence that these compounds have adverse effects on reproduction and development in humans and animal models. Animal studies have generally characterized the outcome of exposure to a single technical mixture or congener. Here, we determined the impact of exposure of rats prior to mating and during gestation to a mixture representative of congener levels found in North American household dust. Adult female Sprague-Dawley rats were fed a diet containing 0, 0.75, 250 or 750mg/kg of a mixture of flame retardants (polybrominated diphenyl ethers, hexabromocyclododecane) from two weeks prior to mating to gestation day 20. This formulation delivered nominal doses of 0, 0.06, 20 and 60mg/kg body weight/day. The lowest dose approximates high human exposures based on house dust levels and the dust ingestion rates of toddlers. Litter size and resorption sites were counted and fetal development evaluated. No effects on maternal health, litter size, fetal viability, weights, crown rump lengths or sex ratios were detected. The proportion of litters with fetuses with anomalies of the digits (soft tissue syndactyly or malposition of the distal phalanges) was increased significantly in the low (0.06mg/kg/day) dose group. Skeletal analysis revealed a decreased ossification of the sixth sternebra at all exposure levels. Thus, exposure to an environmentally relevant mixture of brominated flame retardants results in developmental abnormalities in the absence of apparent maternal toxicity. The relevance of these findings for predicting human risk is yet to be determined.

  11. The effects of alcohol on fetal development.

    PubMed

    Jones, Kenneth Lyons

    2011-03-01

    Prenatal exposure to alcohol has profound effects on many aspects of fetal development. Although alterations of somatic growth and specific minor malformations of facial structure are most characteristic, the effects of alcohol on brain development are most significant in that they lead to substantial problems with neurobehavioral development. Since the initial recognition of the fetal alcohol syndrome (FAS), a number of important observations have been made from studies involving both humans and animals. Of particular importance, a number of maternal risk factors have been identified, which may well be of relevance relative to the development of strategies for prevention of the FAS as well as intervention for those who have been affected. These include maternal age >30 years, ethnic group, lower socioeconomic status, having had a previously affected child, maternal under-nutrition, and genetic background. The purpose of this review is to discuss these issues as well as to set forth a number of questions that have not adequately been addressed relative to alcohol's effect on fetal development. Of particular importance is the critical need to identify the full spectrum of structural defects associated with the prenatal effects of alcohol as well as to establish a neurobehavioral phenotype. Appreciation of both of these issues is necessary to understand the full impact of alcohol on fetal development.

  12. Influence of infection during pregnancy on fetal development.

    PubMed

    Adams Waldorf, Kristina M; McAdams, Ryan M

    2013-01-01

    Infection by bacteria, viruses, and parasites may lead to fetal death, organ injury, or limited sequelae depending on the pathogen. Here, we consider the role of infection during pregnancy in fetal development including placental development and function, which can lead to fetal growth restriction. The classical group of teratogenic pathogens is referred to as 'TORCH' (Toxoplasma gondii, others like Treponema pallidum, rubella virus, cytomegalovirus, and herpes simplex virus) but should include a much broader group of pathogens including Parvovirus B19, Varicella zoster virus, and Plasmodium falciparum to name a few. In this review, we describe the influence of different infections in utero on fetal development and the short- and long-term outcomes for the neonate. In some cases, the mechanisms used by these pathogens to disrupt fetal development are well known. Bacterial infection of the developing fetal lungs and brain begins with an inflammatory cascade resulting in cytokine injury and oxidative stress. For some pathogens like P. falciparum, the mechanisms involve oxidative stress and apoptosis to disrupt placental and fetal growth. An in utero infection may also affect the long-term health of the infant; in many cases, a viral infection in utero increases the risk of developing type 1 diabetes in childhood. Understanding the varied mechanisms employed by these pathogens may enable therapies to attenuate changes in fetal development, decrease preterm birth, and improve survival.

  13. Monitoring fetal development with magnetocardiography.

    PubMed

    Padhye, N S; Brazdeikis, A; Verklan, M T

    2004-01-01

    Fetal heart rate variability (fHRV) is useful for noninvasive assessment of the status of the autonomic nervous system of the developing fetus. In this pilot study we acquired fetal magnetocardiograms (fMCG) in a magnetically shielded environment. Each recording was of 5-minute duration and was subsequently repeated in a high-frequency noise environment to examine the feasibility of conducting future recordings in clinical environments that lack facilities for magnetic shielding. The fMCG (n=17) were recorded at 9 spatial locations above the pregnant abdomen at 26 to 35 weeks gestational age (GA) by a second-order SQUID gradiometer. The signal-to-noise was adequate for reliable QRS detection even in the noisy environment, especially for GA >/= 30. The total spectral power of the RR-series, as well as band powers at low (0.05 to 0.25 Hz) and high (0.25 to 1.00 Hz) frequencies independently exhibited an increasing trend with GA. There was no evidence of bias in spectral power due to lack of shielding. These results provide experimental evidence supporting further studies in magnetically unshielded environments and may have an important implication for future clinical use of fMCG in the assessment of fHRV.

  14. Fetal Brain Behavior and Cognitive Development.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Joseph, R.

    2000-01-01

    Presents information on prenatal brain development, detailing the functions controlled by the medulla, pons, and midbrain, and the implications for cognitive development. Concludes that fetal cognitive motor activity, including auditory discrimination, orienting, the wake-sleep cycle, fetal heart rate accelerations, and defensive reactions,…

  15. Fetal Glucocorticoid Exposure is Associated with Preadolescent Brain Development

    PubMed Central

    Davis, Elysia Poggi; Sandman, Curt A.; Buss, Claudia; Wing, Deborah A.; Head, Kevin

    2013-01-01

    Background Glucocorticoids play a critical role in normative regulation of fetal brain development. Exposure to excessive levels may have detrimental consequences and disrupt maturational processes. This may especially be true when synthetic glucocorticoids are administered during the fetal period, as they are to women in preterm labor. The present study investigated the consequences for brain development and affective problems of fetal exposure to synthetic glucocorticoids. Methods Brain development and affective problems were evaluated in fifty-four children (56% female), ages 6 to 10, who were full term at birth. Children were recruited into two groups: those with and without fetal exposure to synthetic glucocorticoids. Structural magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scans were acquired and cortical thickness was determined. Child affective problems were assessed using the Child Behavior Checklist. Results Children in the fetal glucocorticoid exposure group showed significant and bilateral cortical thinning. The largest group differences were in the rostral anterior cingulate cortex (rACC). Over 30% of the rACC was thinner among children with fetal glucocorticoid exposure. Further, children with more affective problems had a thinner left rACC. Conclusions Fetal exposure to synthetic glucocorticoids has neurological consequences that persist for at least 6 to 10 years. Children with fetal glucocorticoid exposure had a thinner cortex primarily in the rACC. Our data indicating that the rACC is associated with affective problems in conjunction with evidence that this region is involved in affective disorders raises the possibility that glucocorticoid associated neurological changes increase vulnerability to mental health problems. PMID:23611262

  16. Micronutrients in fetal growth and development.

    PubMed

    McArdle, H J; Ashworth, C J

    1999-01-01

    The roles that the different vitamins and minerals play in fetal growth and development are reviewed, primarily with respect to growth and differentiation in humans; but, as appropriate, data provided from animal and cellular studies are also considered.

  17. Androgen Signaling Disruption during Fetal and Postnatal Development Affects Androgen Receptor and Connexin 43 Expression and Distribution in Adult Boar Prostate

    PubMed Central

    Hejmej, Anna; Górowska, Ewelina; Kotula-Balak, Małgorzata; Chojnacka, Katarzyna; Zarzycka, Marta; Zając, Justyna; Bilińska, Barbara

    2013-01-01

    To date, limited knowledge exists regarding the role of the androgen signaling during specific periods of development in the regulation of androgen receptor (AR) and connexin 43 (Cx43) in adult prostate. Therefore, in this study we examined mRNA and protein expression, and tissue distribution of AR and Cx43 in adult boar prostates following fetal (GD20), neonatal (PD2), and prepubertal (PD90) exposure to an antiandrogen flutamide (50 mg/kg bw). In GD20 and PD2 males we found the reduction of the luminal compartment, inflammatory changes, decreased AR and increased Cx43 expression, and altered localization of both proteins. Moreover, enhanced apoptosis and reduced proliferation were detected in the prostates of these animals. In PD90 males the alterations were less evident, except that Cx43 expression was markedly upregulated. The results presented herein indicate that in boar androgen action during early fetal and neonatal periods plays a key role in the maintenance of normal phenotype and functions of prostatic cells at adulthood. Furthermore, we demonstrated that modulation of Cx43 expression in the prostate could serve as a sensitive marker of hormonal disruption during different developmental stages. PMID:24151599

  18. Effects of melanocortins on fetal development.

    PubMed

    Simamura, Eriko; Shimada, Hiroki; Shoji, Hiroki; Otani, Hiroki; Hatta, Toshihisa

    2011-06-01

    Melanocortins, adrenocorticotropic hormone (ACTH) and α-, β-, and γ-melanocyte-stimulating hormone (MSH) are produced in the placenta and secreted into embryos/fetuses. ACTH concentrations are higher in fetal plasma than in maternal plasma and peak at mid-gestation in rats, whereas ACTH production starts in the anterior lobe of the fetal pituitary at later stages. Melanocortin receptors (MC1-5R), receptors for ACTH and α-, β- and γ-MSH, are expressed in various adult organs. The specific function of these receptors has been well examined in the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenocortical (HPA) axis and the HPA axis-like network in the skin, and anti-inflammatory effects for white blood cells have also been investigated. MC2R and/or MC5R are also expressed in the testis, lung, kidney, adrenal, liver, pancreas, brain and blood cells at different stages in mouse and rat embryos/fetuses. Melanocortins in embryos and fetuses promote maturation of the HPA axis and also contribute to the development of lung, testis, brain and blood cells. Recently, a unique ACTH function was revealed in fetuses: placental ACTH, which is secreted by the maternal leukemia inhibitory factor (LIF), and induces LIF secretion from fetal nucleated red blood cells. Finally, the maternal LIF-placental ACTH-fetal LIF signal relay regulates the LIF level and promotes neurogenesis in fetuses, which suggests that ACTH acts as a signal transducer or effector for fetal development in the maternal-fetal signal pathway.

  19. Neural crest development in fetal alcohol syndrome.

    PubMed

    Smith, Susan M; Garic, Ana; Flentke, George R; Berres, Mark E

    2014-09-01

    Fetal alcohol spectrum disorder (FASD) is a leading cause of neurodevelopmental disability. Some affected individuals possess distinctive craniofacial deficits, but many more lack overt facial changes. An understanding of the mechanisms underlying these deficits would inform their diagnostic utility. Our understanding of these mechanisms is challenged because ethanol lacks a single receptor when redirecting cellular activity. This review summarizes our current understanding of how ethanol alters neural crest development. Ample evidence shows that ethanol causes the "classic" fetal alcohol syndrome (FAS) face (short palpebral fissures, elongated upper lip, deficient philtrum) because it suppresses prechordal plate outgrowth, thereby reducing neuroectoderm and neural crest induction and causing holoprosencephaly. Prenatal alcohol exposure (PAE) at premigratory stages elicits a different facial appearance, indicating FASD may represent a spectrum of facial outcomes. PAE at this premigratory period initiates a calcium transient that activates CaMKII and destabilizes transcriptionally active β-catenin, thereby initiating apoptosis within neural crest populations. Contributing to neural crest vulnerability are their low antioxidant responses. Ethanol-treated neural crest produce reactive oxygen species and free radical scavengers attenuate their production and prevent apoptosis. Ethanol also significantly impairs neural crest migration, causing cytoskeletal rearrangements that destabilize focal adhesion formation; their directional migratory capacity is also lost. Genetic factors further modify vulnerability to ethanol-induced craniofacial dysmorphology and include genes important for neural crest development, including shh signaling, PDFGA, vangl2, and ribosomal biogenesis. Because facial and brain development are mechanistically and functionally linked, research into ethanol's effects on neural crest also informs our understanding of ethanol's CNS pathologies.

  20. Neural Crest Development in Fetal Alcohol Syndrome

    PubMed Central

    Smith, Susan M.; Garic, Ana; Flentke, George R.; Berres, Mark E.

    2016-01-01

    Fetal alcohol spectrum disorder (FASD) is a leading cause of neurodevelopmental disability. Some affected individuals possess distinctive craniofacial deficits, but many more lack overt facial changes. An understanding of the mechanisms underlying these deficits would inform their diagnostic utility. Our understanding of these mechanisms is challenged because ethanol lacks a single receptor when redirecting cellular activity. This review summarizes our current understanding of how ethanol alters neural crest development. Ample evidence shows that ethanol causes the “classic” fetal alcohol syndrome (FAS) face (short palpebral fissures, elongated upper lip, deficient philtrum) because it suppresses prechordal plate outgrowth, thereby reducing neuroectoderm and neural crest induction and causing holoprosencephaly. Prenatal alcohol exposure (PAE) at premigratory stages elicits a different facial appearance, indicating FASD may represent a spectrum of facial outcomes. PAE at this premigratory period initiates a calcium transient that activates CaMKII and destabilizes transcriptionally active β-catenin, thereby initiating apoptosis within neural crest populations. Contributing to neural crest vulnerability are their low antioxidant responses. Ethanol-treated neural crest produce reactive oxygen species, and free radical scavengers attenuate their production and prevent apoptosis. Ethanol also significantly impairs neural crest migration, causing cytoskeletal rearrangements that destabilize focal adhesion formation; their directional migratory capacity is also lost. Genetic factors further modify vulnerability to ethanol-induced craniofacial dysmorphology, and include genes important for neural crest development including shh signaling, PDFGA, vangl2, and ribosomal biogenesis. Because facial and brain development are mechanistically and functionally linked, research into ethanol’s effects on neural crest also informs our understanding of ethanol’s CNS pathologies

  1. Prolonged oral treatment with an essential amino acid L-leucine does not affect female reproductive function and embryo-fetal development in rats.

    PubMed

    Mawatari, Kazunori; Katsumata, Toyohisa; Uematsu, Masanobu; Katsumata, Tomoyoshi; Yoshida, Junichi; Smriga, Miro; Kimura, Takeshi

    2004-09-01

    L-leucine, an essential amino acid, is one of the most popular ingredients in dietary supplements. To investigate a possibility of its embryo-fetal toxicity in rats, 11- to 12-week old dams were orally administered an aqueous solution of L-leucine at doses of 300 or 1000 mg/kg body weight on gestational days 7-17. Body weight and feed intake was evaluated throughout the whole course of pregnancy (days 0-20). L-Leucine did not influence body weight, but at a dose of 1000 mg/kg, slightly enhanced feed intake on days 14 and 18 of pregnancy. Caesarean section (day 20) revealed no influences on the litter size and weight of live-born fetuses, the number of corpora lutea, implantation index or the quality of placenta, and the minor increase in feed intake was considered irrelevant to the pregnancy outcomes. Fetuses were evaluated in a battery of external, visceral and skeletal examinations. No effects of L-leucine on gender ratio and external abnormalities, and no significant treatment-related variations in visceral and skeletal pathologies were observed. These results suggested that L-leucine, administered orally during organogenesis at doses up to 1000 mg/kg body weight, did not affect the outcome of pregnancy and did not cause fetotoxicity in rats.

  2. Fetal Alcohol Syndrome and Fetal Alcohol Effects in Child Development.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Pancratz, Diane R.

    This literature review defines Fetal Alcohol Syndrome (FAS) and Fetal Alcohol Effects (FAE) and considers their causes, diagnoses, prevalence, and educational ramifications. Effects of alcohol during each of the trimesters of pregnancy are summarized. Specific diagnostic characteristics of FAS are listed: (1) growth deficiency, (2) a…

  3. Stress and Androgen Activity During Fetal Development

    PubMed Central

    Swan, Shanna H.

    2015-01-01

    Prenatal stress is known to alter hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis activity, and more recent evidence suggests that it may also affect androgen activity. In animal models, prenatal stress disrupts the normal surge of testosterone in the developing male, whereas in females, associations differ by species. In humans, studies show that (1) associations between prenatal stress and child outcomes are often sex-dependent, (2) prenatal stress predicts several disorders with notable sex differences in prevalence, and (3) prenatal exposure to stressful life events may be associated with masculinized reproductive tract development and play behavior in girls. In this minireview, we examine the existing literature on prenatal stress and androgenic activity and present new, preliminary data indicating that prenatal stress may also modify associations between prenatal exposure to diethylhexyl phthalate, (a synthetic, antiandrogenic chemical) and reproductive development in infant boys. Taken together, these data support the hypothesis that prenatal exposure to both chemical and nonchemical stressors may alter sex steroid pathways in the maternal-placental-fetal unit and ultimately alter hormone-dependent developmental endpoints. PMID:26241065

  4. Perinatal Oxidative Stress May Affect Fetal Ghrelin Levels in Humans.

    PubMed

    Luo, Zhong-Cheng; Bilodeau, Jean-François; Nuyt, Anne Monique; Fraser, William D; Julien, Pierre; Audibert, Francois; Xiao, Lin; Garofalo, Carole; Levy, Emile

    2015-12-08

    In vitro cell model studies have shown that oxidative stress may affect beta-cell function. It is unknown whether oxidative stress may affect metabolic health in human fetuses/newborns. In a singleton pregnancy cohort (n = 248), we studied maternal (24-28 weeks gestation) and cord plasma biomarkers of oxidative stress [malondialdehyde (MDA), F2-isoprostanes] in relation to fetal metabolic health biomarkers including cord plasma glucose-to-insulin ratio (an indicator of insulin sensitivity), proinsulin-to-insulin ratio (an indicator of beta-cell function), insulin, IGF-I, IGF-II, leptin, adiponectin and ghrelin concentrations. Strong positive correlations were observed between maternal and cord plasma biomarkers of oxidative stress (r = 0.33 for MDA, r = 0.74 for total F2-isoprostanes, all p < 0.0001). Adjusting for gestational age at blood sampling, cord plasma ghrelin concentrations were consistently negatively correlated to oxidative stress biomarkers in maternal (r = -0.32, p < 0.0001 for MDA; r = -0.31, p < 0.0001 for F2-isoprostanes) or cord plasma (r = -0.13, p = 0.04 for MDA; r = -0.32, p < 0.0001 for F2-isoprostanes). Other fetal metabolic health biomarkers were not correlated to oxidative stress. Adjusting for maternal and pregnancy characteristics, similar associations were observed. Our study provides the first preliminary evidence suggesting that oxidative stress may affect fetal ghrelin levels in humans. The implications in developmental "programming" the vulnerability to metabolic syndrome related disorders remain to be elucidated.

  5. DNA Methylation Landscapes of Human Fetal Development.

    PubMed

    Slieker, Roderick C; Roost, Matthias S; van Iperen, Liesbeth; Suchiman, H Eka D; Tobi, Elmar W; Carlotti, Françoise; de Koning, Eelco J P; Slagboom, P Eline; Heijmans, Bastiaan T; Chuva de Sousa Lopes, Susana M

    2015-10-01

    Remodelling the methylome is a hallmark of mammalian development and cell differentiation. However, current knowledge of DNA methylation dynamics in human tissue specification and organ development largely stems from the extrapolation of studies in vitro and animal models. Here, we report on the DNA methylation landscape using the 450k array of four human tissues (amnion, muscle, adrenal and pancreas) during the first and second trimester of gestation (9,18 and 22 weeks). We show that a tissue-specific signature, constituted by tissue-specific hypomethylated CpG sites, was already present at 9 weeks of gestation (W9). Furthermore, we report large-scale remodelling of DNA methylation from W9 to W22. Gain of DNA methylation preferentially occurred near genes involved in general developmental processes, whereas loss of DNA methylation mapped to genes with tissue-specific functions. Dynamic DNA methylation was associated with enhancers, but not promoters. Comparison of our data with external fetal adrenal, brain and liver revealed striking similarities in the trajectory of DNA methylation during fetal development. The analysis of gene expression data indicated that dynamic DNA methylation was associated with the progressive repression of developmental programs and the activation of genes involved in tissue-specific processes. The DNA methylation landscape of human fetal development provides insight into regulatory elements that guide tissue specification and lead to organ functionality.

  6. Uteroplacental circulation and fetal vascular function and development.

    PubMed

    Thornburg, Kent L; Louey, Samantha

    2013-09-01

    Although blood flow in the placental vasculature is governed by the same physiological forces of shear, pressure and resistance as in other organs, it is also uniquely specialized on the maternal and fetal sides. At the materno-fetal interface, the independent uteroplacental and umbilicoplacental circulations must coordinate sufficiently to supply the fetus with the nutrients and substrates it needs to grow and develop. Uterine arterial flow must increase dramatically to accommodate the growing fetus. Recent evidence delineates the hormonal and endothelial mechanisms by which maternal vessels dilate and remodel during pregnancy. The umbilical circulation is established de novo during embryonic development but blood does not flow through the placenta until late in the first trimester. The umbilical circulation operates in the interest of maintaining fetal oxygenation over the course of pregnancy, and is affected differently by mechanical and chemical regulators of vascular tone compared to other organs. The processes that match placental vascular growth and fetal tissue growth are not understood, but studies of compromised pregnancies provide clues. The subtle changes that cause the failure of the normally regulated vascular processes during pregnancy have not been thoroughly identified. Likewise, practical and effective therapeutic strategies to reverse detrimental placental perfusion patterns have yet to be investigated.

  7. Maternal high-fat diet is associated with impaired fetal lung development.

    PubMed

    Mayor, Reina S; Finch, Katelyn E; Zehr, Jordan; Morselli, Eugenia; Neinast, Michael D; Frank, Aaron P; Hahner, Lisa D; Wang, Jason; Rakheja, Dinesh; Palmer, Biff F; Rosenfeld, Charles R; Savani, Rashmin C; Clegg, Deborah J

    2015-08-15

    Maternal nutrition has a profound long-term impact on infant health. Poor maternal nutrition influences placental development and fetal growth, resulting in low birth weight, which is strongly associated with the risk of developing chronic diseases, including heart disease, hypertension, asthma, and type 2 diabetes, later in life. Few studies have delineated the mechanisms by which maternal nutrition affects fetal lung development. Here, we report that maternal exposure to a diet high in fat (HFD) causes placental inflammation, resulting in placental insufficiency, fetal growth restriction (FGR), and inhibition of fetal lung development. Notably, pre- and postnatal exposure to maternal HFD also results in persistent alveolar simplification in the postnatal period. Our novel findings provide a strong association between maternal diet and fetal lung development.

  8. Effects of maternal subtotal nephrectomy on the development of the fetal kidney: A morphometric study.

    PubMed

    Kondo, Tomohiro; Kitano-Amahori, Yoko; Nagai, Hiroaki; Mino, Masaki; Takeshita, Ai; Kusakabe, Ken Takeshi; Okada, Toshiya

    2015-11-01

    The present study was designed to explore if maternal subtotal (5/6) nephrectomy affects the development of fetal rat kidneys using morphometric methods and examining whether there are any apoptotic changes in the fetal kidney. To generate 5/6 nephrectomized model rats, animals underwent 2/3 left nephrectomy on gestation day (GD) 5 and total right nephrectomy on GD 12. The fetal kidneys were examined on GDs 16 and 22. A significant decrease in fetal body weight resulting from maternal 5/6 nephrectomy was observed on GD 16, and a significant decrease in fetal renal weight and fetal body weight caused by maternal nephrectomy was observed on GD 22. Maternal 5/6 nephrectomy induced a significant increase in glomerular number, proximal tubular length, and total proximal tubular volume of fetuses on GD 22. Maternal 5/6 nephrectomy resulted in an increase in the number of apoptotic cells in the metanephric mesenchyme of the kidney on GD 16, and in the collecting tubules on GD 22. These findings suggest that maternal 5/6 nephrectomy stimulates the development of the fetal kidney while suppressing fetal growth.

  9. Fetal Neurobehavioral Development: A Tale of Two Cities.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    DiPietro, Janet A.; Caulfield, Laura; Costigan, Kathleen A.; Merialdi, Mario; Nguyen, Ruby H. N.; Zavaleta, Nelly; Gurewitsch, Edith D.

    2004-01-01

    Longitudinal neurobehavioral development was examined in 237 fetuses of low-risk pregnancies from 2 distinct populations-Baltimore, Maryland, and Lima, Peru-at 20, 24, 28, 32, 36, and 38 weeks gestation. Data were based on digitized Doppler-based fetal heart rate (FHR) and fetal movement (FM). In both groups, FHR declined while variability,…

  10. Role of melatonin in embryo fetal development.

    PubMed

    Voiculescu, S E; Zygouropoulos, N; Zahiu, C D; Zagrean, A M

    2014-01-01

    Melatonin is an indoleamine produced by the pineal gland and secreted in a circadian manner. In the past few decades, research over this topic has been enhanced. Melatonin has many important roles in the human physiology: regulator of the circadian rhythms, sleep inducer, antioxidant, anticarcinogenic. This paper reviews the involvement of melatonin in embryo fetal development. The pineal gland develops completely postpartum, so both the embryo and the fetus are dependent on the maternal melatonin provided transplacentally. Melatonin appears to be involved in the normal outcome of pregnancy beginning with the oocyte quality and finishing with the parturition. Its pregnancy night-time concentrations increase after 24 weeks of gestation, with significantly high levels after 32 weeks. Melatonin receptors are widespread in the embryo and fetus since early stages. There is solid evidence that melatonin is neuroprotective and has a positive effect on the outcome of the compromised pregnancies. In addition, chronodisruption leads to a reproductive dysfunction. Thus, the influence of melatonin on the developing human fetus may not be limited to the entertaining of circadian rhythmicity, but further studies are needed.

  11. Fetal pulmonary development: the role of respiratory movements.

    PubMed

    Harding, R

    1997-06-01

    The lung develops before birth as a collapsible, liquid-filled, organ. Throughout the later stages of gestation the fetal lungs are maintained at a level of expansion that is considerably greater than the level achieved as a result of passive equilibration between lung recoil and the chest wall. Fetal breathing movements (FBM) are a feature of normal fetal life and, as such, are used clinically in the assessment of fetal wellbeing. By opposing lung recoil, FBM help to maintain the high level of lung expansion that is now known to be essential for normal growth and structural maturation of the fetal lungs. During 'apnoeic' periods between successive episodes of FBM, active laryngeal constriction has the effect of opposing lung recoil by resisting the escape of lung liquid via the trachea. The prolonged absence or impairment of FBM is likely to result in a reduced mean level of lung expansion which can lead to hypoplasia of the lungs. There is clinical evidence, disputed by some, that the absence of FBM exacerbates the effects of other factors that are associated with lung hypoplasia, such as premature rupture of fetal membranes and oligohydramnios. Even in the absence of such factors, prolonged or repeated reductions or abolition of FBM may contribute to impairments of fetal lung development; FBM can be inhibited by fetal hypoxaemia, hypoglycaemia, maternal alcohol consumption, maternal smoking, intra-amniotic infection and maternal consumption of sedatives or narcotic drugs. Abnormal growth of the fetal lungs has relevance for postnatal respiratory health as it is now recognised that there may be only a limited capacity after birth for the restoration of normal pulmonary architecture following impaired intra-uterine lung development.

  12. Influence of maternal stress on fetal behavior and brain development.

    PubMed

    Relier, J P

    2001-01-01

    The very early establishment of certain sensory faculties turns the fetus into a being capable of perceiving multiple stimuli. This perceptive capability forms part of many interchanges between the mother and her developing child. These interchanges are doubtless not only biological and metabolic in nature, but also sensorial and sensitive. The importance of a good quality of psychoaffective communication between mother and child during pregnancy has been shown to be decisive for fetal growth and also for the perinatal period and further development of the child. Maternal psychological stress leads to adverse pregnancy outcome. Chronic anxiety causes an increased stillbirth rate, fetal growth retardation and altered placental morphology. Experimental studies have demonstrated a relationship between specific episodes of maternal psychological stress and exacerbation of fetal asphyxia in utero. It is concluded that all the psychoaffective interchanges between the mother and child are decisive for harmonious fetal growth and brain development.

  13. Heart rate variability parameters and fetal movement complement fetal behavioral states detection via magnetography to monitor neurovegetative development

    PubMed Central

    Brändle, Johanna; Preissl, Hubert; Draganova, Rossitza; Ortiz, Erick; Kagan, Karl O.; Abele, Harald; Brucker, Sara Y.; Kiefer-Schmidt, Isabelle

    2015-01-01

    Fetal behavioral states are defined by fetal movement and heart rate variability (HRV). At 32 weeks of gestational age (GA) the distinction of four fetal behavioral states represented by combinations of quiet or active sleep or awakeness is possible. Prior to 32 weeks, only periods of fetal activity and quiesence can be distinguished. The increasing synchronization of fetal movement and HRV reflects the development of the autonomic nervous system (ANS) control. Fetal magnetocardiography (fMCG) detects fetal heart activity at high temporal resolution, enabling the calculation of HRV parameters. This study combined the criteria of fetal movement with the HRV analysis to complete the criteria for fetal state detection. HRV parameters were calculated including the standard deviation of the normal-to-normal R–R interval (SDNN), the mean square of successive differences of the R–R intervals (RMSSD, SDNN/RMSSD ratio, and permutation entropy (PE) to gain information about the developing influence of the ANS within each fetal state. In this study, 55 magnetocardiograms from healthy fetuses of 24–41 weeks’ GA were recorded for up to 45 min using a fetal biomagnetometer. Fetal states were classified based on HRV and movement detection. HRV parameters were calculated for each state. Before GA 32 weeks, 58.4% quiescence and 41.6% activity cycles were observed. Later, 24% quiet sleep state (1F), 65.4% active sleep state (2F), and 10.6% active awake state (4F) were observed. SDNN increased over gestation. Changes of HRV parameters between the fetal behavioral states, especially between 1F and 4F, were statistically significant. Increasing fetal activity was confirmed by a decrease in PE complexity measures. The fHRV parameters support the differentiation between states and indicate the development of autonomous nervous control of heart rate function. PMID:25904855

  14. The development of stomach during the fetal period.

    PubMed

    Cetin, Esra; Malas, Mehmet Ali; Albay, Soner; Cankara, Neslihan

    2006-10-01

    The objective of this study was to explore the fetal development of the stomach, its morphology and relationship with neighboring structures. The study is carried out in 2003 using 160 human embryos and fetuses (81 males and 79 females) aged between 9 and 40 weeks of gestation. None of the cases had any external pathology or anomaly. Its topographical localization and relationship with surrounding structures were revealed with anatomical dissections. Width and height of the stomach, lengths of the greater and lesser curvatures, the angle between horizontal and vertical axes of the stomach and types of stomach were established. During the fetal life stomach was most commonly located above the transverse axis passing through the umbilicus, in left and right hypochondrium (81%). There were significant differences among trimester groups with respect to the localization of the stomach in the quadrants (P < 0.001). There were no significant sex differences in parameters. After the second trimester, the height of the stomach increased more than the width of the stomach and anterior abdominal height. The angle of stomach decreased from 100 degrees to 50 degrees throughout the fetal period. During the fetal period, wide angles stomach was more common in the first(f) and second trimesters while acute-angled stomach was more common in the third trimester and term fetuses. Diagnosis and treatment of fetal anomalies and pathologies of the stomach requires knowledge of fetal anatomy of the stomach. Data acquired in this study are believed to contribute to the studies of obstetrics, perinatology, forensic medicine and fetal pathology on fetal development of the stomach, and diagnosis and treatment of its anomalies, pathologies, and variations.

  15. Fetal Alcohol Syndrome and the Developing Socio-Emotional Brain

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Niccols, Alison

    2007-01-01

    Fetal alcohol syndrome (FAS) is currently recognized as the most common known cause of mental retardation, affecting from 1 to 7 per 1000 live-born infants. Individuals with FAS suffer from changes in brain structure, cognitive impairments, and behavior problems. Researchers investigating neuropsychological functioning have identified deficits in…

  16. Blood borne: bacterial components in mother's blood influence fetal development.

    PubMed

    Loughran, Allister J; Tuomanen, Elaine I

    2016-01-01

    Bacterial or viral infection of the mother during the course of pregnancy can cross the placenta and actively infect the fetus. However, especially for bacteria, it is more common for mothers to experience an infection that can be treated without overt fetal infection. In this setting, it is less well understood what the risk to fetal development is, particularly in terms of neurological development. This research highlight reviews recent findings indicating that bacterial components generated during infection of the mother can cross the placenta and activate the fetal innate immune system resulting in changes in the course of brain development and subsequent progression to postnatal cognitive disorders. Bacterial cell wall is a ubiquitous bacterial PAMP (pathogen-associated molecular pattern) known to activate inflammation through the stimulation of TLR2. Cell wall is released from bacteria during antibiotic treatment and new work shows that embryos exposed to cell wall from the mother demonstrate anomalous proliferation of neuronal precursor cells in a TLR2 dependent manner. Such proliferation increases the neuronal density of the cortical plate and alters brain architecture. Although there is no fetal death, subsequent cognitive development is significantly impaired. This model system suggests that bacterial infection of the mother and its treatment can impact fetal brain development and requires greater understanding to potentially eliminate a risk factor for cognitive disorders such as autism.

  17. Maternal growth factor regulation of human placental development and fetal growth.

    PubMed

    Forbes, Karen; Westwood, Melissa

    2010-10-01

    Normal development and function of the placenta is critical to achieving a successful pregnancy, as normal fetal growth depends directly on the transfer of nutrients from mother to fetus via this organ. Recently, it has become apparent from both animal and human studies that growth factors within the maternal circulation, for example the IGFs, are important regulators of placental development and function. Although these factors act via distinct receptors to exert their effects, the downstream molecules activated upon ligand/receptor interaction are common to many growth factors. The expression of numerous signaling molecules is altered in the placentas from pregnancies affected by the fetal growth complications, fetal growth restriction, and macrosomia. Thus, targeting these molecules may lead to more effective treatments for complications of pregnancy associated with altered placental development. Here, we review the maternal growth factors required for placental development and discuss their mechanism of action.

  18. Perinatal Maternal Mental Health, Fetal Programming and Child Development.

    PubMed

    Lewis, Andrew J; Austin, Emma; Knapp, Rebecca; Vaiano, Tina; Galbally, Megan

    2015-11-26

    Maternal mental disorders over pregnancy show a clear influence on child development. This review is focused on the possible mechanisms by which maternal mental disorders influence fetal development via programming effects. This field is complex since mental health symptoms during pregnancy vary in type, timing and severity and maternal psychological distress is often accompanied by higher rates of smoking, alcohol use, poor diet and lifestyle. Studies are now beginning to examine fetal programming mechanisms, originally identified within the DOHaD framework, to examine how maternal mental disorders impact fetal development. Such mechanisms include hormonal priming effects such as elevated maternal glucocorticoids, alteration of placental function and perfusion, and epigenetic mechanisms. To date, mostly high prevalence mental disorders such as depression and anxiety have been investigated, but few studies employ diagnostic measures, and there is very little research examining the impact of maternal mental disorders such as schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, eating disorders and personality disorders on fetal development. The next wave of longitudinal studies need to focus on specific hypotheses driven by plausible biological mechanisms for fetal programming and follow children for a sufficient period in order to examine the early manifestations of developmental vulnerability. Intervention studies can then be targeted to altering these mechanisms of intergenerational transmission once identified.

  19. Perinatal Maternal Mental Health, Fetal Programming and Child Development

    PubMed Central

    Lewis, Andrew J.; Austin, Emma; Knapp, Rebecca; Vaiano, Tina; Galbally, Megan

    2015-01-01

    Maternal mental disorders over pregnancy show a clear influence on child development. This review is focused on the possible mechanisms by which maternal mental disorders influence fetal development via programming effects. This field is complex since mental health symptoms during pregnancy vary in type, timing and severity and maternal psychological distress is often accompanied by higher rates of smoking, alcohol use, poor diet and lifestyle. Studies are now beginning to examine fetal programming mechanisms, originally identified within the DOHaD framework, to examine how maternal mental disorders impact fetal development. Such mechanisms include hormonal priming effects such as elevated maternal glucocorticoids, alteration of placental function and perfusion, and epigenetic mechanisms. To date, mostly high prevalence mental disorders such as depression and anxiety have been investigated, but few studies employ diagnostic measures, and there is very little research examining the impact of maternal mental disorders such as schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, eating disorders and personality disorders on fetal development. The next wave of longitudinal studies need to focus on specific hypotheses driven by plausible biological mechanisms for fetal programming and follow children for a sufficient period in order to examine the early manifestations of developmental vulnerability. Intervention studies can then be targeted to altering these mechanisms of intergenerational transmission once identified. PMID:27417821

  20. Macro- and micromineral composition of fetal pigs and their accretion rates during fetal development.

    PubMed

    Mahan, D C; Watts, M R; St-Pierre, N

    2009-09-01

    Twenty-six crossbreed (Yorkshire x Landrace) sows bred to Duroc boars were used to determine fetal measurements and mineral compositions at various stages of gestation. Sows were fed a vitamin and mineral fortified 15% CP corn soybean meal gestation diet fed at 2.1 kg daily with dietary minerals meeting or in excess of NRC requirements. Sow and litter measurements were evaluated at 5 periods postcoitum (45, 62, 80, 100, 115 d). The experiment was conducted as a completely randomized design with 3 to 6 observations per mean. Uterine fluid and fetal tissue were collected upon slaughter from the sows during the first 4 measurement periods. The empty uterus and uterine fluid contents were weighed. Individual fetuses were weighed and their length measured. Neonatal pigs from 6 sows were killed by electric shock before colostrum consumption. The fetuses and neonates were subsequently frozen, ground, and analyzed for water, protein, ash, and fat. The mineral profile was determined for the entire litter by inductively coupled plasma analysis technology. The sow and litter was each considered the experimental unit for all measurements and mineral compositions with regression analysis determined from 45 to 115 d of gestation. Results demonstrated that fetal weight increased quadratically (P < 0.01) and uterine fluid increased quadratically (P < 0.01) from 45 to 62 d, but then declined to 100 d postcoitum. The water, protein, ash, and lipid content of the fetus increased quadratically (P < 0.01) from 45 to 115 d of development, with the greatest increase of each component occurring during the last 15 d of development. Each of the macro- and microminerals increased curvilinearly (P < 0.01) as fetal development progressed with approximately 50% of the total litter and fetal macro- and micromineral contents occurring during the last 15 d of gestation. These results indicate that there is a large increase in mineral contents of fetal pigs during late gestation and that there may

  1. Effects of Fetal Exposure to Asian Sand Dust on Development and Reproduction in Male Offspring

    PubMed Central

    Yoshida, Seiichi; Ichinose, Takamichi; Arashidani, Keiichi; He, Miao; Takano, Hirohisa; Shibamoto, Takayuki

    2016-01-01

    In recent experimental studies, we reported the aggravating effects of Asian sand dust (ASD) on male reproduction in mice. However, the effects of fetal ASD exposure on male reproduction have not been investigated. The present study investigated the effects of fetal ASD exposure on reproduction in male offspring. Using pregnant CD-1 mice, ASD was administered intratracheally on days 7 and 14 of gestation, and the reproduction of male offspring was determined at 5, 10, and 15 weeks after birth. The secondary sex ratio was significantly lower in the fetal ASD-exposed mice than in the controls. Histologic examination showed partial vacuolation of seminiferous tubules in immature mice. Moreover, daily sperm production (DSP) was significantly less in the fetal ASD-exposed mice than in the controls. DSP in the fetal ASD-exposed mice was approximately 10% less than the controls at both 5 and 10 weeks. However, both the histologic changes and the DSP decrease were reversed as the mice matured. These findings suggest that ASD exposure affects both the fetal development and the reproduction of male offspring. In the future, it will be necessary to clarify the onset mechanisms of ASD-induced male fetus death and male reproductive disorders. PMID:27886111

  2. Effects of Fetal Exposure to Asian Sand Dust on Development and Reproduction in Male Offspring.

    PubMed

    Yoshida, Seiichi; Ichinose, Takamichi; Arashidani, Keiichi; He, Miao; Takano, Hirohisa; Shibamoto, Takayuki

    2016-11-23

    In recent experimental studies, we reported the aggravating effects of Asian sand dust (ASD) on male reproduction in mice. However, the effects of fetal ASD exposure on male reproduction have not been investigated. The present study investigated the effects of fetal ASD exposure on reproduction in male offspring. Using pregnant CD-1 mice, ASD was administered intratracheally on days 7 and 14 of gestation, and the reproduction of male offspring was determined at 5, 10, and 15 weeks after birth. The secondary sex ratio was significantly lower in the fetal ASD-exposed mice than in the controls. Histologic examination showed partial vacuolation of seminiferous tubules in immature mice. Moreover, daily sperm production (DSP) was significantly less in the fetal ASD-exposed mice than in the controls. DSP in the fetal ASD-exposed mice was approximately 10% less than the controls at both 5 and 10 weeks. However, both the histologic changes and the DSP decrease were reversed as the mice matured. These findings suggest that ASD exposure affects both the fetal development and the reproduction of male offspring. In the future, it will be necessary to clarify the onset mechanisms of ASD-induced male fetus death and male reproductive disorders.

  3. Maternal thyroid hormone deficiency affects the fetal neocorticogenesis by reducing the proliferating pool, rate of neurogenesis and indirect neurogenesis.

    PubMed

    Mohan, Vishwa; Sinha, Rohit A; Pathak, Amrita; Rastogi, Leena; Kumar, Praveen; Pal, Amit; Godbole, Madan M

    2012-10-01

    Neuronal progenitor cell proliferation and their optimum number are indispensable for neurogenesis, which is determined by cell cycle length and cell cycle quitting rate of the dividing progenitors. These processes are tightly orchestrated by transcription factors like Tbr2, Pax6, and E2f-1. Radial glia and intermediate progenitor cells (IPC) through direct and indirect neurogenesis maintain surface area and neocortical thickness during development. Here we show that fetal neurogenesis is maternal thyroid hormone (MTH) dependent with differential effect on direct and indirect neurogenesis. MTH deficiency (MTHD) impairs direct neurogenesis through initial down-regulation of Pax6 and diminished progenitor pool with recovery even before the onset of fetal thyroid function (FTF). However, persistent decrease in Tbr2 positive IPCs, diminished NeuN positivity in layers I-III of neocortex, and reduced cortical thickness indicate a non-compensatory impairment in indirect neurogenesis. TH deficiency causes disrupted cell cycle kinetics and deranged neurogenesis. It specifically affects indirect neurogenesis governed by intermediate progenitor cells (IPCs). TH replacement in hypothyroid dams partially restored the rate of neurogenesis in the fetal neocortex. Taken together we describe a novel role of maternal TH in promoting IPCs derived neuronal differentiation in developing neo-cortex. We have also shown for the first time that ventricular zone progenitors are TH responsive as they express its receptor, TR alpha-1, transporters (MCT8) and deiodinases. This study highlights the importance of maternal thyroid hormone (TH) even before the start of the fetal thyroid function.

  4. Can maternal-fetal hemodynamics influence prenatal development in dogs?

    PubMed

    Freitas, Luana Azevedo de; Mota, Gustavo Lobato; Silva, Herlon Victor Rodrigues; Carvalho, Cibele Figueira; Silva, Lúcia Daniel Machado da

    2016-09-01

    The goals of this study were to report embryonic and fetal ultrasound changes and compare blood flow of uteroplacental and umbilical arteries of normal and abnormal conceptus. Accordingly, from the day of mating or artificial insemination, all fetuses in 60 pregnancies were evaluated weekly. According to the ultrasound findings, the gestational age was determined and the conceptuses were divided into normal or abnormal (embryonic and fetal abnormalities). The two-dimensional ultrasound assessment consists of measuring and evaluating the echogenicity of conceptus and extra-fetal structures. Doppler velocimetry measured the resistivity index (RI) and pulsatility index (PI) of uteroplacental and umbilical arteries. Two-dimensional and Doppler measurements were expressed as mean and standard deviation. Differences between normal and abnormal groups were subject to Mann-Whitney test (P<0.05). Of 264 fetuses, 15.90% showed embryonic abnormalities (resorption) and 5.68% presented fetal abnormalities (congenital abnormalities, fetal underdevelopment and fetal death). We observed a reduced diameter and abnormalities in the contour of gestational vesicle, lack of viability, increased placental thickness, increased fluid echogenicity and increases in RI and PI of uteroplacental arteries of conceptuses with embryonic resorption between the 2nd and 4th weeks. Fetuses with abnormalities showed changes in the flow of uteroplacental and umbilical arteries prior to visualization of two-dimensional alterations and different vascular behavior according to the classification of the change. Results show that ultrasound is efficient for the detection of embryonic and fetal abnormalities. When combined with Doppler ultrasound, it allows early detection of gestational changes, as well as hemodynamic changes, in conceptuses with abnormalities, which may influence their development.

  5. Fetal programming of infant neuromotor development: the generation R study.

    PubMed

    van Batenburg-Eddes, Tamara; de Groot, Laila; Steegers, Eric A P; Hofman, Albert; Jaddoe, Vincent W V; Verhulst, Frank C; Tiemeier, Henning

    2010-02-01

    The objective of the study was to examine whether infant neuromotor development is determined by fetal size and body symmetry in the general population. This study was embedded within the Generation R Study, a population-based cohort in Rotterdam. In 2965 fetuses, growth parameters were measured in mid-pregnancy and late pregnancy. After birth, at age 9 to 15 wks, neuromotor development was assessed with an adapted version of Touwen's Neurodevelopmental Examination. Less optimal neuromotor development was defined as a score in the highest tertile. We found that higher fetal weight was beneficial to infant neurodevelopment. A fetus with a 1-SD score higher weight in mid-pregnancy had an 11% lower risk of less optimal neuromotor development (OR: 0.89; 95% CI: 0.82-0.97). Similarly, a fetus with a 1-SD score larger abdominal-to-head circumference (AC/HC) ratio had a 13% lower risk of less optimal neuromotor development (OR: 0.87; 95% CI: 0.79-0.96). These associations were also present in late pregnancy. Our findings show that fetal size and body symmetry in pregnancy are associated with infant neuromotor development. These results suggest that differences in infant neuromotor development, a marker of behavioral and cognitive problems, are at least partly caused by processes occurring early in fetal life.

  6. Artificial oxygen carriers rescue placental hypoxia and improve fetal development in the rat pre-eclampsia model.

    PubMed

    Li, Heng; Ohta, Hidenobu; Tahara, Yu; Nakamura, Sakiko; Taguchi, Kazuaki; Nakagawa, Machiko; Oishi, Yoshihisa; Goto, Yu-Ichi; Wada, Keiji; Kaga, Makiko; Inagaki, Masumi; Otagiri, Masaki; Yokota, Hideo; Shibata, Shigenobu; Sakai, Hiromi; Okamura, Kunihiro; Yaegashi, Nobuo

    2015-10-16

    Pre-eclampsia affects approximately 5% of all pregnant women and remains a major cause of maternal and fetal morbidity and mortality. The hypertension associated with pre-eclampsia develops during pregnancy and remits after delivery, suggesting that the placenta is the most likely origin of this disease. The pathophysiology involves insufficient trophoblast invasion, resulting in incomplete narrow placental spiral artery remodeling. Placental insufficiency, which limits the maternal-fetal exchange of gas and nutrients, leads to fetal intrauterine growth restriction. In this study, in our attempt to develop a new therapy for pre-eclampsia, we directly rescued placental and fetal hypoxia with nano-scale size artificial oxygen carriers (hemoglobin vesicles). The present study is the first to demonstrate that artificial oxygen carriers successfully treat placental hypoxia, decrease maternal plasma levels of anti-angiogenic proteins and ameliorate fetal growth restriction in the pre-eclampsia rat model.

  7. Artificial oxygen carriers rescue placental hypoxia and improve fetal development in the rat pre-eclampsia model

    PubMed Central

    Li, Heng; Ohta, Hidenobu; Tahara, Yu; Nakamura, Sakiko; Taguchi, Kazuaki; Nakagawa, Machiko; Oishi, Yoshihisa; Goto, Yu-ichi; Wada, Keiji; Kaga, Makiko; Inagaki, Masumi; Otagiri, Masaki; Yokota, Hideo; Shibata, Shigenobu; Sakai, Hiromi; Okamura, Kunihiro; Yaegashi, Nobuo

    2015-01-01

    Pre-eclampsia affects approximately 5% of all pregnant women and remains a major cause of maternal and fetal morbidity and mortality. The hypertension associated with pre-eclampsia develops during pregnancy and remits after delivery, suggesting that the placenta is the most likely origin of this disease. The pathophysiology involves insufficient trophoblast invasion, resulting in incomplete narrow placental spiral artery remodeling. Placental insufficiency, which limits the maternal-fetal exchange of gas and nutrients, leads to fetal intrauterine growth restriction. In this study, in our attempt to develop a new therapy for pre-eclampsia, we directly rescued placental and fetal hypoxia with nano-scale size artificial oxygen carriers (hemoglobin vesicles). The present study is the first to demonstrate that artificial oxygen carriers successfully treat placental hypoxia, decrease maternal plasma levels of anti-angiogenic proteins and ameliorate fetal growth restriction in the pre-eclampsia rat model. PMID:26471339

  8. Endothelin-1 receptor antagonists in fetal development and pulmonary arterial hypertension.

    PubMed

    de Raaf, Michiel Alexander; Beekhuijzen, Manon; Guignabert, Christophe; Vonk Noordegraaf, Anton; Bogaard, Harm Jan

    2015-08-15

    The Pregnancy Prevention Program (PPP) is in place to prevent drug-induced developmental malformations. Remarkably, among the ten PPP-enlisted drugs are three endothelin-1 (ET-1) receptor antagonists (ERA's: ambrisentan, bosentan and macitentan), which are approved for the treatment of Pulmonary Arterial Hypertension (PAH). This review describes the effects of ERA's in PAH pathobiology and cardiopulmonary fetal development. While ERA's hamper pathological remodeling of the pulmonary vasculature and as such exert beneficial effects in PAH, they disturb fetal development of cardiopulmonary tissues. By blocking ET-1-mediated positive inotropic effects and myocardial fetal gene induction, ERA's may affect right ventricular adaptation to the increased pulmonary vascular resistance in both the fetus and the adult PAH patient.

  9. [Recent developments in fetal surgery. Technical, organizational and ethical considerations].

    PubMed

    Ville, Yves

    2008-11-01

    Progress in prenatal diagnosis has led to more frequent detection of fetal abnormalities which, if left untreated, would be fatal or cause severe disabilities despite optimal postnatal care. Intrauterine surgery is possible in selected cases. Most procedures involve microendoscopy with local or regional analgesia. Fetal analgesia is indicated for procedures that are directly invasive for the fetus. Surgical treatment of twin-to-twin transfusion is so far the only example of successful fetal therapy, as demonstrated in a randomized controlled trial. The most severe forms of congenital diaphragmatic hernia may also benefit from temporary occlusion of the fetal trachea in order to allow lung growth and prevent pulmonary hypoplasia. The future of open fetal surgery will depend partly on the results of the ongoing MOM study of intrauterine coverage of myelomeningocele. These developments also raise ethical questions, including the competence of the surgical team, and the borderline between therapeutic innovation, experimental surgery, and standard of care. The possibility of therapeutic termination should not be overlooked.

  10. Behavioral perinatology: biobehavioral processes in human fetal development.

    PubMed

    Wadhwa, Pathik D; Glynn, Laura; Hobel, Calvin J; Garite, Thomas J; Porto, Manuel; Chicz-DeMet, Aleksandra; Wiglesworth, Aileen K; Sandman, Curt A

    2002-10-15

    Behavioral perinatology is as an interdisciplinary area of research that involves conceptualization of theoretical models and conduct of empirical studies of the dynamic time-, place-, and context-dependent interplay between biological and behavioral processes in fetal, neonatal, and infant life using an epigenetic framework of development. The biobehavioral processes of particular interest to our research group relate to the effects of maternal pre- and perinatal stress and maternal-placental-fetal stress physiology. We propose that behavioral perinatology research may have important implications for a better understanding of the processes that underlie or contribute to the risk of three sets of outcomes: prematurity, adverse neurodevelopment, and chronic degenerative diseases in adulthood. Based on our understanding of the ontogeny of human fetal development and the physiology of pregnancy and fetal development, we have articulated a neurobiological model of pre- and perinatal stress. Our model proposes that chronic maternal stress may exert a significant influence on fetal developmental outcomes. Maternal stress may act via one or more of three major physiological pathways: neuroendocrine, immune/inflammatory, and vascular. We further suggest that placental corticotropin-releasing hormone (CRH) may play a central role in coordinating the effects of endocrine, immune/inflammatory, and vascular processes on fetal developmental outcomes. Finally, we hypothesize that the effects of maternal stress are modulated by the nature, duration, and timing of occurrence of stress during gestation. In this paper, we elaborate on the conceptual and empirical basis for this model, highlight some relevant issues and questions, and make recommendations for future research in this area.

  11. Deletion of the homeobox gene PRX-2 affects fetal but not adult fibroblast wound healing responses.

    PubMed

    White, Philip; Thomas, David W; Fong, Steven; Stelnicki, Eric; Meijlink, Fritz; Largman, Corey; Stephens, Phil

    2003-01-01

    The phenotype of fibroblasts repopulating experimental wounds in vivo has been shown to influence both wound healing responses and clinical outcome. Recent studies have demonstrated that the human homeobox gene PRX-2 is strongly upregulated in fibroblasts within fetal, but not adult, mesenchymal tissues during healing. Differential homeobox gene expression by fibroblasts may therefore be important in mediating the scarless healing exhibited in early fetal wounds. RNase protection analysis demonstrated that murine Prx-2 expression was involved in fetal but not adult wound healing responses in vitro. Using fibroblasts established from homozygous mutant (Prx-2-/-) and wild-type (Prx-2+/+) murine skin tissues it was demonstrated that Prx-2 affected a number of fetal fibroblastic responses believed to be important in mediating scarless healing in vivo; namely cellular proliferation, extracellular matrix reorganization, and matrix metalloproteinase 2 and hyaluronic acid production. These data demonstrate how Prx-2 may contribute to the regulation of fetal, but not adult, fibroblasts and ultimately the wound healing phenotype. This study provides further evidence for the importance of homeobox transcription factors in the regulation of scarless wound healing. A further understanding of these processes will, it is hoped, enable the targeting of specific therapies in wound healing, both to effect scarless healing and to stimulate healing in chronic, nonhealing wounds such as venous leg ulcers.

  12. Psychoneuroendocrine processes in human pregnancy influence fetal development and health.

    PubMed

    Wadhwa, Pathik D

    2005-09-01

    Individual differences in psychoneuroendocrine function play an important role in health and disease. Developmental models postulate that these individual differences evolve through a progressive series of dynamic time-, place- and context-dependent interactions between genes and environments in fetal, infant and adult life. The effects of early experience have longer-lasting and more permanent consequences than those later in life. Experimental studies in animals have provided convincing evidence to support a causal role for stress-related psychoneuroendocrine processes in negatively influencing critical developmental and health outcomes over the life span, and have also offered valuable insights into putative physiological mechanisms. However, the generalizability of these findings from animals to humans may be limited by the existence of large inter-species differences in physiology and the developmental time-line. We have initiated a program of research in behavioral perinatology and conducted studies over the past several years to examine the effects of stress-related psychoneuroendocrine processes in human pregnancy on fetal developmental and health outcomes. Our findings support a significant and independent role for maternal prenatal stress in the etiology of prematurity-related outcomes, and suggest that these effects are mediated, in part, by the maternal-placental-fetal neuroendocrine axis, and specifically by placental corticotropin-releasing hormone. Our findings also suggest that the use of a fetal challenge paradigm offers a novel way to quantify fetal neurobehavioral maturity in utero, and that the maternal environment exerts a significant influence on the fetal neurodevelopmental processes related to recognition, memory and habituation. Finally, our findings provide preliminary evidence to support the notion that the influence of prenatal stress and maternal-placental hormones on the developing fetus may persist after birth, as assessed by measures

  13. Maternal thyroid hormones early in pregnancy and fetal brain development.

    PubMed

    de Escobar, Gabriella Morreale; Obregón, María Jesús; del Rey, Francisco Escobar

    2004-06-01

    During the last few decades our understanding of the possible role of thyroid hormones during brain development has increased and contributed to resolve previously discordant hypotheses, although much remains to be clarified. Thyroid hormones of maternal origin are present in the fetal compartment, despite the very efficient uterine-placental 'barrier', necessary to avoid potentially toxic concentrations of free T4 and T3 from reaching fetal tissues before they are required for development. T3 remains low throughout pregnancy, whereas FT4 in fetal fluids increases rapidly to adult levels, and is determined by the maternal availability of T4. It is present in embryonic fluids 4 weeks after conception, with FT4 steadily increasing to biologically relevant values. T3, generated from T4 in the cerebral cortex, reaches adult values by mid-gestation and is partly bound to specific nuclear receptor isoforms. Iodothyronine deioidinases are important for the spatial and temporal regulation of T3 bioavailability, tailored to the differing and changing requirements of thyroid hormone-sensitive genes in different brain structures, but other regulatory mechanism(s) are likely to be involved. Maternal transfer constitutes a major fraction of fetal serum T4, even after onset of fetal thyroid secretion, and continues to have an important protective role in fetal neurodevelopment until birth. Prompt treatment of maternal hypothyroidism, identified by increased TSH, is being advocated to mitigate a negative effect on the woman and her child. However, even a moderate transient period of maternal hypothyroxinemia at the beginning of rat neurogenesis disrupts neuronal migration into cortical layers. These findings reinforce the epidemiological evidence that early maternal hypothyroxinemia-when neuronal migratory waves are starting-is potentially damaging for the child. Detection of an inappropiate first trimester FT4 surge that may not result in increased TSH, may be crucial for the

  14. Ghrelin and obestatin: different role in fetal lung development?

    PubMed

    Nunes, Susana; Nogueira-Silva, Cristina; Dias, Emanuel; Moura, Rute S; Correia-Pinto, Jorge

    2008-12-01

    Ghrelin and obestatin are two proteins that originate from post-translational processing of the preproghrelin peptide. Various authors claim an opposed role of ghrelin and obestatin in several systems. Preproghrelin mRNA is significantly expressed in airway epithelium throughout lung development, predominantly during the earliest stages. The aim of this study was to evaluate the role of ghrelin and obestatin in fetal lung development in vitro. Immunohistochemistry studies were performed at different gestational ages in order to clarify the expression pattern of ghrelin, GHS-R1a, obestatin and GPR39 during fetal lung development. Fetal rat lung explants were harvested at 13.5 days post-conception (dpc) and cultured during 4 days with increasing doses of total ghrelin, acylated ghrelin, desacyl-ghrelin, ghrelin antagonist (D-Lys(3)-GHRP-6) or obestatin. Immunohistochemistry studies demonstrated that ghrelin, GHS-R1a, obestatin and GPR39 proteins were expressed in primitive rat lung epithelium throughout all studied gestational ages. Total and acylated ghrelin supplementation significantly increased the total number of peripheral airway buds, whereas desacyl-ghrelin induced no effect. Moreover, GHS-R1a antagonist significantly decreased lung branching. Finally, obestatin supplementation induced no significant effect in the measured parameters. The present study showed that ghrelin has a positive effect in fetal lung development through its GHS-R1a receptor, whereas obestatin has no effect on lung branching.

  15. Fetal Health Locus of Control Scale: Development and Validation.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Labs, Sharon M.; Wurtele, Sandy K.

    1986-01-01

    Describes development of the Fetal Health Locus of Control scale, the scale's utility in predicting maternal health-related behavior during pregnancy, normative data, and information on factor structure and internal consistency. Reports that cigarette and caffeine consumption during pregnancy, and women's intentions to participate in prepared…

  16. Fetal Testosterone, Socio-Emotional Engagement and Language Development

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Farrant, Brad M.; Mattes, Eugen; Keelan, Jeff A.; Hickey, Martha; Whitehouse, Andrew J. O.

    2013-01-01

    The present study investigated the relations among fetal testosterone, child socio-emotional engagement and language development in a sample of 467 children (235 boys) from the Western Australian Pregnancy Cohort (Raine) Study. Bioavailable testosterone concentration measured in umbilical cord blood taken at birth was found to be significantly…

  17. Prenatal Foundations: Fetal Programming of Health and Development

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Davis, Elysia Poggi; Thompson, Ross A.

    2014-01-01

    The fetal programming and developmental origins of disease models suggest that experiences that occur before birth can have consequences for physical and mental health that persist across the lifespan. Development is more rapid during the prenatal period as compared to any other stage of life. This introductory article considers evidence that…

  18. Effects of proposed adipogenic factors in fetal swine sera upon preadipocyte development

    SciTech Connect

    Ramsay, T.G.; Hausman, G.J.; Martin, R.J.

    1986-03-01

    Genetic obesity has been detected in fetal pigs which suggests primary factors that cause the obesity develop prenatally. Growth hormone and thyroid hormones have been implicated as regulatory factors in fetal serum for preadipocyte differentiation. This experiment examined effects of growth hormone (GH) and thyroxine (T4) addition upon preadipocyte proliferation and differentiation when supplemented to deficient fetal pig sea. Hormones were added to decapitated fetal pig (Decap) sera to concentrations present in intact littermate (Reference) sera. Primary stromal-vascular cell cultures were prepared from rat inguinal adipose tissue. Cells were incubated with 5% decap or reference sera and hormones in media 199 during: days 1 to 5 for a /sup 3/H-thymidine incorporation assay; days 1 to 15 for assay of ..cap alpha..-glycerol phosphate dehydrogenase; days 5 to 14 for a complete differentiation assay. Decap sera promoted less proliferation and enzyme differentiation than reference sera with no effect of GH addition. GH reduced detection of lipid accumulating cells on percol density gradients by 81%. T4 addition stimulated preadipocyte multiplication and produced a 30% increase in completely differentiated preadipocytes. These results indicate thyroid hormones are important components of fetal sera for regulation of preadipocyte development, whereas GH may only affect cellular metabolism.

  19. [Consequences of smoking on fetal development and risk of intra-uterine growth retardation or in utero fetal death].

    PubMed

    Collet, M; Beillard, C

    2005-04-01

    Active and passive smoking constitutes one of the most serious public health problems due to the deleterious effect on the expected infant and the mother. These effects are dose dependent as illustrated by intra-uterine growth retardation, where the effect worsens with duration of smoking during pregnancy, and also by other conditions such as abrutio placentae or placenta praevia, premature rupture of the membranes and preterm birth, where the risk is multiplied by two (or even three)! In utero death is the ultimate sanction. Studies on the consequences of maternal smoking on fetal development have demonstrated the cardiovascular effect (CO and nicotine) and the respiratory effect (CO) which can be aggravated after birth by passive smoking. Teratogenic and cancerogenic effects have also been clearly demonstrated. Maternal smoking would also affect fetal brain development with negative effects on the major neurotransmitter systems (domaminergic, serotinergic, noradrenergic) and on the development of key structures such as the prefrontal cortex, certain limbic structures including the hippocampus and other structures implicated in motor function such as the ventral striatum. These development anomalies of the brain could give rise, after birth, to psychological, behavioral, attention and cognitive disorders, further arguments in favor of an effective anti-smoking policy including appropriate care for smoking pregnant mothers in both hospital and outpatient settings.

  20. Testing the Fetal Origins Hypothesis in a developing country: evidence from the 1918 Influenza Pandemic.

    PubMed

    Nelson, Richard E

    2010-10-01

    The 1918 Influenza Pandemic is used as a natural experiment to test the Fetal Origins Hypothesis. This hypothesis states that individual health as well as socioeconomic outcomes, such as educational attainment, employment status, and wages, are affected by the health of that individual while in utero. Repeated cross sections from the Pesquisa Mensal de Emprego (PME), a labor market survey from Brazil, are used to test this hypothesis. I find evidence to support the Fetal Origins Hypothesis. In particular, compared to individuals born in the few years surrounding the Influenza Pandemic, those who were in utero during the pandemic are less likely to be college educated, be employed, have formal employment, or know how to read and have fewer years of schooling and a lower hourly wage. These results underscore the importance of fetal health especially in developing countries.

  1. Paternal MHC expression on mouse trophoblast affects uterine vascularization and fetal growth.

    PubMed

    Madeja, Zofia; Yadi, Hakim; Apps, Richard; Boulenouar, Selma; Roper, Stephen J; Gardner, Lucy; Moffett, Ashley; Colucci, Francesco; Hemberger, Myriam

    2011-03-08

    The mammalian fetus represents a semiallograft within the maternal uterus yet is not rejected. This situation is particularly pronounced in species with a hemochorial type of placentation, such as humans and rodents, where maternal tissues and blood are in direct contact with fetal trophoblast and thus potentially with paternal antigens. The main polymorphic antigens responsible for graft rejection are MHC antigens. In humans the trophoblast cells invading into the decidua have a unique pattern of MHC class I expression characterized by both classical (HLA-C) and nonclassical (HLA-G and HLA-E) molecules. Whether such an unusual MHC repertoire on the surface of trophoblast is a conserved feature between species with hemochorial placentation has not been resolved. Here we demonstrate, using a range of methods, that C57BL/6 mouse trophoblast predominantly expresses only one MHC class I antigen, H2-K, at the cell surface of giant cells but lacks expression of nonclassical MHC molecules. Antigenic disparity between parental MHCs affects trophoblast-induced transformation of the uterine vasculature and, consequently, placental and fetal gowth. Maternal uterine blood vessels were more dilated, allowing for increased blood supply, in certain combinations of maternal and paternal MHC haplotypes, and these allogeneic fetuses and placentas were heavier at term compared with syngeneic controls. Thus, maternal-fetal immune interactions are instrumental to optimize reproductive success. This cross-talk has important implications for human disorders of pregnancy, such as preeclampsia and fetal growth restriction.

  2. Fetal Research

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hansen, John T.; Sladek, John R.

    1989-11-01

    This article reviews some of the significant contributions of fetal research and fetal tissue research over the past 20 years. The benefits of fetal research include the development of vaccines, advances in prenatal diagnosis, detection of malformations, assessment of safe and effective medications, and the development of in utero surgical therapies. Fetal tissue research benefits vaccine development, assessment of risk factors and toxicity levels in drug production, development of cell lines, and provides a source of fetal cells for ongoing transplantation trials. Together, fetal research and fetal tissue research offer tremendous potential for the treatment of the fetus, neonate, and adult.

  3. Sertoli Cell Wt1 Regulates Peritubular Myoid Cell and Fetal Leydig Cell Differentiation during Fetal Testis Development

    PubMed Central

    Wen, Qing; Wang, Yuqian; Tang, Jixin; Cheng, C. Yan; Liu, Yi-Xun

    2016-01-01

    Sertoli cells play a significant role in regulating fetal testis compartmentalization to generate testis cords and interstitium during development. The Sertoli cell Wilms’ tumor 1 (Wt1) gene, which encodes ~24 zinc finger-containing transcription factors, is known to play a crucial role in fetal testis cord assembly and maintenance. However, whether Wt1 regulates fetal testis compartmentalization by modulating the development of peritubular myoid cells (PMCs) and/or fetal Leydig cells (FLCs) remains unknown. Using a Wt1-/flox; Amh-Cre mouse model by deleting Wt1 in Sertoli cells (Wt1SC-cKO) at embryonic day 14.5 (E14.5), Wt1 was found to regulate PMC and FLC development. Wt1 deletion in fetal testis Sertoli cells caused aberrant differentiation and proliferation of PMCs, FLCs and interstitial progenitor cells from embryo to newborn, leading to abnormal fetal testis interstitial development. Specifically, the expression of PMC marker genes α-Sma, Myh11 and Des, and interstitial progenitor cell marker gene Vcam1 were down-regulated, whereas FLC marker genes StAR, Cyp11a1, Cyp17a1 and Hsd3b1 were up-regulated, in neonatal Wt1SC-cKO testes. The ratio of PMC:FLC were also reduced in Wt1SC-cKO testes, concomitant with a down-regulation of Notch signaling molecules Jag 1, Notch 2, Notch 3, and Hes1 in neonatal Wt1SC-cKO testes, illustrating changes in the differentiation status of FLC from their interstitial progenitor cells during fetal testis development. In summary, Wt1 regulates the development of FLC and interstitial progenitor cell lineages through Notch signaling, and it also plays a role in PMC development. Collectively, these effects confer fetal testis compartmentalization. PMID:28036337

  4. Ibuprofen results in alterations of human fetal testis development

    PubMed Central

    Ben Maamar, Millissia; Lesné, Laurianne; Hennig, Kristin; Desdoits-Lethimonier, Christèle; Kilcoyne, Karen R.; Coiffec, Isabelle; Rolland, Antoine D.; Chevrier, Cécile; Kristensen, David M.; Lavoué, Vincent; Antignac, Jean-Philippe; Le Bizec, Bruno; Dejucq-Rainsford, Nathalie; Mitchell, Rod T.; Mazaud-Guittot, Séverine; Jégou, Bernard

    2017-01-01

    Among pregnant women ibuprofen is one of the most frequently used pharmaceutical compounds with up to 28% reporting use. Regardless of this, it remains unknown whether ibuprofen could act as an endocrine disruptor as reported for fellow analgesics paracetamol and aspirin. To investigate this, we exposed human fetal testes (7–17 gestational weeks (GW)) to ibuprofen using ex vivo culture and xenograft systems. Ibuprofen suppressed testosterone and Leydig cell hormone INSL3 during culture of 8–9 GW fetal testes with concomitant reduction in expression of the steroidogenic enzymes CYP11A1, CYP17A1 and HSD17B3, and of INSL3. Testosterone was not suppressed in testes from fetuses younger than 8 GW, older than 10–12 GW, or in second trimester xenografted testes (14–17 GW). Ex vivo, ibuprofen also affected Sertoli cell by suppressing AMH production and mRNA expression of AMH, SOX9, DHH, and COL2A1. While PGE2 production was suppressed by ibuprofen, PGD2 production was not. Germ cell transcripts POU5F1, TFAP2C, LIN28A, ALPP and KIT were also reduced by ibuprofen. We conclude that, at concentrations relevant to human exposure and within a particular narrow ‘early window’ of sensitivity within first trimester, ibuprofen causes direct endocrine disturbances in the human fetal testis and alteration of the germ cell biology. PMID:28281692

  5. Fetal Neurobehavioral Development and the Role of Maternal Nutrient Intake and Psychological Health

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Spann, Marisa; Smerling, Jennifer; Gustafsson, Hanna C.; Foss, Sophie; Monk, Catherine

    2014-01-01

    Measuring and understanding fetal neurodevelopment provides insight regarding the developing brain. Maternal nutrient intake and psychological stress during pregnancy each impact fetal neurodevelopment and influence childhood outcomes and are thus important factors to consider when studying fetal neurobehavioral development. The authors provide an…

  6. Commercialization and Industrial Development for the Fetal Hear Rate Monitor

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Zahorian, Stephen

    2000-01-01

    The primary objectives for this task were to continue the development and testing of the NASA/ODU passive acoustic fetal heart rate monitor, with the goal of transferring the technology to the commercial sector. Areas of work included: 1. To assist in the development of a new hardware front end electronics box for the fetal heart rate monitor, so as to reduce the size of the electronics box, and also to provide for a "low-frequency" and "high-frequency" mode of operation. To make necessary changes in the operating software to support the two modes of operation. 2. To provide an option for a strip chart recording for the system, so that medical personnel could more easily make comparisons with ultra sound strip chart recordings. and 3. To help with continued testing of the system.

  7. Sex-Specific Placental Responses in Fetal Development

    PubMed Central

    2015-01-01

    The placenta is an ephemeral but critical organ for the survival of all eutherian mammals and marsupials. It is the primary messenger system between the mother and fetus, where communicational signals, nutrients, waste, gases, and extrinsic factors are exchanged. Although the placenta may buffer the fetus from various environmental insults, placental dysfunction might also contribute to detrimental developmental origins of adult health and disease effects. The placenta of one sex over the other might possess greater ability to respond and buffer against environmental insults. Given the potential role of the placenta in effecting the lifetime health of the offspring, it is not surprising that there has been a resurging interest in this organ, including the Human Placental Project launched by the National Institutes of Child Health and Human Development. In this review, we will compare embryological development of the laboratory mouse and human chorioallantoic placentae. Next, evidence that various species, including humans, exhibit normal sex-dependent structural and functional placental differences will be examined followed by how in utero environmental changes (nutritional state, stress, and exposure to environmental chemicals) might interact with fetal sex to affect this organ. Recent data also suggest that paternal state impacts placental function in a sex-dependent manner. The research to date linking placental maladaptive responses and later developmental origins of adult health and disease effects will be explored. Finally, we will focus on how sex chromosomes and epimutations may contribute to sex-dependent differences in placental function, the unanswered questions, and future directions that warrant further consideration. PMID:26241064

  8. Fetal Hippocampal Development: Analysis by Magnetic Resonance Imaging Volumetry

    PubMed Central

    Jacob, Francois Dominique; Habas, Piotr; Kim, Kio; Corbett-Detig, James; Xu, Duan; Studholme, Colin; Glenn, Orit A.

    2011-01-01

    The hippocampal formation plays an important role in learning and memory, however data on its development in utero in humans is limited. This study was performed to evaluate hippocampal development in healthy fetuses using 3D reconstructed magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). A cohort of 20 healthy pregnant women underwent prenatal MRI at a median gestational age of 24.9 weeks (range 21.3-31.9 weeks); 6 of the women also had a second fetal MRI performed at a 6 week interval. Routine 2D ultrafast T2-weighted images were used to reconstruct a 3D volume image, which was then used to manually segment the right and left hippocampi. Total hippocampal volume was calculated for each subject and compared against gestational age. There was a linear increase in total hippocampal volume with increasing gestational age (P<0.001). For subjects scanned twice, there was an increase in hippocampal size on the second fetal MRI (P=0.0004). This represents the first volumetric study of fetal hippocampal development in vivo. This normative volumetric data will be helpful for future comparison studies of suspected developmental abnormalities of hippocampal structure and function. PMID:21270675

  9. Epigenetic regulation of the placental HSD11B2 barrier and its role as a critical regulator of fetal development.

    PubMed

    Togher, Katie L; Togher, Katie L; O'Keeffe, Majella M; O'Keeffe, Majella M; Khashan, Ali S; Khashan, Ali S; Gutierrez, Humberto; Gutierrez, Humberto; Kenny, Louise C; Kenny, Louise C; O'Keeffe, Gerard W; O'Keeffe, Gerard W

    2014-06-01

    "Fetal programming" is a term used to describe how early-life experience influences fetal development and later disease risk. In humans, prenatal stress-induced fetal programming is associated with increased risk of preterm birth, and a heightened risk of metabolic and neurological diseases later in life. A critical determinant of this is the regulation of fetal exposure to glucocorticoids by the placenta. Glucocorticoids are the mediators through which maternal stress influences fetal development. Excessive fetal glucocorticoid exposure during pregnancy results in low birth weight and abnormalities in a number of tissues. The amount of fetal exposure to maternal glucocorticoids depends on the expression of HSD11B2, an enzyme predominantly produced by the syncytiotrophoblast in the placenta. This protects the fetus by converting active glucocorticoids into inactive forms. In this review we examine recent findings regarding placental HSD11B2 that suggest that its epigenetic regulation may mechanistically link maternal stress and long-term health consequences in affected offspring.

  10. Epigenetic regulation of the placental HSD11B2 barrier and its role as a critical regulator of fetal development

    PubMed Central

    Togher, Katie L; Togher, Katie L; O'Keeffe, Majella M; O'Keeffe, Majella M; Khashan, Ali S; Khashan, Ali S; Gutierrez, Humberto; Gutierrez, Humberto; Kenny, Louise C; Kenny, Louise C; O'Keeffe, Gerard W; O'Keeffe, Gerard W

    2014-01-01

    Fetal programming” is a term used to describe how early-life experience influences fetal development and later disease risk. In humans, prenatal stress-induced fetal programming is associated with increased risk of preterm birth, and a heightened risk of metabolic and neurological diseases later in life. A critical determinant of this is the regulation of fetal exposure to glucocorticoids by the placenta. Glucocorticoids are the mediators through which maternal stress influences fetal development. Excessive fetal glucocorticoid exposure during pregnancy results in low birth weight and abnormalities in a number of tissues. The amount of fetal exposure to maternal glucocorticoids depends on the expression of HSD11B2, an enzyme predominantly produced by the syncytiotrophoblast in the placenta. This protects the fetus by converting active glucocorticoids into inactive forms. In this review we examine recent findings regarding placental HSD11B2 that suggest that its epigenetic regulation may mechanistically link maternal stress and long-term health consequences in affected offspring. PMID:24717516

  11. Enhancing Learning Environments for Students Affected by Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders: An Exploratory Study of Canadian Pre-Service Teacher Knowledge and Conceptions

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Pei, Jacqueline; Job, Jenelle; Poth, Cheryl; O'Brien-Langer, Anna; Tang, Wei

    2015-01-01

    There is a pressing need for enhancing the learning environment for students affected by Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders (FASDs). To develop relevant professional learning opportunities for teachers, a logical initial step is to explore the extent to which pre-service teachers accurately understand the unique neuropsychological functioning…

  12. Genotype and fetal size affect maternal-fetal amino acid status and fetal endocrinology in Large White × Landrace and Meishan pigs.

    PubMed

    Ashworth, Cheryl J; Nwagwu, Margaret O; McArdle, Harry J

    2013-01-01

    This study compared maternal plasma amino acid concentrations, placental protein secretion in vitro and fetal body composition and plasma amino acid and hormone concentrations in feto-placental units from the smallest and a normally-sized fetus carried by Large White × Landrace or Meishan gilts on Day 100 of pregnancy. Compared with Large White × Landrace, Meishan placental tissue secreted more protein and Meishan fetuses contained relatively more fat and protein, but less moisture. Fetal plasma concentrations of insulin, triiodothryonine, thyroxine and insulin-like growth factor (IGF)-II were higher in Meishan than Large White × Landrace fetuses. In both breeds, fetal cortisol concentrations were inversely related to fetal size, whereas concentrations of IGF-I were higher in average-sized fetuses. Concentrations of 10 amino acids were higher in Large White × Landrace than Meishan gilts, while glutamine concentrations were higher in Meishan gilts. Concentrations of alanine, aspartic acid, glutamic acid and threonine were higher in Meishan than Large White × Landrace fetuses. Average-sized fetuses had higher concentrations of asparagine, leucine, lysine, phenylalanine, threonine, tyrosine and valine than the smallest fetus. This study revealed novel genotype and fetal size differences in porcine maternal-fetal amino acid status and fetal hormone and metabolite concentrations.

  13. The role of growth hormone in fetal development.

    PubMed

    Waters, M J; Kaye, P L

    2002-06-01

    Studies across several species, particularly the mouse, show that growth hormone (GH, somatotrophin) is an important determinant of litter size, and to a lesser extent, of birth length. GH acts at all stages of development, from ovulation through preimplantation development to the late fetus, with actions on both embryo/fetus and mother contributing to successful fetal development. The fact that these are not more obvious in vivo is likely a result of redundancy of cytokine hormone action, particularly in relation to prolactin, which shares common actions and receptor locations with GH.

  14. Metabolic gene profile in early human fetal heart development.

    PubMed

    Iruretagoyena, J I; Davis, W; Bird, C; Olsen, J; Radue, R; Teo Broman, A; Kendziorski, C; Splinter BonDurant, S; Golos, T; Bird, I; Shah, D

    2014-07-01

    The primitive cardiac tube starts beating 6-8 weeks post fertilization in the developing embryo. In order to describe normal cardiac development during late first and early second trimester in human fetuses this study used microarray and pathways analysis and created a corresponding 'normal' database. Fourteen fetal hearts from human fetuses between 10 and 18 weeks of gestational age (GA) were prospectively collected at the time of elective termination of pregnancy. RNA from recovered tissues was used for transcriptome analysis with Affymetrix 1.0 ST microarray chip. From the amassed data we investigated differences in cardiac development within the 10-18 GA period dividing the sample by GA in three groups: 10-12 (H1), 13-15 (H2) and 16-18 (H3) weeks. A fold change of 2 or above adjusted for a false discovery rate of 5% was used as initial cutoff to determine differential gene expression for individual genes. Test for enrichment to identify functional groups was carried out using the Gene Ontology (GO) and the Kyoto Encyclopedia of Genes and Genomes (KEGG). Array analysis correctly identified the cardiac specific genes, and transcripts reported to be differentially expressed were confirmed by qRT-PCR. Single transcript and Ontology analysis showed first trimester heart expression of myosin-related genes to be up-regulated >5-fold compared with second trimester heart. In contrast the second trimester hearts showed further gestation-related increases in many genes involved in energy production and cardiac remodeling. In conclusion, fetal heart development during the first trimester was dominated by heart-specific genes coding for myocardial development and differentiation. During the second trimester, transcripts related to energy generation and cardiomyocyte communication for contractile coordination/proliferation were more dominant. Transcripts related to fatty acid metabolism can be seen as early as 10 weeks and clearly increase as the heart matures. Retinol

  15. Imprinted gene expression in fetal growth and development.

    PubMed

    Lambertini, L; Marsit, C J; Sharma, P; Maccani, M; Ma, Y; Hu, J; Chen, J

    2012-06-01

    Experimental studies showed that genomic imprinting is fundamental in fetoplacental development by timely regulating the expression of the imprinted genes to overlook a set of events determining placenta implantation, growth and embryogenesis. We examined the expression profile of 22 imprinted genes which have been linked to pregnancy abnormalities that may ultimately influence childhood development. The study was conducted in a subset of 106 placenta samples, overrepresented with small and large for gestational age cases, from the Rhode Island Child Health Study. We investigated associations between imprinted gene expression and three fetal development parameters: newborn head circumference, birth weight, and size for gestational age. Results from our investigation show that the maternally imprinted/paternally expressed gene ZNF331 inversely associates with each parameter to drive smaller fetal size, while paternally imprinted/maternally expressed gene SLC22A18 directly associates with the newborn head circumference promoting growth. Multidimensional Scaling analysis revealed two clusters within the 22 imprinted genes which are independently associated with fetoplacental development. Our data suggest that cluster 1 genes work by assuring cell growth and tissue development, while cluster 2 genes act by coordinating these processes. Results from this epidemiologic study offer solid support for the key role of imprinting in fetoplacental development.

  16. Recent developments in fetal nucleic acids in maternal plasma: implications to noninvasive prenatal fetal blood group genotyping.

    PubMed

    Lo, Y M D

    2006-01-01

    The discovery of circulating cell-free fetal DNA in maternal plasma has opened up new possibilities for noninvasive prenatal diagnosis. Fetal DNA in maternal plasma has been used for the noninvasive prenatal determination of the RhD status of fetuses carried by RhD-negative pregnant women. In such analysis, the possible need of an internal control for the presence of detectable amounts of fetal DNA in a particular maternal plasma sample has been actively discussed. Recently, the development of a robust method for discriminating single nucleotide differences in plasma DNA using single allele base extension reaction (SABER) followed by matrix-assisted laser-desorption and ionization time-of-flight mass spectrometry (MALDI-TOF MS) has opened up the possibilities of using a panel of single nucleotide polymorphisms as such a positive control. A second approach is the recent successful development of fetal epigenetic markers which can be developed into universal fetal DNA markers. These developments hold promise to allow the eventual widespread utilization of maternal plasma DNA analysis for the noninvasive prenatal diagnosis of blood group mismatches between the mother and fetus.

  17. IGF2 DNA methylation is a modulator of newborn's fetal growth and development.

    PubMed

    St-Pierre, Julie; Hivert, Marie-France; Perron, Patrice; Poirier, Paul; Guay, Simon-Pierre; Brisson, Diane; Bouchard, Luigi

    2012-10-01

    The insulin-like growth factor 2 (IGF2) gene, located within a cluster of imprinted genes on chromosome 11p15, encodes a fetal and placental growth factor affecting birth weight. DNA methylation variability at the IGF2 gene locus has been previously reported but its consequences on fetal growth and development are still mostly unknown in normal pediatric population. We collected one hundred placenta biopsies from 50 women with corresponding maternal and cord blood samples and measured anthropometric indices, blood pressure and metabolic phenotypes using standardized procedures. IGF2/H19 DNA methylation and IGF2 circulating levels were assessed using sodium bisulfite pyrosequencing and ELISA, respectively. Placental IGF2 (DMR0 and DMR2) DNA methylation levels were correlated with newborn's fetal growth indices, such as weight, and with maternal IGF2 circulating concentration at the third trimester of pregnancy, whereas H19 (DMR) DNA methylation levels were correlated with IGF2 levels in cord blood. The maternal genotype of a known IGF2/H19 polymorphism (rs2107425) was associated with birth weight. Taken together, we showed that IGF2/H19 epigenotype and genotypes independently account for 31% of the newborn's weight variance. No association was observed with maternal diabetic status, glucose concentrations or prenatal maternal body mass index. This is the first study showing that DNA methylation at the IGF2/H19 genes locus may act as a modulator of IGF2 newborn's fetal growth and development within normal range. IGF2/H19 DNA methylation could represent a cornerstone in linking birth weight and fetal metabolic programming of late onset obesity.

  18. [Diagnosis of fetal malformations with ultrasound--state of development].

    PubMed

    Fendel, M; Fendel, H

    1983-01-01

    Ultrasonography is of great importance for the prenatal diagnosis of fetal malformations and abnormalities. An early diagnosis in the second trimester is of great interest for an intrauterine or an extrauterine therapy planning (the choice of the time and mode of delivery). Defects of the neural tube including hydrocephalus, malformations of the extremities, the gastrointestinal tract, omphaloceles, the urogenital and cardiac system are described. Four cases of fetal malformations are presented: fetal myelomeningocele, hydrocephalus, bilateral hydronephrosis and lymphangioma with fetal ascites.

  19. Fetal akinesia deformation sequence in a highly developed acardius twin.

    PubMed

    Konstantinidou, A E; Agapitos, E V; Pavlopoulos, P M; Davaris, P S

    1997-10-01

    We report a case of a holoacardius twin with extremely advanced development of the head, face, upper and lower limbs in the absence of all thoracic and upper abdominal viscera and associated with intestinal and anal atresia. The malformed fetus also had craniofacial abnormalities, hydrops, cystic hygroma of the neck, arthrogryposis and pterygia. The monozygous co-twin was found to be normal. The association of acardia with the typical characteristics of the fetal akinesia deformation sequence has not been previously described in the literature.

  20. 3D morphometric analysis of human fetal cerebellar development.

    PubMed

    Scott, Julia A; Hamzelou, Kia S; Rajagopalan, Vidya; Habas, Piotr A; Kim, Kio; Barkovich, A James; Glenn, Orit A; Studholme, Colin

    2012-09-01

    To date, growth of the human fetal cerebellum has been estimated primarily from linear measurements from ultrasound and 2D magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). In this study, we use 3D analytical methods to develop normative growth trajectories for the cerebellum in utero. We measured cerebellar volume, linear dimensions, and local surface curvature from 3D reconstructed MRI of the human fetal brain (N = 46). We found that cerebellar volume increased approximately 7-fold from 20 to 31 gestational weeks. The better fit of the exponential curve (R (2) = 0.96) compared to the linear curve (R (2) = 0.92) indicated acceleration in growth. Within-subject cerebellar and cerebral volumes were highly correlated (R (2) = 0.94), though the cerebellar percentage of total brain volume increased from approximately 2.4% to 3.7% (R (2) = 0.63). Right and left hemispheric volumes did not significantly differ. Transcerebellar diameter, vermal height, and vermal anterior to posterior diameter increased significantly at constant rates. From the local curvature analysis, we found that expansion along the inferior and superior aspects of the hemispheres resulted in decreased convexity, which is likely due to the physical constraints of the dura surrounding the cerebellum and the adjacent brainstem. The paired decrease in convexity along the inferior vermis and increased convexity of the medial hemisphere represents development of the paravermian fissure, which becomes more visible during this period. In this 3D morphometric analysis of the human fetal cerebellum, we have shown that cerebellar growth is accelerating at a greater pace than the cerebrum and described how cerebellar growth impacts the shape of the structure.

  1. 3D Morphometric Analysis of Human Fetal Cerebellar Development

    PubMed Central

    Hamzelou, Kia S.; Rajagopalan, Vidya; Habas, Piotr A.; Kim, Kio; Barkovich, A. James; Glenn, Orit A.; Studholme, Colin

    2012-01-01

    To date, growth of the human fetal cerebellum has been estimated primarily from linear measurements from ultrasound and 2D magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). In this study, we use 3D analytical methods to develop normative growth trajectories for the cerebellum in utero. We measured cerebellar volume, linear dimensions, and local surface curvature from 3D reconstructed MRI of the human fetal brain (N = 46). We found that cerebellar volume increased approximately 7-fold from 20 to 31 gestational weeks. The better fit of the exponential curve (R2 = 0.96) compared to the linear curve (R2 = 0.92) indicated acceleration in growth. Within-subject cerebellar and cerebral volumes were highly correlated (R2 = 0.94), though the cerebellar percentage of total brain volume increased from approximately 2.4% to 3.7% (R2 = 0.63). Right and left hemispheric volumes did not significantly differ. Transcerebellar diameter, vermal height, and vermal anterior to posterior diameter increased significantly at constant rates. From the local curvature analysis, we found that expansion along the inferior and superior aspects of the hemispheres resulted in decreased convexity, which is likely due to the physical constraints of the dura surrounding the cerebellum and the adjacent brainstem. The paired decrease in convexity along the inferior vermis and increased convexity of the medial hemisphere represents development of the paravermian fissure, which becomes more visible during this period. In this 3D morphometric analysis of the human fetal cerebellum, we have shown that cerebellar growth is accelerating at a greater pace than the cerebrum and described how cerebellar growth impacts the shape of the structure. PMID:22198870

  2. Gaining insight of fetal brain development with diffusion MRI and histology.

    PubMed

    Huang, Hao; Vasung, Lana

    2014-02-01

    Human brain is extraordinarily complex and yet its origin is a simple tubular structure. Its development during the fetal period is characterized by a series of accurately organized events which underlie the mechanisms of dramatic structural changes during fetal development. Revealing detailed anatomy at different stages of human fetal brain development provides insight on understanding not only this highly ordered process, but also the neurobiological foundations of cognitive brain disorders such as mental retardation, autism, schizophrenia, bipolar and language impairment. Diffusion tensor imaging (DTI) and histology are complementary tools which are capable of delineating the fetal brain structures at both macroscopic and microscopic levels. In this review, the structural development of the fetal brains has been characterized with DTI and histology. Major components of the fetal brain, including cortical plate, fetal white matter and cerebral wall layer between the ventricle and subplate, have been delineated with DTI and histology. Anisotropic metrics derived from DTI were used to quantify the microstructural changes during the dynamic process of human fetal cortical development and prenatal development of other animal models. Fetal white matter pathways have been traced with DTI-based tractography to reveal growth patterns of individual white matter tracts and corticocortical connectivity. These detailed anatomical accounts of the structural changes during fetal period may provide the clues of detecting developmental and cognitive brain disorders at their early stages. The anatomical information from DTI and histology may also provide reference standards for diagnostic radiology of premature newborns.

  3. Psychoneuroimmunology in pregnancy: immune pathways linking stress with maternal health, adverse birth outcomes, and fetal development.

    PubMed

    Christian, Lisa M

    2012-01-01

    It is well-established that psychological stress promotes immune dysregulation in nonpregnant humans and animals. Stress promotes inflammation, impairs antibody responses to vaccination, slows wound healing, and suppresses cell-mediated immune function. Importantly, the immune system changes substantially to support healthy pregnancy, with attenuation of inflammatory responses and impairment of cell-mediated immunity. This adaptation is postulated to protect the fetus from rejection by the maternal immune system. Thus, stress-induced immune dysregulation during pregnancy has unique implications for both maternal and fetal health, particularly preterm birth. However, very limited research has examined stress-immune relationships in pregnancy. The application of psychoneuroimmunology research models to the perinatal period holds great promise for elucidating biological pathways by which stress may affect adverse pregnancy outcomes, maternal health, and fetal development.

  4. Prenatal ethanol exposure disrupts the histological stages of fetal bone development.

    PubMed

    Snow, M E; Keiver, K

    2007-08-01

    Maternal ethanol intake during pregnancy results in impairments in general growth and skeletal development in the offspring. We have previously shown that ethanol retards skeletal ossification at doses lower than those that affect growth. Moreover, skeletal sites vary in their sensitivity to ethanol effects, with more severe effects occurring in bones that undergo a greater proportion of their development in utero. Taken together, these data suggest that ethanol has specific effects on bone development, and that later stages in the ossification process may be particularly affected. Such effects could have important implications for the offspring's long-term bone health, as studies suggest that the intrauterine environment can program the skeleton. The present study examined the histological stages of bone development to determine if prenatal ethanol exposure alters the morphological development of the growth plate in the fetal rat. Rats were fed a liquid diet containing ethanol (Ethanol, E group), or without ethanol (Pair-Fed, PF, or Control, C groups) for 6 weeks: 3 weeks prior to breeding and during 3 weeks of pregnancy. Fetal tibiae were fixed, decalcified and stained for histological analysis on day 21 of gestation. Maternal ethanol intake resulted in a significant decrease in fetal total bone and diaphysis lengths, compared with tibiae from PF and C fetuses. Although the lengths of the epiphyses were not affected, ethanol disrupted the organization of the histological zones within the epiphyses. Prenatal ethanol exposure decreased the length of the resting zone, but increased the length of the hypertrophic zone. Enlargement of the hypertrophic zone is consistent with an effect of ethanol on the later stages of bone development; however, ethanol's effect on the resting zone indicates that earlier stages of bone development may also be disrupted. The functional significance of these morphological changes to long-term bone health remains to be determined.

  5. Restrictive dermopathy and fetal behaviour.

    PubMed

    Mulder, E J; Beemer, F A; Stoutenbeek, P

    2001-07-01

    We report three siblings from consecutive pregnancies affected with restrictive dermopathy (RD). During the second pregnancy, fetal behavioural development and growth were studied extensively using ultrasound at 1-4 week intervals. Dramatic and sudden changes occurred in fetal body movements and growth but not until the end of the second trimester of pregnancy. Prominent at that time were prolonged periods of fetal quiescence and very low heart rate variability, together with abnormally executed body movements of short duration. Retarded femoral development and jerky abrupt fetal body movements (abnormal movement quality) were already present in the early second trimester of pregnancy. Facial anomalies emerged despite the presence of fetal mouth movements. The clinical features of RD were only partly explained by present knowledge of skin development and the fetal akinesia deformation sequence hypothesis. Quantitative assessment of fetal movements proved to be a poor early marker for antenatal diagnosis of this disorder.

  6. Effects of psychologic stress on fetal development and pregnancy outcome.

    PubMed

    Koubovec, D; Geerts, L; Odendaal, H J; Stein, Dan J; Vythilingum, B

    2005-08-01

    Data from animal studies show that maternal stress is associated with disturbances in pregnancy outcomes and offspring development and behavior, possibly as a result of permanent structural and functional changes termed "early-life programming." There is growing interest in whether similar relationships are present in humans. Here we review recent significant findings from the literature on the impact of prenatal psychologic stressors on pregnancy outcome and offspring development, with a particular focus on the developing brain. Relevant papers were searched using PubMed, and reference lists from obtained articles were checked. In humans, prenatal stress is associated with pregnancy complications, developmental, cognitive, and behavioral disorders, and possible onset of psychopathology in later life. In contrast to the available research done in animals, virtually nothing is known about the effects of prenatal stress on morphologic fetal brain development, and the mechanisms underlying subsequent associated behavioral changes.

  7. Subclinical decelerations during developing hypotension in preterm fetal sheep after acute on chronic lipopolysaccharide exposure

    PubMed Central

    Lear, Christopher A.; Davidson, Joanne O.; Galinsky, Robert; Yuill, Caroline A.; Wassink, Guido; Booth, Lindsea C.; Drury, Paul P.; Bennet, Laura; Gunn, Alistair J.

    2015-01-01

    Subclinical (shallow) heart rate decelerations occur during neonatal sepsis, but there is limited information on their relationship with hypotension or whether they occur before birth. We examined whether subclinical decelerations, a fall in fetal heart rate (FHR) that remained above 100 bpm, were associated with hypotension in preterm fetal sheep exposed to lipopolysaccharide (LPS). Chronically-instrumented fetal sheep at 0.7 gestation received continuous low-dose LPS infusions (n = 15, 100 ng/kg over 24 h, followed by 250 ng/kg/24 h for 96 h) or saline (n = 8). Boluses of 1 μg LPS or saline were given at 48 and 72 h. FHR variability (FHRV) was calculated, and sample asymmetry was used to assess the severity and frequency of decelerations. Low-dose LPS infusion did not affect FHR. After the first LPS bolus, 7 fetuses remained normotensive, while 8 developed hypotension (a fall in mean arterial blood pressure of ≥5 mmHg). Developing hypotension was associated with subclinical decelerations, with a corresponding increase in sample asymmetry and FHRV (p < 0.05). The second LPS bolus was associated with similar but attenuated changes in FHR and blood pressure (p < 0.05). In conclusion, subclinical decelerations are not consistently seen during prenatal exposure to LPS, but may be a useful marker of developing inflammation-related hypotension before birth. PMID:26537688

  8. Fetal akinesia.

    PubMed

    Hammond, E; Donnenfeld, A E

    1995-03-01

    Normal fetal growth and development during pregnancy is highly dependent upon adequate fetal movement. Limitation of movement, regardless of the underlying cause, can result in a particular pattern of abnormal fetal morphogenesis. This phenotype is termed the fetal akinesia deformation sequence (FADS). The etiology of fetal akinesia may be generally classified into one of five categories: neuropathy, myopathy, restrictive dermopathy, teratogen exposure, or restricted movement due to intrauterine constraint. In this article, the differential diagnosis of fetal akinesia is systematically reviewed and information regarding prenatal diagnosis, prognosis, perinatal management, and recurrence risks are discussed.

  9. Embryologic and Fetal Development of the Human Eyelid

    PubMed Central

    Abdulhafez, Mohamed H.; Fouad, Yousef A.; Dutton, Jonathan J.

    2016-01-01

    Purpose: To review the recent data about eyelid morphogenesis, and outline a timeline for eyelid development from the very early stages during embryonic life till final maturation of the eyelid late in fetal life. Methods: The authors extensively review major studies detailing human embryologic and fetal eyelid morphogenesis. These studies span almost a century and include some more recent cadaver studies. Numerous studies in the murine model have helped to better understand the molecular signals that govern eyelid embryogenesis. The authors summarize the current findings in molecular biology, and highlight the most significant studies in mice regarding the multiple and interacting signaling pathways involved in regulating normal eyelid morphogenesis. Results: Eyelid morphogenesis involves a succession of subtle yet strictly regulated morphogenetic episodes of tissue folding, proliferation, contraction, and even migration, which may occur simultaneously or in succession. Conclusions: Understanding the extraordinary process of building eyelid tissue in embryonic life, and deciphering its underlying signaling machinery has far reaching clinical implications beyond understanding the developmental abnormalities involving the eyelids, and may pave the way for achieving scar-reducing therapies in adult mammalian wounds, or control the spread of malignancies. PMID:27124372

  10. Fetal programming of sexual development and reproductive function.

    PubMed

    Zambrano, Elena; Guzmán, Carolina; Rodríguez-González, Guadalupe L; Durand-Carbajal, Marta; Nathanielsz, Peter W

    2014-01-25

    The recent growth of interest in developmental programming of physiological systems has generally focused on the cardiovascular system (especially hypertension) and predisposition to metabolic dysfunction (mainly obesity and diabetes). However, it is now clear that the full range of altered offspring phenotypes includes impaired reproductive function. In rats, sheep and nonhuman primates, reproductive capacity is altered by challenges experienced during critical periods of development. This review will examine available experimental evidence across commonly studied experimental species for developmental programming of female and male reproductive function throughout an individual's life-course. It is necessary to consider events that occur during fetal development, early neonatal life and prior to and during puberty, during active reproductive life and aging as reproductive performance declines.

  11. Developing Effective Affective Assessment Practices

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Glennon, William; Hart, Aaron; Foley, John T.

    2015-01-01

    Physical educators generally understand the importance of the affective domain for student growth and development. However, many teachers struggle with assessing affective behaviors in a way that can be documented and reported. The five-step process outlined in this article can assist teachers in developing an effective way to assess the affective…

  12. The effect of maternal nutrition level during the periconception period on fetal muscle development and plasma hormone concentrations in sheep.

    PubMed

    Sen, U; Sirin, E; Yildiz, S; Aksoy, Y; Ulutas, Z; Kuran, M

    2016-10-01

    The effect of maternal nutrition level during the periconception period on the muscle development of fetus and maternal-fetal plasma hormone concentrations in sheep were examined. Estrus was synchronized in 55 Karayaka ewes and were either fed ad libitum (well-fed, WF, n=23) or 0.5×maintenance (under-fed, UF, n=32) 6 days before and 7 days after mating. Non-pregnant ewes (WF, n=13; UF, n=24) and ewes carrying twins (WF, n=1) and female (WF, n=1; UF, n=3) fetuses were removed from the experiment. The singleton male fetuses from well-fed (n=8) and under-fed (n=5) ewes were collected on day 90 of gestation and placental characteristics, fetal BWs and dimensions, fetal organs and muscles weights were recorded. Maternal (on day 7 after mating) and fetal (on day 90 of pregnancy) blood samples were collected to analyze plasma hormone concentrations. Placental characteristics, BW and dimensions, organs and muscles weights of fetuses were not affected by maternal feed intake during the periconception period. Maternal nutrition level did not affect fiber numbers and the muscle cross-sectional area of the fetal longissimus dorsi (LD), semitendinosus (ST) muscles, but the cross-sectional area of the secondary fibers in the fetal LD and ST muscles from the UF ewes were higher than those from the WF ewes (P<0.05). Also, the ratio of secondary to primary fibers in the ST muscle were tended to be lower in the fetuses from the UF ewes (P=0.07). Maternal nutrition level during the periconception period did not cause any significant changes in fetal plasma insulin and maternal and fetal plasma IGF-I, cortisol, progesterone, free T3 and T4 concentrations. However, maternal cortisol concentrations were lower while insulin concentrations were higher in the WF ewes than those in the UF ewes (P<0.05). These results indicate that the reduced maternal feed intake during the periconception period may alter muscle fiber diameter without affecting fiber types, fetal weights and organ

  13. Fetal development assessed by heart rate patterns--time scales of complex autonomic control.

    PubMed

    Hoyer, Dirk; Nowack, Samuel; Bauer, Stephan; Tetschke, Florian; Ludwig, Stefan; Moraru, Liviu; Rudoph, Anja; Wallwitz, Ulrike; Jaenicke, Franziska; Haueisen, Jens; Schleussner, Ekkehard; Schneider, Uwe

    2012-03-01

    The increasing functional integrity of the organism during fetal maturation is connected with increasing complex internal coordination. We hypothesize that time scales of complexity and dynamics of heart rate patterns reflect the increasing inter-dependencies within the fetal organism during its prenatal development. We investigated multi-scale complexity, time irreversibility and fractal scaling from 73 fetal magnetocardiographic 30min recordings over the third trimester. We found different scale dependent complexity changes, increasing medium scale time irreversibility, and increasing long scale fractal correlations (all changes p<0.05). The results confirm the importance of time scales to be considered in fetal heart rate based developmental indices.

  14. Fetal endocrinology

    PubMed Central

    Kota, Sunil Kumar; Gayatri, Kotni; Jammula, Sruti; Meher, Lalit Kumar; Kota, Siva Krishna; Krishna, S. V. S.; Modi, Kirtikumar D.

    2013-01-01

    Successful outcome of pregnancy depends upon genetic, cellular, and hormonal interactions, which lead to implantation, placentation, embryonic, and fetal development, parturition and fetal adaptation to extrauterine life. The fetal endocrine system commences development early in gestation and plays a modulating role on the various physiological organ systems and prepares the fetus for life after birth. Our current article provides an overview of the current knowledge of several aspects of this vast field of fetal endocrinology and the role of endocrine system on transition to extrauterine life. We also provide an insight into fetal endocrine adaptations pertinent to various clinically important situations like placental insufficiency and maternal malnutrition. PMID:23961471

  15. Development and significance of a fetal electrocardiogram recorded by signal-averaged high-amplification electrocardiography.

    PubMed

    Hayashi, Risa; Nakai, Kenji; Fukushima, Akimune; Itoh, Manabu; Sugiyama, Toru

    2009-03-01

    Although ultrasonic diagnostic imaging and fetal heart monitors have undergone great technological improvements, the development and use of fetal electrocardiograms to evaluate fetal arrhythmias and autonomic nervous activity have not been fully established. We verified the clinical significance of the novel signal-averaged vector-projected high amplification ECG (SAVP-ECG) method in fetuses from 48 gravidas at 32-41 weeks of gestation and in 34 neonates. SAVP-ECGs from fetuses and newborns were recorded using a modified XYZ-leads system. Once noise and maternal QRS waves were removed, the P, QRS, and T wave intervals were measured from the signal-averaged fetal ECGs. We also compared fetal and neonatal heart rates (HRs), coefficients of variation of heart rate variability (CV) as a parasympathetic nervous activity, and the ratio of low to high frequency (LF/HF ratio) as a sympathetic nervous activity. The rate of detection of a fetal ECG by SAVP-ECG was 72.9%, and the fetal and neonatal QRS and QTc intervals were not significantly different. The neonatal CVs and LF/HF ratios were significantly increased compared with those in the fetus. In conclusion, we have developed a fetal ECG recording method using the SAVP-ECG system, which we used to evaluate autonomic nervous system development.

  16. Poisonous plants: effects on embryo and fetal development.

    PubMed

    Panter, Kip E; Welch, Kevin D; Gardner, Dale R; Green, Benedict T

    2013-12-01

    Poisonous plant research in the United States began over 100 years ago as a result of livestock losses from toxic plants as settlers migrated westward with their flocks, herds, and families. Major losses were soon associated with poisonous plants, such as locoweeds, selenium accumulating plants, poison-hemlock, larkspurs, Veratrum, lupines, death camas, water hemlock, and others. Identification of plants associated with poisoning, chemistry of the plants, physiological effects, pathology, diagnosis, and prognosis, why animals eat the plants, and grazing management to mitigate losses became the overarching mission of the current Poisonous Plant Research Laboratory. Additionally, spin-off benefits resulting from the animal research have provided novel compounds, new techniques, and animal models to study human health conditions (biomedical research). The Poisonous Plant Research Laboratory has become an international leader of poisonous plant research as evidenced by the recent completion of the ninth International Symposium on Poisonous Plant Research held July 2013 in Hohhot, Inner Mongolia, China. In this article, we review plants that negatively impact embryo/fetal and neonatal growth and development, with emphasis on those plants that cause birth defects. Although this article focuses on the general aspects of selected groups of plants and their effects on the developing offspring, a companion paper in this volume reviews current understanding of the physiological, biochemical, and molecular mechanisms of toxicoses and teratogenesis.

  17. Development of the human fetal hippocampal formation during early second trimester

    PubMed Central

    Ge, Xinting; Shi, Yonggang; Li, Junning; Zhang, Zhonghe; Lin, Xiangtao; Zhan, Jinfeng; Ge, Haitao; Xu, Junhai; Yu, Qiaowen; Leng, Yuan; Teng, Gaojun; Feng, Lei; Meng, Haiwei; Tang, Yuchun; Zang, Fengchao; Toga, Arthur W.; Liu, Shuwei

    2015-01-01

    Development of the fetal hippocampal formation has been difficult to fully describe because of rapid changes in its shape during the fetal period. The aims of this study were to: (1) segment the fetal hippocampal formation using 7.0 T MR images from 41 specimens with gestational ages ranging from 14 to 22 weeks and (2) reveal the developmental course of the fetal hippocampal formation using volume and shape analyses. Differences in hemispheric volume were observed, with the right hippocampi being larger than the left. Absolute volume changes showed a linear increase, while relative volume changes demonstrated an inverted-U shape trend during this period. Together these exhibited a variable developmental rate among different regions of the fetal brain. Different sub-regional growth of the fetal hippocampal formation was specifically observed using shape analysis. The fetal hippocampal formation possessed a prominent medial–lateral bidirectional shape growth pattern during its rotation process. Our results provide additional insight into 3D hippocampal morphology in the assessment of fetal brain development and can be used as a reference for future hippocampal studies. PMID:26123377

  18. TET1 contributes to neurogenesis onset time during fetal brain development in mice.

    PubMed

    Kim, Hyerim; Jang, Woo Young; Kang, Min-Cheol; Jeong, Jain; Choi, Minjee; Sung, Yonghun; Park, Song; Kwon, Wookbong; Jang, Soyoung; Kim, Myoung Ok; Kim, Sung Hyun; Ryoo, Zae Young

    2016-03-18

    Epigenetic mechanisms are relevant to development and contribute to fetal neurogenesis. DNA methylation and demethylation contribute to neural gene expression during mouse brain development. Ten-eleven translocation 1 (TET1) regulates DNA demethylation by converting 5-methylcytosine (5mC) to 5-hydroxymethylcytosine (5hmC). TET1 specifically regulates 5hmC in the central nervous system (CNS), including during neurogenesis in the adult brain. However little is known about its function in fetal neurogenesis. In order to evaluate the role of TET1 in fetal brain development, we generated TET1-overexpressing transgenic (TG) mice. TET1 overexpression was confirmed in the brains of fetal mice, and we detected 5hmC overexpression in the TG brains compared to that in the wild type (WT) brains, using a dot-blot assay. In order to observe the role of TET1 in fetal brain development, we examined fetal brain samples at varied time points by using real-time PCR, Western blotting, and Immunofluorescence (IF). We confirmed that TET1 contributes to neurogenesis by upregulating the protein expressions of neuronal markers in the TG mouse brains, as determined by Western blotting. However the cortex structure or brain mass between WT and TG mice showed no significant difference by IF. In conclusion, TET1 makes the start time of neurogenesis earlier in the TG brains compared to that in the WT brains during fetal brain development.

  19. Protein restriction during pregnancy affects maternal liver lipid metabolism and fetal brain lipid composition in the rat.

    PubMed

    Torres, Nimbe; Bautista, Claudia J; Tovar, Armando R; Ordáz, Guillermo; Rodríguez-Cruz, Maricela; Ortiz, Victor; Granados, Omar; Nathanielsz, Peter W; Larrea, Fernando; Zambrano, Elena

    2010-02-01

    Suboptimal developmental environments program offspring to lifelong metabolic problems. The aim of this study was to determine the impact of protein restriction in pregnancy on maternal liver lipid metabolism at 19 days of gestation (dG) and its effect on fetal brain development. Control (C) and restricted (R) mothers were fed with isocaloric diets containing 20 and 10% of casein. At 19 dG, maternal blood and livers and fetal livers and brains were collected. Serum insulin and leptin levels were determinate in mothers. Maternal and fetal liver lipid and fetal brain lipid quantification were performed. Maternal liver and fetal brain fatty acids were quantified by gas chromatography. In mothers, liver desaturase and elongase mRNAs were measured by RT-PCR. Maternal body and liver weights were similar in both groups. However, fat body composition, including liver lipids, was lower in R mothers. A higher fasting insulin at 19 dG in the R group was observed (C = 0.2 +/- 0.04 vs. R = 0.9 +/- 0.16 ng/ml, P < 0.01) and was inversely related to early growth retardation. Serum leptin in R mothers was significantly higher than that observed in C rats (C = 5 +/- 0.1 vs. R = 7 +/- 0.7 ng/ml, P < 0.05). In addition, protein restriction significantly reduced gene expression in maternal liver of desaturases and elongases and the concentration of arachidonic (AA) and docosahexanoic (DHA) acids. In fetus from R mothers, a low body weight (C = 3 +/- 0.3 vs. R = 2 +/- 0.1 g, P < 0.05), as well as liver and brain lipids, including the content of DHA in the brain, was reduced. This study showed that protein restriction during pregnancy may negatively impact normal fetal brain development by changes in maternal lipid metabolism.

  20. Development of fetal intestinal length during 2nd-trimester in normal and pathologic pregnancies.

    PubMed

    Marnerides, Andreas; Ghazi, Sam; Sundberg, Anders; Papadogiannakis, Nikos

    2012-01-01

    Linear growth of the human fetal gastrointestinal tract is not often discussed in the literature, and little is known about the effects of chromosomal abnormalities and intrauterine growth restriction (IUGR) on intestinal length, especially during the 2nd trimester. Accurate evaluation of intestinal length and knowledge of normal and reference values are of clinical importance. For example, intestinal resection may be necessary in preterm infants with necrotizing enterocolitis or mid-gut volvulus, and the surgeon should use data to be judicious in the amount removed. Linear measurements are essential in evaluating fetal development ultrasonographically and are an integral part of the postmortem examination. The intestinal lengths of 203 2nd-trimester fetuses and premature infants were measured. Small intestine length (SIL), colon length (CL), total bowel length (TBL; TBL  =  SIL + CL), and the length of the appendix (AL) increased with gestational age. No differences between the genders were observed. Colon length increased secondary to maceration, but no such effects were shown on SIL, TBL, or AL. No differences were shown in relation to IUGR. Small intestine length, CL, and TBL, but not AL, were shorter in fetuses with trisomy 21. Appendix length was not affected by any of the studied factors. We propose that the measurement of the length of the appendix may be used as an additional parameter for the postmortem evaluation of gestational age. Furthermore, its assessment may have potential as an ultrasonographic indicator of gestational age, particularly for the 2nd trimester.

  1. Vertical transmission of Zika virus targeting the radial glial cells affects cortex development of offspring mice

    PubMed Central

    Wu, Kong-Yan; Zuo, Guo-Long; Li, Xiao-Feng; Ye, Qing; Deng, Yong-Qiang; Huang, Xing-Yao; Cao, Wu-Chun; Qin, Cheng-Feng; Luo, Zhen-Ge

    2016-01-01

    The recent Zika virus (ZIKV) epidemic in Latin America coincided with a marked increase in microcephaly in newborns. However, the causal link between maternal ZIKV infection and malformation of the fetal brain has not been firmly established. Here we show a vertical transmission of ZIKV in mice and a marked effect on fetal brain development. We found that intraperitoneal (i.p.) injection of a contemporary ZIKV strain in pregnant mice led to the infection of radial glia cells (RGs) of dorsal ventricular zone of the fetuses, the primary neural progenitors responsible for cortex development, and caused a marked reduction of these cortex founder cells in the fetuses. Interestingly, the infected fetal mice exhibited a reduced cavity of lateral ventricles and a discernable decrease in surface areas of the cortex. This study thus supports the conclusion that vertically transmitted ZIKV affects fetal brain development and provides a valuable animal model for the evaluation of potential therapeutic or preventative strategies. PMID:27174054

  2. Normative Apparent Diffusion Coefficient Values in the Developing Fetal Brain

    PubMed Central

    Schneider, M.M.; Berman, J.I.; Baumer, F.M.; Glass, H.C.; Jeng, S.; Jeremy, R.J.; Esch, M.; Biran, V.; Barkovich, A.J.; Studholme, C.; Xu, D.; Glenn, O.A.

    2013-01-01

    BACKGROUND AND PURPOSE Previous studies of diffusion-weighted imaging (DWI) in fetuses are limited. Because of the need for normative data for comparison with young fetuses and preterm neonates with suspected brain abnormalities, we studied apparent diffusion coefficient (ADC) values in a population of singleton, nonsedated, healthy fetuses. MATERIALS AND METHODS DWI was performed in 28 singleton nonsedated fetuses with normal or questionably abnormal results on sonography and normal fetal MR imaging results; 10 fetuses also had a second fetal MR imaging, which included DWI. ADC values in the periatrial white matter (WM), frontal WM, thalamus, basal ganglia, cerebellum, and pons were plotted against gestational age and analyzed with linear regression. We compared mean ADC in different regions using the Tukey Honestly Significant Difference test. We also compared rates of decline in ADC with increasing gestational age across different areas by using the t test with multiple comparisons correction. Neurodevelopmental outcome was assessed. RESULTS Median gestational age was 24.28 weeks (range, 21–33.43 weeks). Results of all fetal MR imaging examinations were normal, including 1 fetus with a normal variant of a cavum velum interpositum. ADC values were highest in the frontal and periatrial WM and lowest in the thalamus and pons. ADC declined with increasing gestational age in periatrial WM (P = .0003), thalamus (P < .0001), basal ganglia (P = .0035), cerebellum (P < .0001), and pons (P = .024). Frontal WM ADC did not significantly change with gestational age. ADC declined fastest in the cerebellum, followed by the thalamus. CONCLUSIONS Regional differences in nonsedated fetal ADC values and their evolution with gestational age likely reflect differences in brain maturation and are similar to published data in premature neonates. PMID:19556350

  3. In utero exposure to chloroquine alters sexual development in the male fetal rat

    SciTech Connect

    Clewell, Rebecca A. Pluta, Linda; Thomas, Russell S.; Andersen, Melvin E.

    2009-06-15

    Chloroquine (CQ), a drug that has been used extensively for the prevention and treatment of malaria, is currently considered safe for use during pregnancy. However, CQ has been shown to disrupt steroid homeostasis in adult rats and similar compounds, such as quinacrine, inhibit steroid production in the Leydig cell in vitro. To explore the effect of in utero CQ exposure on fetal male sexual development, pregnant Sprague-Dawley rats were given a daily dose of either water or chloroquine diphosphate from GD 16-18 by oral gavage. Chloroquine was administered as 200 mg/kg CQ base on GD 16, followed by two maintenance doses of 100 mg/kg CQ base on GD 16 and 18. Three days of CQ treatment resulted in reduced maternal and fetal weight on GD 19 and increased necrosis and steatosis in the maternal liver. Fetal livers also displayed mild lipid accumulation. Maternal serum progesterone was increased after CQ administration. Fetal testes testosterone, however, was significantly decreased. Examination of the fetal testes revealed significant alterations in vascularization and seminiferous tubule development after short-term CQ treatment. Anogenital distance was not altered. Microarray and RT-PCR showed down-regulation of several genes associated with cholesterol transport and steroid synthesis in the fetal testes. This study indicates that CQ inhibits testosterone synthesis and normal testis development in the rat fetus at human relevant doses.

  4. Maternal manifestation of Ballantyne's syndrome occurring concomitantly with the development of fetal congenital mesoblastic nephroma.

    PubMed

    Takahashi, Hironori; Matsubara, Shigeki; Kuwata, Tomoyuki; Ohkuchi, Akihide; Mukoda, Yukiko; Saito, Koyomi; Usui, Rie; Suzuki, Mitsuaki

    2014-04-01

    Various fetal or placental disorders cause Ballantyne's (mirror) syndrome. For the first time, we report a maternal manifestation of Ballantyne's syndrome occurring concomitantly with the development of fetal congenital mesoblastic nephroma (CMN). In a pregnant woman with a CMN fetus, lung edema, hypertension, hyperthyroidism, and high serum human chorionic gonadotrophin level occurred, all of which characterize maternal manifestation of Ballantyne's syndrome. The fetus and placenta were devoid of 'edema', lacking 'triple edema', and thus this condition was not diagnosed as Ballantyne's syndrome; however, we considered this condition as the maternal manifestation of Ballantyne's syndrome. We performed emergent cesarean section at 28 weeks. Delivery acutely ameliorated maternal symptoms. Tumor was resected and was confirmed as CMN. Maternal manifestations of Ballantyne's syndrome, such as lung edema and hypertension, can occur in a mother with fetal CMN even without fetal and/or placental edema. The clinical course of this patient may suggest an etiology of Ballantyne's syndrome.

  5. Noninvasive monitoring of fetal growth and development in the Siberian polecat (Mustela eversmanni)

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Wimsatt, Jeffrey; Johnson, Jay D.; Wrigley, Robert H.; Biggins, Dean E.; Godbey, Jerry L.

    1998-01-01

    The Siberian polecat (Mustela eversmanni) is the preferred species to assess procedures and establish normative values for application in the related and endangered black-footed ferret (Mustela nigripes). This study was undertaken to physically, ultrasonographically, and radiographically evaluate fetal development in a spontaneously breeding captive Siberian polecat population. Ultrasonographically, fetal sac enlargement allowed presumptive preg nancy detection as early as 12 days of gestation, the fetal pole was the first definitive sign of pregnancy at about 18 days of gestation, when the fetal heart beat also appeared, and definitive pregnancy detection by ultrasound was essentially 100% accurate after 18 days. The estimation of fetal number by ultrasound was less reliable than by radiography, as it is in other litter-bearing species. Crown-rump growth, organ differentiation, and calcification patterns resembled those of domestic carnivores except that comparable developmental stages in polecats occurred at dispro portionately later times, suggesting that young Siberian polecats are delivered in a less developed state. Careful palpation permitted detection of pregnancy after day 17 but with less certainty than with ultrasound. Radiographic evaluation was insensitive and of limited value for pregnancy detection until near term. Litter number and fetal detail were difficult to assess until ossification could be observed, 3-6 days before parturition.

  6. Effects of maternal oral administration of morphine sulfate on developing rat fetal cerebrum: a morphometrical evaluation.

    PubMed

    Sadraie, Seyed Homayoon; Kaka, Gholam Reza; Sahraei, Hedayat; Dashtnavard, Hosein; Bahadoran, Hosein; Mofid, Mahmood; Nasab, Hossein Mahdavi; Jafari, Fatemeh

    2008-12-15

    Intrauterine morphine exposure is a risk factor for neurological and behavioral deficit in children, although the precise underlying biological correlate for this is unclear. Female pregnant rats were orally treated with 0.1 mg/ml of morphine solution on the 21st day of gestation. Pregnant rats were killed on the 21st day of gestation and their fetuses were taken out and evaluated for growth and cerebral development. The fetuses were fixed and followed by dehydration through graded ethanol solutions and were then embedded and their heads were coronally sectioned through the frontal cerebral cortex. Quantitative computer-assisted morphometric study was done on the frontal cerebral cortex (FCC) which consists of cortical plate (CP), intermediate (migratory) zone (IZ) and matrix (proliferative) zone (MZ) in the rat embryos. The results showed that morphine exposure caused a significant reduction of fetal weight and crown-to-rump length in morphine exposure group. The present study showed that animals with intrauterine morphine exposure, induced by a period of reduced placental blood flow during the second week of pregnancy, demonstrate reduced both cortical thickness and the numbers of neurons in the developing fetal frontal cerebral cortex (FCC). Histomorphometric evaluation revealed that the thickness of the CP was significantly decreased in the morphine-exposed embryos. In addition, neuronal counting showed that cell proliferation in the CP was suppressed after morphine administration and that the migration of neurons from the matrix zone (MZ) to the cortex was decelerated. In conclusion, these results showed that morphine exposure during the second week of pregnancy could affect brain development in a way, which could lead to neurological and behavioral deficits in the postnatal animal.

  7. Mapping Fetal Brain Development in utero Using MRI: The Big Bang of Brain Mapping

    PubMed Central

    Studholme, Colin

    2012-01-01

    The development of tools to construct and investigate probabilistic maps of the adult human brain from MRI have led to advances in both basic neuroscience and clinical diagnosis. These tools are increasingly being applied to brain development in adolescence, childhood and even neonatal and premature neonatal imaging. Looking even earlier in development, parallel developments in clinical fetal Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) have led to its growing use as a tool in challenging medical conditions. This has motivated new engineering developments that combine optimal fast MRI scans with techniques derived from computer vision that allow full 3D imaging of the moving fetal brain in utero without sedation. These promise to provide a new and unprecedented window into early human brain growth. This article will review the developments that have led us to this point, and examine the current state of the art in the fields of fast fetal imaging, motion correction and the tools to analyze dynamically changing fetal brain structure. New methods to deal with developmental tissue segmentation and the construction of spatio-temporal atlases will be examined, together with techniques to map fetal brain growth patterns. PMID:21568716

  8. N-Methyl-D-aspartate Receptor Excessive Activation Inhibited Fetal Rat Lung Development In Vivo and In Vitro

    PubMed Central

    Liao, Zhengchang; Zhou, Xiaocheng; Luo, Ziqiang; Huo, Huiyi; Wang, Mingjie; Yu, Xiaohe; Cao, Chuanding; Ding, Ying; Xiong, Zeng

    2016-01-01

    Background. Intrauterine hypoxia is a common cause of fetal growth and lung development restriction. Although N-methyl-D-aspartate receptors (NMDARs) are distributed in the postnatal lung and play a role in lung injury, little is known about NMDAR's expression and role in fetal lung development. Methods. Real-time PCR and western blotting analysis were performed to detect NMDARs between embryonic days (E) 15.5 and E21.5 in fetal rat lungs. NMDAR antagonist MK-801's influence on intrauterine hypoxia-induced retardation of fetal lung development was tested in vivo, and NMDA's direct effect on fetal lung development was observed using fetal lung organ culture in vitro. Results. All seven NMDARs are expressed in fetal rat lungs. Intrauterine hypoxia upregulated NMDARs expression in fetal lungs and decreased fetal body weight, lung weight, lung-weight-to-body-weight ratio, and radial alveolar count, whereas MK-801 alleviated this damage in vivo. In vitro experiments showed that NMDA decreased saccular circumference and area per unit and downregulated thyroid transcription factor-1 and surfactant protein-C mRNA expression. Conclusions. The excessive activation of NMDARs contributed to hypoxia-induced fetal lung development retardation and appropriate blockade of NMDAR might be a novel therapeutic strategy for minimizing the negative outcomes of prenatal hypoxia on lung development. PMID:27478831

  9. Mapping fetal brain development in utero using magnetic resonance imaging: the Big Bang of brain mapping.

    PubMed

    Studholme, Colin

    2011-08-15

    The development of tools to construct and investigate probabilistic maps of the adult human brain from magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) has led to advances in both basic neuroscience and clinical diagnosis. These tools are increasingly being applied to brain development in adolescence and childhood, and even to neonatal and premature neonatal imaging. Even earlier in development, parallel advances in clinical fetal MRI have led to its growing use as a tool in challenging medical conditions. This has motivated new engineering developments encompassing optimal fast MRI scans and techniques derived from computer vision, the combination of which allows full 3D imaging of the moving fetal brain in utero without sedation. These promise to provide a new and unprecedented window into early human brain growth. This article reviews the developments that have led us to this point, examines the current state of the art in the fields of fast fetal imaging and motion correction, and describes the tools to analyze dynamically changing fetal brain structure. New methods to deal with developmental tissue segmentation and the construction of spatiotemporal atlases are examined, together with techniques to map fetal brain growth patterns.

  10. Blood borne: bacterial components in mother’s blood influence fetal development

    PubMed Central

    Loughran, Allister J.; Tuomanen, Elaine I.

    2016-01-01

    Bacterial or viral infection of the mother during the course of pregnancy can cross the placenta and actively infect the fetus. However, especially for bacteria, it is more common for mothers to experience an infection that can be treated without overt fetal infection. In this setting, it is less well understood what the risk to fetal development is, particularly in terms of neurological development. This research highlight reviews recent findings indicating that bacterial components generated during infection of the mother can cross the placenta and activate the fetal innate immune system resulting in changes in the course of brain development and subsequent progression to postnatal cognitive disorders. Bacterial cell wall is a ubiquitous bacterial PAMP (pathogen-associated molecular pattern) known to activate inflammation through the stimulation of TLR2. Cell wall is released from bacteria during antibiotic treatment and new work shows that embryos exposed to cell wall from the mother demonstrate anomalous proliferation of neuronal precursor cells in a TLR2 dependent manner. Such proliferation increases the neuronal density of the cortical plate and alters brain architecture. Although there is no fetal death, subsequent cognitive development is significantly impaired. This model system suggests that bacterial infection of the mother and its treatment can impact fetal brain development and requires greater understanding to potentially eliminate a risk factor for cognitive disorders such as autism.

  11. Short-term maternal psychological stress in the post-conception period in ewes affects fetal growth and gestation length.

    PubMed

    Smith, Jennifer; Ferguson, Drewe; Jauregui, Guillermo; Panarace, Martín; Medina, Mariano; Lehnert, Sigrid; Hill, Jonathan R

    2008-08-01

    Fetal development can be influenced by maternal environment in the peri-conceptional period. This study investigated the effect of maternal feed intake and psychological stress within the first 6 days after conception on embryo development and fetal growth. Superovulated ewes (n=40) were artificially inseminated with semen from one ram. Ewes were then divided into four groups (n=10): group 1 (control) was fed at maintenance level, group 2 (high) at 2x maintenance, and group 3 (low) at 0.5x maintenance on days 2-6 after conception. Group 4 (stress) was fed at maintenance level and then an intense physical and psychological stress challenge was applied for 1 h only on days 2 and 3 after conception. Embryos were recovered at day 6. A total of 113 transferable grade embryos were transferred singly into synchronized untreated recipients, while the remaining embryos (n=165) were fixed and stained for cell counts. Post-conception maternal stress or feed intake did not alter the cell count or grade of day 6 embryos. Fetuses from the stress group had longer crown-rump lengths at day 30 and longer femur length at day 58. Fetuses from the stressed and high feed groups had greater abdominal circumferences at day 85. Subsequent birth weights were not significantly different. Ewes carrying lambs from the stress treatment had shorter gestation lengths. These results show that short-term perturbations of the post-conception maternal environment have measurable effects on fetal development and gestation length.

  12. Development of an implantable synthetic membrane for the treatment of preterm premature rupture of fetal membranes.

    PubMed

    Roman, Sabiniano; Bullock, Anthony J; Anumba, Dilly O; MacNeil, Sheila

    2016-02-01

    Preterm premature rupture of fetal membranes is a very common condition leading to premature labour of a non viable fetus. Significant morbidities may occur when preterm premature rupture of fetal membranes management is attempted to prolong the pregnancy for fetal maturation. Reducing the rate of loss of amniotic fluid and providing a barrier to bacterial entry may allow the pregnancy to continue to term, avoiding complications. Our aim is to develop a synthetic biocompatible membrane to form a distensible barrier for cervical closure which acts to reduce fluid loss and provide a surface for epithelial ingrowth to help repair the damaged membranes. Therefore, a bilayer membrane was developed using an electrospinning technique of combining two FDA-approved polymers, poly-L-lactic acid (PLA) and polyurethane (Z3) polymer. This was compared to a plain electrospun Z3 membrane. The physical and mechanical properties were assessed using scanning electron microscope images and a BOSE tensiometer, respectively, and compared to native fetal membranes. The performance of the membranes in preventing fluid loss was assessed by measuring their ability to support a column of water. Finally the ability of the membranes to support cell ingrowth was assessed by culturing adipose-derived stem cells on the membranes for two weeks and assessing metabolic activity after 7 and 14 days. The physical properties of the bilayer were similar to that of the native fetal membranes and it was resistant to fluid penetration. This bilayer membrane presented mechanical properties close to those for fetal membranes and showed elastic distention, which may be crucial for progress of the pregnancy. The membrane was also able to retain surgical sutures. In addition, it also supported the attachment and growth of adipose-derived stem cells for two weeks. In conclusion, this membrane may prove a useful approach in the treatment of preterm premature rupture of fetal membranes and now merits further

  13. Insulin-like growth factors in embryonic and fetal growth and skeletal development (Review)

    PubMed Central

    AGROGIANNIS, GEORGIOS D.; SIFAKIS, STAVROS; PATSOURIS, EFSTRATIOS S.; KONSTANTINIDOU, ANASTASIA E.

    2014-01-01

    The insulin-like growth factors (IGF)-I and -II have a predominant role in fetal growth and development. IGFs are involved in the proliferation, differentiation and apoptosis of fetal cells in vitro and the IGF serum concentration has been shown to be closely correlated with fetal growth and length. IGF transcripts and peptides have been detected in almost every fetal tissue from as early in development as pre-implantation to the final maturation stage. Furthermore, IGFs have been demonstrated to be involved in limb morphogenesis. However, although ablation of Igf genes in mice resulted in growth retardation and delay in skeletal maturation, no impact on outgrowth and patterning of embryonic limbs was observed. Additionally, various molecular defects in the Igf1 and Igf1r genes in humans have been associated with severe intrauterine growth retardation and impaired skeletal maturation, but not with truncated limbs or severe skeletal dysplasia. The conflicting data between in vitro and in vivo observations with regard to bone morphogenesis suggests that IGFs may not be the sole trophic factors involved in fetal skeletal growth and that redundant mechanisms may exist in chondro- and osteogenesis. Further investigation is required in order to elucidate the functions of IGFs in skeletal development. PMID:24859417

  14. Timing and trajectories of fetal growth related to cognitive development in childhood.

    PubMed

    von Ehrenstein, Ondine S; Mikolajczyk, Rafael T; Zhang, Jun

    2009-12-01

    The authors investigated timing and trajectories of fetal growth in relation to childhood development in the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development-Scandinavian Study of Successive Small-for-Gestational Age Births (1986-1988) (n = 1,059). Fetal size was assessed by ultrasound at 17, 25, and 33 gestational weeks and at birth. Bayley Scales of Infant Development and the Wechsler Preschool and Primary Scale of Intelligence-Revised tests were conducted at ages 1 and 5 years, respectively, producing mental and psychomotor development indexes and verbal and performance intelligence quotients. Relative fetal size was calculated as a standard deviation score at each data point; growth trajectories were explored with longitudinal mixture models. Fetal size at 17, 25, and 33 weeks was positively associated with mental development index; larger size at 33 weeks and at birth was associated with higher verbal intelligence quotient scores (2.61, 95% confidence interval: 1.06, 4.15 and 1.90, 95% confidence interval: 0.67, 3.13 increase per 1 standard deviation score, respectively); findings were similar for performance intelligence quotient. Seven trajectories were identified; scores were lower for "small" and "medium-to-small" trajectories than for "medium" and "big" (representing normal size) trajectories: mental development index (P < 0.01), performance intelligence quotient (P < 0.001), and verbal intelligence quotient (P < 0.001). Overall, larger fetal size in the second and third trimesters was positively associated with childhood development. Fetal growth trajectories may matter beyond birth.

  15. Geminin deletion increases the number of fetal hematopoietic stem cells by affecting the expression of key transcription factors.

    PubMed

    Karamitros, Dimitris; Patmanidi, Alexandra L; Kotantaki, Panoraia; Potocnik, Alexandre J; Bähr-Ivacevic, Tomi; Benes, Vladimir; Lygerou, Zoi; Kioussis, Dimitris; Taraviras, Stavros

    2015-01-01

    Balancing stem cell self-renewal and initiation of lineage specification programs is essential for the development and homeostasis of the hematopoietic system. We have specifically ablated geminin in the developing murine hematopoietic system and observed profound defects in the generation of mature blood cells, leading to embryonic lethality. Hematopoietic stem cells (HSCs) accumulated in the fetal liver following geminin ablation, while committed progenitors were reduced. Genome-wide transcriptome analysis identified key HSC transcription factors as being upregulated upon geminin deletion, revealing a gene network linked with geminin that controls fetal hematopoiesis. In order to obtain mechanistic insight into the ability of geminin to regulate transcription, we examined Hoxa9 as an example of a key gene in definitive hematopoiesis. We demonstrate that in human K562 cells geminin is associated with HOXA9 regulatory elements and its absence increases HOXA9 transcription similarly to that observed in vivo. Moreover, silencing geminin reduced recruitment of the PRC2 component SUZ12 to the HOXA9 locus and resulted in an increase in RNA polymerase II recruitment and H3K4 trimethylation (H3K4me3), whereas the repressive marks H3K9me3 and H3K27me3 were reduced. The chromatin landscape was also modified at the regulatory regions of HOXA10 and GATA1. K562 cells showed a reduced ability to differentiate to erythrocytes and megakaryocytes upon geminin silencing. Our data suggest that geminin is indispensable for fetal hematopoiesis and regulates the generation of a physiological pool of stem and progenitor cells in the fetal hematopoietic system.

  16. Improving metabolic health in obese male mice via diet and exercise restores embryo development and fetal growth.

    PubMed

    McPherson, Nicole O; Bakos, Hassan W; Owens, Julie A; Setchell, Brian P; Lane, Michelle

    2013-01-01

    Paternal obesity is now clearly associated with or causal of impaired embryo and fetal development and reduced pregnancy rates in humans and rodents. This appears to be a result of reduced blastocyst potential. Whether these adverse embryo and fetal outcomes can be ameliorated by interventions to reduce paternal obesity has not been established. Here, male mice fed a high fat diet (HFD) to induce obesity were used, to determine if early embryo and fetal development is improved by interventions of diet (CD) and/or exercise to reduce adiposity and improve metabolism. Exercise and to a lesser extent CD in obese males improved embryo development rates, with increased cell to cell contacts in the compacting embryo measured by E-cadherin in exercise interventions and subsequently, increased blastocyst trophectoderm (TE), inner cell mass (ICM) and epiblast cell numbers. Implantation rates and fetal development from resulting blastocysts were also improved by exercise in obese males. Additionally, all interventions to obese males increased fetal weight, with CD alone and exercise alone, also increasing fetal crown-rump length. Measures of embryo and fetal development correlated with paternal measures of glycaemia, insulin action and serum lipids regardless of paternal adiposity or intervention, suggesting a link between paternal metabolic health and subsequent embryo and fetal development. This is the first study to show that improvements to metabolic health of obese males through diet and exercise can improve embryo and fetal development, suggesting such interventions are likely to improve offspring health.

  17. A Probability Analysis of Historical Pregnancy and Fetal Data from Dutch Belted and New Zealand White Rabbit Strains from Embryo-Fetal Development Studies.

    PubMed

    Posobiec, Lorraine M; Cox, Estella M; Solomon, Howard M; Lewis, Elise M; Wang, Kai-fen; Stanislaus, Dinesh

    2016-04-01

    Embryo-fetal development (EFD) studies, typically in pregnant rats and rabbits, are conducted prior to enrolling females of reproductive age in clinical trials. Common rabbit strains used are the New Zealand White (NZW) and Dutch Belted (DB). As fetal abnormalities can occur in all groups, including controls, Historical Control Data (HCD) is compiled using data from control groups of EFD studies, and is used along with each study's concurrent control group to help determine whether fetal abnormalities are caused by the test article or are part of background incidences. A probability analysis was conducted on 2014 HCD collected at Charles River Inc., Horsham PA on Covance NZW, Covance DB, and Charles River (CR) NZW rabbits. The analysis was designed to determine the probability of 2 or 3 out of a group of 22 does aborting their litter or of having a fetal abnormality by chance. Results demonstrate that pregnancy parameters and fetal observations differ not only between strains, but between sources of rabbits of the same strain. As a result the probability of these observations occurring by chance in two or three litters was drastically different. Although no one single strain is perfect, this analysis highlights the need to appreciate the inherent differences in pregnancy and fetal abnormalities between strains, and points out that an apparent isolated increased incidence of an observation in one strain will not necessarily be test-article related in another strain. A robust HCD is critical for interpretation of EFD rabbit studies, regardless of the rabbit strain used.

  18. Ethanol effects on embryonic craniofacial growth and development: implications for study of the fetal alcohol syndrome.

    PubMed

    Weston, W M; Greene, R M; Uberti, M; Pisano, M M

    1994-02-01

    Fetal alcohol syndrome (FAS), which is brought about by maternal consumption of ethanol during pregnancy, is a major public health problem. To gain understanding of the etiology of this condition, a number of teratological studies have been performed in different animal systems to develop an animal model for FAS. The C57BL/6J mouse strain has been described as susceptible to the teratogenic effects of ethanol, whereas the ICR (CD-1) strain is considered relatively insensitive. We have compared the effects of ethanol on DNA and protein synthesis in cultured embryonic palate mesenchymal cells from both strains to determine if the reported differential sensitivity to ethanol is reflected in differences in ethanol's effects on cell behavior. Chronic exposure to 200 mM ethanol for 48 hr had a strong inhibitory effect on DNA synthesis in palate cells derived from both the C57BL/6J and ICR strains and a significant effect on protein synthesis in C57BL/6J palate cells. When we attempted to verify strain differences in susceptibility to ethanol teratogenesis, we were not able to observe an increased incidence of birth defects due to ethanol in either strain. High doses of ethanol (5.8 g/kg, administered by intraperitoneal injection on gestational day 8) resulted in death in both C57BL/6J and ICR mice. A lower dose (4.8 g/kg) caused decreased fetal weight and increased resorption in both strains, but did not bring about FAS-like craniofacial dysmorphology in either strain. It appears, therefore, that whereas ethanol can significantly affect the behavior of cells derived from craniofacial tissue, these effects cannot be correlated with sensitivity to ethanol teratogenesis in the mouse system.

  19. Influence of intrauterine growth restriction on airway development in fetal and postnatal sheep.

    PubMed

    Wignarajah, Dharshini; Cock, Megan L; Pinkerton, Kent E; Harding, Richard

    2002-06-01

    Epidemiologic studies suggest that intrauterine growth restriction (IUGR) can lead to impaired lung function, yet little information exists on the effects of IUGR on airway development. Our objectives were to characterize morphometrically effects of IUGR on airway structure in the fetus and to determine whether alterations persist into postnatal life. We used two groups of sheep, each with appropriate controls; a fetal group was subjected to IUGR by restriction of placental function from 120 to 140 d (term approximately 147 d), and a postnatal group, killed 8 wk after birth, was subjected to IUGR from 120 d to birth at term. In both fetuses and postnatal lambs, IUGR did not alter lung weight relative to body weight. In IUGR fetuses, the luminal areas and basement membrane perimeters of the trachea and larger bronchi (generations 0-8, trachea = 0) were smaller than in controls. Airway wall areas, relative to basement membrane perimeters, were reduced in IUGR fetuses compared with controls, largely due to reduced areas of cartilage and epithelium. At 8 wk after birth, there were no significant differences in airway dimensions between IUGR and control lambs. However, the number of profiles of bronchial submucosal glands, relative to basement membrane perimeters, was lower in IUGR lambs than in controls and the area of epithelial mucin was increased. We conclude that restriction of fetal growth during late gestation impairs the growth of bronchial walls that could affect airway compliance in the immediate postnatal period. Although airway growth deficits are reversed by 8 wk, alterations in mucus elements persist.

  20. Morpho-functional characteristics of rat fetal thyroid gland are affected by prenatal dexamethasone exposure.

    PubMed

    Manojlović-Stojanoski, Milica N; Filipović, Branko R; Nestorović, Nataša M; Šošić-Jurjević, Branka T; Ristić, Nataša M; Trifunović, Svetlana L; Milošević, Verica Lj

    2014-06-01

    Thyroid hormones (TH) and glucocorticoids strongly contribute to the maturation of fetal tissues in the preparation for extrauterine life. Influence of maternal dexamethasone (Dx) administration on thyroid glands morpho-functional characteristics of near term rat fetuses was investigated applying unbiased stereology. On the 16th day of pregnancy dams received 1.0mg/Dx/kg/b.w., followed by 0.5mg/Dx/kg/b.w. on the 17th and 18th days of gestation. The control females received the same volume of saline. The volume of fetal thyroid was estimated using Cavalieri's principle; the physical/fractionator design was applied for the determination of absolute number of follicular cells in mitosis and immunohistochemically labeled C cells; C cell volume was measured using the planar rotator. The functional activity of thyroid tissue was provided from thyroglobulin (Tg) and thyroperoxidase (TPO) immunohistochemical staining. Applying these design-based modern stereological methods it was shown that Dx treatment of gravid females led to a significant decrease of fetal thyroid gland volume in 19- and 21-day-old fetuses, due to decreased proliferation of follicular cells. The Tg and TPO immunohistochemistry demonstrated that intensive TH production starts and continues during the examined period in control and Dx-exposed fetuses. Under the influence of Dx the absolute number of C cells was lower in both groups of near term fetuses, although unchanged relation between the two populations of endocrine cells, follicular and C cells suggesting that structural relationships within the gland are preserved. In conclusion maternal glucocorticoid administration at the thyroid gland level exerts growth-inhibitory and maturational promoting effects in near term rat fetuses.

  1. Performance of American Indian Children with Fetal Alcohol Syndrome on the Test of Language Development.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Carney, Laura J.; Chermak, Gail D.

    1991-01-01

    Twenty-seven American Indian children (ages 4-12), 10 with Fetal Alcohol Syndrome (FAS) and 17 normally developing control subjects, were administered the Test of Language Development. FAS children exhibited depressed performance on most subtests. The older FAS children presented syntactic deficits whereas the younger FAS subjects presented more…

  2. Immune mechanisms at the maternal-fetal interface: perspectives and challenges

    PubMed Central

    PrabhuDas, Mercy; Bonney, Elizabeth; Caron, Kathleen; Dey, Sudhansu; Erlebacher, Adrian; Fazleabas, Asgerally; Fisher, Susan; Golos, Thaddeus; Matzuk, Martin; McCune, Joseph M; Mor, Gil; Schulz, Laura; Soares, Michael; Spencer, Thomas; Strominger, Jack; Way, Sing Sing; Yoshinaga, Koji

    2016-01-01

    Leaders gathered at the US National Institutes of Health in November 2014 to discuss recent advances and emerging research areas in aspects of maternal-fetal immunity that may affect fetal development and pregnancy success. PMID:25789673

  3. Similar photoperiod-related birth seasonalities among professional baseball players and lesbian women with an opposite seasonality among gay men: Maternal melatonin may affect fetal sexual dimorphism.

    PubMed

    Marzullo, Giovanni

    2014-05-30

    Based on pre-mid-20th-century data, the same photoperiod-related birth seasonality previously observed in schizophrenia was also recently found in neural-tube defects and in extreme left-handedness among professional baseball players. This led to a hypothesis implicating maternal melatonin and other mediators of sunlight actions capable of affecting 4th-embryonic-week developments including neural-tube closure and left-right differentiation of the brain. Here, new studies of baseball players suggest that the same sunlight actions could also affect testosterone-dependent male-female differentiation in the 4-month-old fetus. Independently of hand-preferences, baseball players (n=6829), and particularly the stronger hitters among them, showed a unique birth seasonality with an excess around early-November and an equally significant deficit 6 months later around early-May. In two smaller studies, north-American and other northern-hemisphere born lesbians showed the same strong-hitter birth seasonality while gay men showed the opposite seasonality. The sexual dimorphism-critical 4th-fetal-month testosterone surge coincides with the summer-solstice in early-November births and the winter-solstice in early-May births. These coincidences are discussed and a "melatonin mechanism" is proposed based on evidence that in seasonal breeders maternal melatonin imparts "photoperiodic history" to the newborn by direct inhibition of fetal testicular testosterone synthesis. The present effects could represent a vestige of this same phenomenon in man.

  4. Development of pulmonary neuroendocrine cells of fetal hamster in explant culture.

    PubMed

    Ito, T; Nogawa, H; Udaka, N; Kitamura, H; Kanisawa, M

    1997-11-01

    Fetal hamster lung explant was cultured in serum-free medium on gestational Day 11-2 days before the appearance of pulmonary neuroendocrine cells (PNEC)--and the development and differentiation of PNEC from immature fetal lung epithelium was examined through immunostaining for neural cell adhesion molecule (NCAM) to establish an in vitro system to study the mechanisms involved. PNEC were present in the main bronchus after 2 days of culture. Thereafter, NCAM-positive clusters of PNEC increased and were distributed from the large bronchus to the terminal bronchiole with a proximal-to-distal wave. To elucidate the role of NCAM in the fetal development of PNEC, whole fetal lung was cultured on gestational Day 11 with an anti-NCAM antibody. This antibody slightly inhibited the growth and branching morphogenesis of the lung and disturbed the formation of PNEC clusters. NCAM may function to form clusters of PNEC known as neuroepithelial bodies. We cultured fetal lung epithelial explant at gestational Day 11 after removing mesenchyme, including nerve tissue, with dispase digestion. Immunohistochemical staining for NCAM revealed that PNEC were induced in cultured fetal epithelium without mesenchymal tissue, but basement membrane Matrigel was necessary to maintain cultured epithelium. In conclusion, PNEC derive from immature airway epithelial cells. This organ culture system, therefore, is a useful experimental model and should facilitate further investigations of the development and differentiation of PNEC. Mesenchymal and neural tissues are not always necessary for the development of PNEC, but matrix substance and/or growth factors may be required to induce or maintain PNEC.

  5. Fetal MRI: A pictorial essay

    PubMed Central

    Rathee, Sapna; Joshi, Priscilla; Kelkar, Abhimanyu; Seth, Nagesh

    2016-01-01

    Ultrasonography (USG) is the primary method for antenatal fetal evaluation. However, fetal magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) has now become a valuable adjunct to USG in confirming/excluding suspected abnormalities and in the detection of additional abnormalities, thus changing the outcome of pregnancy and optimizing perinatal management. With the development of ultrafast sequences, fetal MRI has made remarkable progress in recent times. In this pictorial essay, we illustrate a spectrum of structural abnormalities affecting the central nervous system, thorax, genitourinary and gastrointestinal tract, as well as miscellaneous anomalies. Anomalies in twin gestations and placental abnormalities have also been included. PMID:27081224

  6. Morphology, development, and evolution of fetal membranes and placentation in squamate reptiles.

    PubMed

    Blackburn, Daniel G; Flemming, Alexander F

    2009-09-15

    Current studies on fetal membranes of reptiles are providing insight into three major historical transformations: evolution of the amniote egg, evolution of viviparity, and evolution of placentotrophy. Squamates (lizards and snakes) are ideal for such studies because their fetal membranes sustain embryos in oviparous species and contribute to placentas in viviparous species. Ultrastructure of the fetal membranes in oviparous corn snakes (Pituophis guttatus) shows that the chorioallantois is specialized for gas exchange and the omphalopleure, for water absorption. Transmission and scanning electron microscopic studies of viviparous thamnophine snakes (Thamnophis, Storeria) have revealed morphological specializations for gas exchange and absorption in the intra-uterine environment that represent modifications of features found in oviparous species. Thus, fetal membranes in oviparous species show morphological differentiation for distinct functions that have been recruited and enhanced under viviparous conditions. The ultimate in specialization of fetal membranes is found in viviparous skinks of South America (Mabuya) and Africa (Trachylepis, Eumecia), in which placentotrophy accounts for nearly all of the nutrients for development. Ongoing research on these lizards has revealed morphological specializations of the chorioallantoic placenta through which nutrient transfer is accomplished. In addition, African Trachylepis show an invasive form of implantation, in which uterine epithelium is replaced by invading chorionic cells. Ongoing analysis of these lizards shows how integration of multiple lines of evidence can provide insight into the evolution of developmental and reproductive specializations once thought to be confined to eutherian mammals.

  7. Effects of 2-chlorodibenzofuran on fetal development in mice

    SciTech Connect

    Usami, Makoto; Sakemi, Kazue; Tabata, Hirobumi; Kawashima, Kunio; Takanaka, Akira

    1993-11-01

    2-Chlorodibenzofuran (2-MCDF), a monochlorinated derivative of dibenzofuran, has been detected as a contaminant in chlorinated tap water in Japan. Shiraishi et al. (1985) analyzed polynuclear aromatic hydrocarbons in Tsukuba tap water and detected 0.04-1.4 ng/L of 2-MCDF. This means that unintended human exposure to 2-MCDF has occurred, and therefore safety evaluation of 2-MCDF is needed. Toxicological information on 2-MCDF is limited and available only on mutagenicity and metabolic fate. In the Ames test, 2-MCDF showed weak mutagenic activity on Salmonella typhimurium strain TA 98 above 0.4 {mu}mol/plate, but not on strain TA 100 even at 10 {mu}mol/plate, and this activity was diminished by the addition of S9 mix. After intravenous or oral administration to rats, 2-MCDF is rapidly metabolized and excreted in bile and urine. Major metabolites in the rate bile fluid were 2- and/or 7-hydroxylated forms of 2-MCDF. For developmental toxicity, we previously examined the embryotoxicity of 2-MCDF by using post-implantation rat embryo culture. When day 9 embryos were continuously exposed throughout 48 hr culture period either in the presence or in the absence of a metabolic activation system, 2-MCDF at 1 mM was embryotoxic and caused morphological abnormalities of the embryos. However, dosing of up to 1000 mg/kg/day of 2-MCDF to pregnant rats during days 9 to 11 of gestation, corresponding to the culture period, had no effects on the embryo-fetal growth. It was tentatively concluded from these results that 2-MCDF had weak-inactive teratogenicity in rats. In the present study, we further examined fetal effects of 2-MCDF by a teratogenicity test in which the dosing period covers the major organogenic period. We used mice, since they have been used for the evaluation of teratogenicity of polychlorinated congeners of 2-MCDF, because of their higher susceptibility than that of rats. 16 refs., 1 fig., 3 tabs.

  8. [Morphogenesis of Human Fetal Thymus during Weeks 22-27 of Development].

    PubMed

    Kulida, L V; Peretyatko, L P; Nazarov, S B

    2015-01-01

    Distinctive features of human fetal thymus morphogenesis in early ontogeny in the case of uncomplicated pregnancy have been characterized. A steady increase of thymus dimensions and weight occurred concomitantly to differentiation of morphofunctional zones within the organ. Cell differentiation in the subcapsular and inner cortical zones of the thymus lobes was manifested as changes in parameters of expression of T-lymphocyte antigens CD1, CD2, and CD3 and ultrastructural features of reticuloepithelial cells (REC) type I and II forming a microenvironment for lymphocytes. RECs of the medullar zone formed a glomerular syncytium with desmosomal interepithelial contacts by week 22 of fetal development. Small lymphocytes predominated among thymocytes (66%). Hassall's corpuscles, the structural correlates of morphological and functional maturity, predominated in the fetal thymuses during developmental weeks 25-27.

  9. Development of a piezopolymer pressure sensor for a portable fetal heart rate monitor

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Zuckerwar, A. J.; Pretlow, R. A.; Stoughton, J. W.; Baker, D. A.

    1993-01-01

    A piezopolymer pressure sensor has been developed for service in a portable fetal heart rate monitor, which will permit an expectant mother to perform the fetal nonstress test, a standard predelivery test, in her home. Several sensors are mounted in an array on a belt worn by the mother. The sensor design conforms to the distinctive features of the fetal heart tone, namely, the acoustic signature, frequency spectrum, signal amplitude, and localization. The components of a sensor serve to fulfill five functions: signal detection, acceleration cancellation, acoustical isolation, electrical shielding, and electrical isolation of the mother. A theoretical analysis of the sensor response yields a numerical value for the sensor sensitivity, which is compared to experiment in an in vitro sensor calibration. Finally, an in vivo test on patients within the last six weeks of term reveals that nonstress test recordings from the acoustic monitor compare well with those obtained from conventional ultrasound.

  10. Development of a media campaign on fetal alcohol spectrum disorders for Northern Plains American Indian communities.

    PubMed

    Hanson, Jessica D; Winberg, Austin; Elliott, Amy

    2012-11-01

    Alcohol-exposed pregnancies are especially of concern for American Indians. The Indian Health Service reported that 47% to 56% of pregnant patients admitted to drinking alcohol during their pregnancy. In addition, rates of Fetal Alcohol Syndrome are estimated to be as high as 3.9 to 9.0 per 1,000 live births among American Indians in the Northern Plains, making prevention of alcohol-exposed pregnancies an important public health effort for this population. The goal of this article is to add to the literature on universal prevention of Fetal Alcohol Spectrum disorders by describing the development, dissemination, and evaluation of a media campaign on Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders that was created by and for American Indian communities in the Northern Plains.

  11. Yellowstone bison fetal development and phenology of parturition

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Gogan, P.J.P.; Podruzny, K.M.; Olexa, E.M.; Pac, H.I.; Frey, K.L.

    2005-01-01

    Knowledge of Yellowstone bison (Bison bison) parturition patterns allows managers to refine risk assessments and manage to reduce the potential for transmission of brucellosis between bison and cattle. We used historical (1941) and contemporary (1989–2002) weights and morphometric measurements of Yellowstone bison fetuses to describe fetal growth and to predict timing and synchrony of parturition. Our method was supported by agreement between our predicted parturition pattern and observed birth dates for bison that were taken in to captivity while pregnant. The distribution of parturition dates in Yellowstone bison is generally right-skewed with a majority of births in April and May and few births in the following months. Predicted timing of parturition was consistently earlier for bison of Yellowstone's northern herd than central herd. The predicted median parturition date for northern herd bison in the historical period was 3 to 12 days earlier than for 2 years in the contemporary period, respectively. Median predicted birth dates and birthing synchrony differed within herds and years in the contemporary period. For a single year of paired data, the predicted median birth date for northern herd bison was 14 days earlier than for central herd bison. This difference is coincident with an earlier onset of spring plant growth on the northern range. Our findings permit refinement of the timing of separation between Yellowstone bison and cattle intended to reduce the probability of transmission of brucellosis from bison to cattle.

  12. The bone-muscle ratio of fetal lambs is affected more by maternal nutrition during pregnancy than by maternal size.

    PubMed

    Firth, E C; Rogers, C W; Vickers, M; Kenyon, P R; Jenkinson, C M C; Blair, H T; Johnson, P L; Mackenzie, D D S; Peterson, S W; Morris, S T

    2008-06-01

    Bone formation and loss are related to the strain imposed on bone by muscle forces. Bone mineral content (BMC) and lean mass (LM) of fetal lambs was determined at day 140 of pregnancy in 8 groups of ewes, which were of either large or small body size, on either high (ad libitum) or maintenance pasture intake from day 21 of pregnancy, or carrying either singletons or twins. BMC and LM (using DXA scanning) of fetal hindquarters/spine were corrected to leg length. BMC and LM were less in twin than singleton groups (P < 0.001). Large ewes on high intake produced single fetuses with a (group mean) BMC/LM ratio that was higher (P < 0.002) than that in fetuses of large ewes with singletons on maintenance intake or twins on either high or maintenance intakes, the ratios of which were not different. In single fetuses from small ewes on high intake, the BMC/LM ratio was higher than those from small ewes with singletons on maintenance intake or twins on either high or maintenance intakes, the ratios of which were not different. The ratio was not different in singleton fetuses of ewes on high intake, whether they were large or small. Different fetal environments resulted in a given amount of muscle being associated with a higher or lower bone mass. Dietary intake during pregnancy was more important than maternal size in affecting the ratio. We conclude that intrauterine environmental factors may be important in determining bone mass postnatally, and possibly later in life.

  13. Co-expression analysis of fetal weight-related genes in ovine skeletal muscle during mid and late fetal development stages

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Muscle development and lipid metabolism play important roles during fetal development stages. The commercial Texel sheep are more muscular than the indigenous Ujumqin sheep which are fatter. We performed serial transcriptomics assays and systems biology analyses to investigate the dynamics of gene e...

  14. Simvastatin reduces fetal testosterone production and permanently alters reproductive tract development in the male rat

    EPA Science Inventory

    Androgen signaling by fetal Leydig cells is critical in the proper development of the male reproductive tract. As cholesterol is a precursor for hormone biosynthesis,inhibition of the cholesterol pathway during sex differentiation may reduce testosterone {T). We hypothesized tha...

  15. Paternal Low Protein Diet Programs Preimplantation Embryo Gene Expression, Fetal Growth and Skeletal Development in Mice.

    PubMed

    Watkins, Adam J; Sirovica, Slobodan; Stokes, Ben; Isaacs, Mark; Addison, Owen; Martin, Richard A

    2017-02-08

    Defining the mechanisms underlying the programming of early life growth is fundamental for improving adult health and wellbeing. While the association between maternal diet, offspring growth and adult disease risk is well-established, the effect of father's diet on offspring development are largely unknown. Therefore, we fed male mice an imbalanced low protein diet (LPD) to determine the impact on post-fertilisation development and fetal growth. We observed that in preimplantation embryos derived from LPD fed males, expression of multiple genes within the central metabolic AMPK pathway was reduced. In late gestation, paternal LPD programmed increased fetal weight, however, placental weight was reduced, resulting in an elevated fetal:placental weight ratio. Analysis of gene expression patterns revealed increased levels of transporters for calcium, amino acids and glucose within LPD placentas. Furthermore, placental expression of the epigenetic regulators Dnmt1 and Dnmt3L were increased also, coinciding with altered patterns of maternal and paternal imprinted genes. More strikingly, we observed fetal skeletal development was perturbed in response to paternal LPD. Here, while offspring of LPD fed males possessed larger skeletons, their bones comprised lower volumes of high mineral density in combination with reduced maturity of bone apatite. These data offer new insight in the underlying programming mechanisms linking poor paternal diet at the time of conception with the development and growth of his offspring.

  16. CHARACTERIZATION OF THE PERIOD OF SENSITIVITY OF FETAL MALE SEXUAL DEVELOPMENT TO VINCLOZOLIN

    EPA Science Inventory

    Characterization of the period of sensitivity of fetal male sexual development to vinclozolin.

    Wolf CJ, LeBlanc GA, Ostby JS, Gray LE Jr.

    Endocrinology Branch, MD 72, Reproductive Toxicology Division, National Health and Environmental Effects Research Laboratory, U....

  17. Ethanol exposure alters zebrafish development: a novel model of fetal alcohol syndrome.

    PubMed

    Bilotta, Joseph; Barnett, Jalynn A; Hancock, Laura; Saszik, Shannon

    2004-01-01

    Prenatal exposure to alcohol has been shown to produce the overt physical and behavioral symptoms known as fetal alcohol syndrome (FAS) in humans. Also, it is believed that low concentrations and/or short durations of alcohol exposure can produce more subtle effects. The purpose of this study was to investigate the effects of embryonic ethanol exposure on the zebrafish (Danio rerio) in order to determine whether this species is a viable animal model for studying FAS. Fertilized embryos were reared in varying concentrations of ethanol (1.5% and 2.9%) and exposure times (e.g., 0-8, 6-24, 12-24, and 48-72 h postfertilization; hpf); anatomical measures including eye diameter and heart rate were compared across groups. Results found that at the highest concentration of ethanol (2.9%), there were more abnormal physical distortions and significantly higher mortality rates than any other group. Embryos exposed to ethanol for a shorter duration period (0-8 hpf) at a concentration of 1.5% exhibited more subtle effects such as significantly smaller eye diameter and lower heart rate than controls. These results indicate that embryonic alcohol exposure affects external and internal physical development and that the severity of these effects is a function of both the amount of ethanol and the timing of ethanol exposure. Thus, the zebrafish represents a useful model for examining basic questions about the effects of embryonic exposure to ethanol on development.

  18. Complex epithelial remodeling underlie the fusion event in early fetal development of the human penile urethra.

    PubMed

    Shen, Joel; Overland, Maya; Sinclair, Adriane; Cao, Mei; Yue, Xuan; Cunha, Gerald; Baskin, Laurence

    We recently described a two-step process of urethral plate canalization and urethral fold fusion to form the human penile urethra. Canalization ("opening zipper") opens the solid urethral plate into a groove, and fusion ("closing zipper") closes the urethral groove to form the penile urethra. We hypothesize that failure of canalization and/or fusion during human urethral formation can lead to hypospadias. Herein, we use scanning electron microscopy (SEM) and analysis of transverse serial sections to better characterize development of the human fetal penile urethra as contrasted to the development of the human fetal clitoris. Eighteen 7-13 week human fetal external genitalia specimens were analyzed by SEM, and fifteen additional human fetal specimens were sectioned for histologic analysis. SEM images demonstrate canalization of the urethral/vestibular plate in the developing male and female external genitalia, respectively, followed by proximal to distal fusion of the urethral folds in males only. The fusion process during penile development occurs sequentially in multiple layers and through the interlacing of epidermal "cords". Complex epithelial organization is also noted at the site of active canalization. The demarcation between the epidermis of the shaft and the glans becomes distinct during development, and the epithelial tag at the distal tip of the penile and clitoral glans regresses as development progresses. In summary, SEM analysis of human fetal specimens supports the two-zipper hypothesis of formation of the penile urethra. The opening zipper progresses from proximal to distal along the shaft of the penis and clitoris into the glans in identical fashion in both sexes. The closing zipper mechanism is active only in males and is not a single process but rather a series of layered fusion events, uniquely different from the simple fusion of two epithelial surfaces as occurs in formation of the palate and neural tube.

  19. Sexually dimorphic adaptations in basal maternal stress physiology during pregnancy and implications for fetal development.

    PubMed

    Giesbrecht, Gerald F; Campbell, Tavis; Letourneau, Nicole

    2015-06-01

    There is clear evidence of reciprocal exchange of information between the mother and fetus during pregnancy but the majority of research in this area has focussed on the fetus as a recipient of signals from the mother. Specifically, physiological signals produced by the maternal stress systems in response to the environment may carry valuable information about the state of the external world. Prenatal stress produces sex-specific adaptations within fetal physiology that have pervasive and long-lasting effects on development. Little is known, however, about the effects of sex-specific fetal signals on maternal adaptations to pregnancy. The current prospective study examined sexually dimorphic adaptations within maternal stress physiology, including the hypothalamic-adrenal-pituitary (HPA) axis and the autonomic nervous system (ANS) and associations with fetal growth. Using diurnal suites of saliva collected in early and late pregnancy, we demonstrate that basal cortisol and salivary alpha-amylase (sAA) differ by fetal sex. Women carrying female fetuses displayed greater autonomic arousal and flatter (but more elevated) diurnal cortisol patterns compared to women carrying males. Women with flatter daytime cortisol trajectories and more blunted sAA awakening responses also had infants with lower birth weight. These maternal adaptations are consistent with sexually dimorphic fetal developmental/evolutionary adaptation strategies that favor growth for males and conservation of resources for females. The findings provide new evidence to suggest that the fetus contributes to maternal HPA axis and ANS regulation during pregnancy and that these systems also contribute to the regulation of fetal growth.

  20. Leukemia Inhibitory Factor in Rat Fetal Lung Development: Expression and Functional Studies

    PubMed Central

    Nogueira-Silva, Cristina; Piairo, Paulina; Carvalho-Dias, Emanuel; Peixoto, Francisca O.; Moura, Rute S.; Correia-Pinto, Jorge

    2012-01-01

    Background Leukemia inhibitory factor (LIF) and interleukin-6 (IL-6) are members of the family of the glycoprotein 130 (gp130)-type cytokines. These cytokines share gp130 as a common signal transducer, which explains why they show some functional redundancy. Recently, it was demonstrated that IL-6 promotes fetal lung branching. Additionally, LIF has been implicated in developmental processes of some branching organs. Thus, in this study LIF expression pattern and its effects on fetal rat lung morphogenesis were assessed. Methodology/Principal Findings LIF and its subunit receptor LIFRα expression levels were evaluated by immunohistochemistry and western blot in fetal rat lungs of different gestational ages, ranging from 13.5 to 21.5 days post-conception. Throughout all gestational ages studied, LIF was constitutively expressed in pulmonary epithelium, whereas LIFRα was first mainly expressed in the mesenchyme, but after pseudoglandular stage it was also observed in epithelial cells. These results point to a LIF epithelium-mesenchyme cross-talk, which is known to be important for lung branching process. Regarding functional studies, fetal lung explants were cultured with increasing doses of LIF or LIF neutralizing antibodies during 4 days. MAPK, AKT, and STAT3 phosphorylation in the treated lung explants was analyzed. LIF supplementation significantly inhibited lung growth in spite of an increase in p44/42 phosphorylation. On the other hand, LIF inhibition significantly stimulated lung growth via p38 and Akt pathways. Conclusions/Significance The present study describes that LIF and its subunit receptor LIFRα are constitutively expressed during fetal lung development and that they have an inhibitory physiological role on fetal lung branching. PMID:22291973

  1. Environmental issues affecting CCT development

    SciTech Connect

    Reidy, M.

    1997-12-31

    While no final legislative schedule has been set for the new Congress, two issues with strong environmental ramifications which are likely to affect the coal industry seem to top the list of closely watched debates in Washington -- the Environmental Protection Agency`s proposed new ozone and particulate matter standards and utility restructuring. The paper discusses the background of the proposed standards, public comment, the Congressional review of regulations, other legislative options, and utility restructuring.

  2. Gene expression profile of androgen modulated genes in the murine fetal developing lung

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Background Accumulating evidences suggest that sex affects lung development. Indeed, a higher incidence of respiratory distress syndrome is observed in male compared to female preterm neonates at comparable developmental stage and experimental studies demonstrated an androgen-related delay in male lung maturation. However, the precise mechanisms underlying these deleterious effects of androgens in lung maturation are only partially understood. Methods To build up a better understanding of the effect of androgens on lung development, we analyzed by microarrays the expression of genes showing a sexual difference and those modulated by androgens. Lungs of murine fetuses resulting from a timely mating window of 1 hour were studied at gestational day 17 (GD17) and GD18, corresponding to the period of surge of surfactant production. Using injections of the antiandrogen flutamide to pregnant mice, we hunted for genes in fetal lungs which are transcriptionally modulated by androgens. Results Results revealed that 1844 genes were expressed with a sexual difference at GD17 and 833 at GD18. Many genes were significantly modulated by flutamide: 1597 at GD17 and 1775 at GD18. Datasets were analyzed by using in silico tools for reconstruction of cellular pathways. Between GD17 and GD18, male lungs showed an intensive transcriptional activity of proliferative pathways along with the onset of lung differentiation. Among the genes showing a sex difference or an antiandrogen modulation of their expression, we specifically identified androgen receptor interacting genes, surfactant related genes in particularly those involved in the pathway leading to phospholipid synthesis, and several genes of lung development regulator pathways. Among these latter, some genes related to Shh, FGF, TGF-beta, BMP, and Wnt signaling are modulated by sex and/or antiandrogen treatment. Conclusion Our results show clearly that there is a real delay in lung maturation between male and female in this period

  3. Long bone development in extrinsic fetal akinesia: an experimental study in rat fetuses subjected to oligohydramnios.

    PubMed

    Palacios, J; Rodríguez, J I; Ruiz, A; Sanchez, M; Alvarez, I; DeMiguel, E

    1992-07-01

    The transverse growth of long bones during intrauterine development was studied in rat fetuses subjected to experimental oligohydramnios in order to determine whether the skeletal changes, if any, in extrinsic fetal akinesia were similar to those observed in curarized rat fetuses with the fetal akinesia deformation sequence. Oligohydramnios was induced by daily extraction of amniotic fluid from day 17 of gestation until term. Experimental fetuses were compared with a sham-operated control group. The total area and perimeter, the absolute and relative amount of periosteum and bone trabeculae, the major and minor axes, and the elongation factor were measured in histological cross sections of the femoral metaphysis and diaphysis with an IBAS 1 image analysis system. Rat fetuses in the experimental group showed multiple articular contractures, redundant skin, and lung hypoplasia, a phenotype consistent with the oligohydramnios sequence. No alterations in femoral shape and transverse growth of the metaphysis and diaphysis were noted in these fetuses. These results suggest that the main mechanical factor related to fetal bone modeling is muscular strength, while motion would be mainly involved in fetal joint development.

  4. Body composition during fetal development and infancy through the age of 5 years

    PubMed Central

    Toro-Ramos, T; Paley, C; Pi-Sunyer, FX; Gallagher, D

    2015-01-01

    Fetal body composition is an important determinant of body composition at birth, and it is likely to be an important determinant at later stages in life. The purpose of this work is to provide a comprehensive overview by presenting data from previously published studies that report on body composition during fetal development in newborns and the infant/child through 5 years of age. Understanding the changes in body composition that occur both in utero and during infancy and childhood, and how they may be related, may help inform evidence-based practice during pregnancy and childhood. We describe body composition measurement techniques from the in utero period to 5 years of age, and identify gaps in knowledge to direct future research efforts. Available literature on chemical and cadaver analyses of fetal studies during gestation is presented to show the timing and accretion rates of adipose and lean tissues. Quantitative and qualitative aspects of fetal lean and fat mass accretion could be especially useful in the clinical setting for diagnostic purposes. The practicality of different pediatric body composition measurement methods in the clinical setting is discussed by presenting the assumptions and limitations associated with each method that may assist the clinician in characterizing the health and nutritional status of the fetus, infant and child. It is our hope that this review will help guide future research efforts directed at increasing the understanding of how body composition in early development may be associated with chronic diseases in later life. PMID:26242725

  5. Human cerebral organoids recapitulate gene expression programs of fetal neocortex development

    PubMed Central

    Camp, J. Gray; Badsha, Farhath; Florio, Marta; Kanton, Sabina; Gerber, Tobias; Wilsch-Bräuninger, Michaela; Lewitus, Eric; Sykes, Alex; Hevers, Wulf; Lancaster, Madeline; Knoblich, Juergen A.; Lachmann, Robert; Pääbo, Svante; Huttner, Wieland B.; Treutlein, Barbara

    2015-01-01

    Cerebral organoids—3D cultures of human cerebral tissue derived from pluripotent stem cells—have emerged as models of human cortical development. However, the extent to which in vitro organoid systems recapitulate neural progenitor cell proliferation and neuronal differentiation programs observed in vivo remains unclear. Here we use single-cell RNA sequencing (scRNA-seq) to dissect and compare cell composition and progenitor-to-neuron lineage relationships in human cerebral organoids and fetal neocortex. Covariation network analysis using the fetal neocortex data reveals known and previously unidentified interactions among genes central to neural progenitor proliferation and neuronal differentiation. In the organoid, we detect diverse progenitors and differentiated cell types of neuronal and mesenchymal lineages and identify cells that derived from regions resembling the fetal neocortex. We find that these organoid cortical cells use gene expression programs remarkably similar to those of the fetal tissue to organize into cerebral cortex-like regions. Our comparison of in vivo and in vitro cortical single-cell transcriptomes illuminates the genetic features underlying human cortical development that can be studied in organoid cultures. PMID:26644564

  6. Human cerebral organoids recapitulate gene expression programs of fetal neocortex development.

    PubMed

    Camp, J Gray; Badsha, Farhath; Florio, Marta; Kanton, Sabina; Gerber, Tobias; Wilsch-Bräuninger, Michaela; Lewitus, Eric; Sykes, Alex; Hevers, Wulf; Lancaster, Madeline; Knoblich, Juergen A; Lachmann, Robert; Pääbo, Svante; Huttner, Wieland B; Treutlein, Barbara

    2015-12-22

    Cerebral organoids-3D cultures of human cerebral tissue derived from pluripotent stem cells-have emerged as models of human cortical development. However, the extent to which in vitro organoid systems recapitulate neural progenitor cell proliferation and neuronal differentiation programs observed in vivo remains unclear. Here we use single-cell RNA sequencing (scRNA-seq) to dissect and compare cell composition and progenitor-to-neuron lineage relationships in human cerebral organoids and fetal neocortex. Covariation network analysis using the fetal neocortex data reveals known and previously unidentified interactions among genes central to neural progenitor proliferation and neuronal differentiation. In the organoid, we detect diverse progenitors and differentiated cell types of neuronal and mesenchymal lineages and identify cells that derived from regions resembling the fetal neocortex. We find that these organoid cortical cells use gene expression programs remarkably similar to those of the fetal tissue to organize into cerebral cortex-like regions. Our comparison of in vivo and in vitro cortical single-cell transcriptomes illuminates the genetic features underlying human cortical development that can be studied in organoid cultures.

  7. Hyperglycemia Differentially Affects Maternal and Fetal DNA Integrity and DNA Damage Response

    PubMed Central

    Moreli, Jusciele B.; Santos, Janine H.; Lorenzon-Ojea, Aline Rodrigues; Corrêa-Silva, Simone; Fortunato, Rodrigo S.; Rocha, Clarissa Ribeiro; Rudge, Marilza V.; Damasceno, Débora C.; Bevilacqua, Estela; Calderon, Iracema M.

    2016-01-01

    Objective: Investigate the DNA damage and its cellular response in blood samples from both mother and the umbilical cord of pregnancies complicated by hyperglycemia. Methods: A total of 144 subjects were divided into 4 groups: normoglycemia (ND; 46 cases), mild gestational hyperglycemia (MGH; 30 cases), gestational diabetes mellitus (GDM; 45 cases) and type-2 diabetes mellitus (DM2; 23 cases). Peripheral blood mononuclear cell (PBMC) isolation and/or leukocytes from whole maternal and umbilical cord blood were obtained from all groups at delivery. Nuclear and mitochondrial DNA damage were measured by gene-specific quantitative PCR, and the expression of mRNA and proteins involved in the base excision repair (BER) pathway were assessed by real-time qPCR and Western blot, respectively. Apoptosis was measured in vitro experiments by caspase 3/7 activity and ATP levels. Results: GDM and DM2 groups were characterized by an increase in oxidative stress biomarkers, an increase in nuclear and mitochondrial DNA damage, and decreased expression of mRNA (APE1, POLβ and FEN1) and proteins (hOGG1, APE1) involved in BER. The levels of hyperglycemia were associated with the in vitro apoptosis pathway. Blood levels of DNA damage in umbilical cord were similar among the groups. Newborns of diabetic mothers had increased expression of BER mRNA (APE1, POLβ and FEN1) and proteins (hOGG1, APE1, POLβ and FEN1). A diabetes-like environment was unable to induce apoptosis in the umbilical cord blood cells. Conclusions: Our data show relevant asymmetry between maternal and fetal blood cell susceptibility to DNA damage and apoptosis induction. Maternal cells seem to be more predisposed to changes in an adverse glucose environment. This may be due to differential ability in upregulating multiple genes involved in the activation of DNA repair response, especially the BER mechanism. However if this study shows a more effective adaptive response by the fetal organism, it also calls for

  8. Pregnancy outcomes, embryonic and fetal development in maternal exposure to Chinese medicines.

    PubMed

    Wang, Chi Chiu; Li, Lu; San Lau, Clara Bik; Leung, Ping Chung; Fung, Kwok Pui

    2013-12-01

    Chinese medicine is a common name for a collection of Chinese Materia Medica with therapeutic properties for medical treatment and healing. Similar to Western pharmaceuticals, Chinese medicines are not free of risk, and have the potential to cause adverse pregnancy outcomes and affect embryonic and fetal development. However, most clinical data concerning safety of maternal exposure to Chinese medicines during pregnancy are not available and the conclusion remains elusive. Some individual clinical trials of Chinese medicines reported some minor adverse effects during pregnancy, whereas few animal studies identified some adverse maternal and perinatal effects, as well as embryotoxic potentials. Basic research and mechanistic studies of the teratogenicity of Chinese medicines are still lacking. There is an urgent need for testing the safety of Chinese medicines before recommendation and commercialization. Until more reliable and scientific research data become available, clinicians should consider both the risks and benefits before recommending Chinese medicines to pregnant women. More systematic investigations of the safety implications of the use of Chinese medicines are highly recommended, in addition to more clinical trials with a larger sample size to confirm its safety during pregnancy. This review includes a critical overview of available clinical and experimental data and provides directions to study the safety issue of Chinese medicines for pregnancy.

  9. Impact of maternal undernutrition during the periconceptional period, fetal number, and fetal sex on the development of the hypothalamo-pituitary adrenal axis in sheep during late gestation.

    PubMed

    Edwards, L J; McMillen, I Caroline

    2002-05-01

    Evidence from epidemiologic, clinical, and experimental studies has shown that a suboptimal intrauterine environment during early pregnancy can alter fetal growth and gestation length and is associated with an increased prevalence of adult hypertension and cardiovascular disease. It has been postulated that maternal nutrient restriction may act to reprogram the development of the pituitary-adrenal axis, resulting in excess glucocorticoid exposure and adverse health outcomes in later life. It is unknown, however, whether maternal nutrient restriction during the periconceptional period alters the development of the fetal pituitary-adrenal axis or whether the effects of periconceptional undernutrition can be reversed by the provision of an adequate level of maternal nutrition throughout the remainder of pregnancy. We have investigated the effect of restricted periconceptional nutrition (70% of control feed allowance) from 60 days before until 7 days after mating and the effect of restricted gestational nutrition from Day 8 to 147 of gestation on the development of the fetal hypothalamo-pituitary adrenal (HPA) axis in the sheep. In these studies, we have also investigated the effects of fetal number and sex on the pituitary-adrenal responses to periconceptional and gestational undernutrition. In ewes maintained on a control diet throughout the periconceptional and gestational periods, fetal plasma ACTH concentrations were higher and the prepartum surge in cortisol occurred earlier in singletons compared with twins. Plasma ACTH concentrations were also significantly higher in male compared with female singletons, and in twin fetuses, the prepartum surge in cortisol concentrations occurred earlier in males than in females. Periconceptional undernutrition resulted in higher fetal plasma concentrations of ACTH between 110 and 145 days of gestation and a significantly greater cortisol response to a bolus dose of corticotropin-releasing hormone in twin, but not singleton

  10. Effects of silver nanoparticles on pregnant dams and embryo-fetal development in rats.

    PubMed

    Yu, Wook-Joon; Son, Jung-Mo; Lee, Jinsoo; Kim, Sung-Hwan; Lee, In-Chul; Baek, Hyung-Seon; Shin, In-Sik; Moon, Changjong; Kim, Sung-Ho; Kim, Jong-Choon

    2014-08-01

    Although the potential risk of silver nanoparticles (AgNPs) to humans has recently increased due to widespread application, the potential effects of AgNPs on embryo-fetal development have not yet been determined. This study investigated the potential effects of AgNPs on pregnant dams and embryo-fetal development after maternal exposure on gestational days (GD) 6-19 in rats. AgNPs were administered to pregnant rats by gavage at concentrations of 0, 100, 300, and 1000 mg/kg/day. All dams were subjected to Cesarean section on GD 20 and the fetuses were examined for signs of embryotoxic and teratogenic effects. Examinations of hepatic oxidant/antioxidant balance and serum biochemistry were also added to the routine developmental toxicity study. Treatment with AgNPs caused a decrease in catalase and glutathione reductase activities at ≥100 mg/kg/day and a reduction in glutathione content at 1000 mg/kg/day in maternal liver tissues. However, no treatment-related deaths or clinical signs were observed in any of the animals treated with AgNPs. No treatment-related differences in maternal body weight, food consumption, gross findings, serum biochemistry, organ weight, gestation index, fetal deaths, fetal and placental weights, sex ratio, or morphological alterations were observed between the groups. The results show that repeated oral doses of AgNPs during pregnancy caused oxidative stress in hepatic tissues at ≥100 mg/kg/day, but did not cause developmental toxicity at doses of up to 1000 mg/kg/day. The no-observed-adverse-effect level of AgNPs is considered to be <100 mg/kg/day for dams and 1000 mg/kg/day for embryo-fetal development.

  11. Role of the Placental Vitamin D Receptor in Modulating Feto-Placental Growth in Fetal Growth Restriction and Preeclampsia-Affected Pregnancies

    PubMed Central

    Murthi, Padma; Yong, Hannah E. J.; Ngyuen, Thy P. H.; Ellery, Stacey; Singh, Harmeet; Rahman, Rahana; Dickinson, Hayley; Walker, David W.; Davies-Tuck, Miranda; Wallace, Euan M.; Ebeling, Peter R.

    2016-01-01

    Fetal growth restriction (FGR) is a common pregnancy complication that affects up to 5% of pregnancies worldwide. Recent studies demonstrate that Vitamin D deficiency is implicated in reduced fetal growth, which may be rescued by supplementation of Vitamin D. Despite this, the pathway(s) by which Vitamin D modulate fetal growth remains to be investigated. Our own studies demonstrate that the Vitamin D receptor (VDR) is significantly decreased in placentae from human pregnancies complicated by FGR and contributes to abnormal placental trophoblast apoptosis and differentiation and regulation of cell-cycle genes in vitro. Thus, Vitamin D signaling is important for normal placental function and fetal growth. This review discusses the association of Vitamin D with fetal growth, the function of Vitamin D and its receptor in pregnancy, as well as the functional significance of a placental source of Vitamin D in FGR. Additionally, we propose that for Vitamin D to be clinically effective to prevent and manage FGR, the molecular mechanisms of Vitamin D and its receptor in modulating fetal growth requires further investigation. PMID:26924988

  12. Development of coagulation regulatory proteins in the fetal and neonatal lamb.

    PubMed

    Manco-Johnson, Marilyn J; Jacobson, Linda J; Hacker, Michele R; Townsend, Susan F; Murphy, James; Hay, William

    2002-10-01

    To investigate the development of coagulation regulatory proteins-protein C (PC), protein S (PS), and antithrombin (AT)-in relationship to the procoagulant protein factor X (FX), a chronically catheterized fetal ovine model was used. Infusion and sampling catheters were placed into pregnant ewes and their fetuses and maintained from mid-gestation. From a total of 110 fetuses, 17 lambs, and 63 ewes that were studied on one to 15 occasions, 212 fetal, 88 neonatal, and 157 maternal samples were obtained. Liver tissue was obtained from 31 fetuses and 15 ewes. Plasma levels of all proteins studied were higher in the ewe than in the fetus (p < 0.0001). Plasma levels of FX, PC, and PS achieved neonatal levels by mid-gestation with mild but significant decreases during mid- and late gestation. Fetal and early neonatal plasma concentrations of these vitamin K-dependent proteins fit a model with both quadratic (p < 0.01) and linear (p < 0.01) components. The discrepant levels in mRNA relative to plasma concentration were consistent with regulatory control beyond the level of transcription. In contrast, a simple linear increase in plasma protein levels was determined for the vitamin K-independent coagulation regulatory protein, AT (p for quadratic component > 0.05). This study suggests that fetal regulation of coagulation proteins follows characteristic patterns relative to the vitamin K dependence of the protein rather than its role as a procoagulant versus regulatory protein.

  13. Effect of zinc oxide nanoparticles on dams and embryo-fetal development in rats.

    PubMed

    Hong, Jeong-Sup; Park, Myeong-Kyu; Kim, Min-Seok; Lim, Jeong-Hyeon; Park, Gil-Jong; Maeng, Eun-Ho; Shin, Jae-Ho; Kim, Yu-Ri; Kim, Meyoung-Kon; Lee, Jong-Kwon; Park, Jin-A; Kim, Jong-Choon; Shin, Ho-Chul

    2014-01-01

    This study investigated the potential adverse effects of zinc oxide nanoparticles (ZnO(SM20[-]) NPs; negatively charged, 20 nm) on pregnant dams and embryo-fetal development after maternal exposure over the period of gestational days 5-19 with Sprague Dawley rats. ZnO(SM20(-)) NPs were administered to pregnant rats by gavage at 0 mg/kg/day, 100 mg/kg/day, 200 mg/kg/day, and 400 mg/kg/day. All dams were subjected to caesarean section on gestational day 20, and all the fetuses were examined for external, visceral, and skeletal alterations. Toxicity in the dams manifested as significantly decreased body weight at 400 mg/kg/day and decreased liver weight, and increased adrenal glands weight at 200 mg/kg/day and 400 mg/kg/day. However, no treatment-related difference in the number of corpora lutea, the number of implantation sites, the implantation rate (%), resorption, dead fetuses, litter size, fetal deaths, fetal and placental weights, and sex ratio were observed between the groups. Morphological examinations of the fetuses demonstrated no significant difference in the incidences of abnormalities between the groups. No significant difference was found in the Zn content of fetal tissue between the control and high-dose groups. These results showed that a 15-day repeated oral dose of ZnO(SM20(-)) was minimally maternotoxic at dose of 200 mg/kg/day and 400 mg/kg/day.

  14. When two obese parents are worse than one! Impacts on embryo and fetal development.

    PubMed

    McPherson, N O; Bell, V G; Zander-Fox, D L; Fullston, T; Wu, L L; Robker, R L; Lane, M

    2015-09-15

    The prevalence of overweight and obesity in reproductive-age adults is increasing worldwide. While the effects of either paternal or maternal obesity on gamete health and subsequent fertility and pregnancy have been reported independently, the combination of having both parents overweight/obese on fecundity and offspring health has received minimal attention. Using a 2 × 2 study design in rodents we established the relative contributions of paternal and maternal obesity on fetal and embryo development and whether combined paternal and maternal obesity had an additive effect. Here, we show that parental obesity reduces fetal and placental weights without altering pregnancy establishment and is not dependent on an in utero exposure to a high-fat diet. Interestingly combined parental obesity seemed to accumulate both the negative influences of paternal and maternal obesity had alone on embryo and fetal health rather than an amplification, manifested as reduced embryo developmental competency, reduced blastocyst cell numbers, impaired mitochondrial function, and alterations to active and repressive embryonic chromatin marks, resulting in aberrant placental gene expression and reduced fetal liver mtDNA copy numbers. Further understanding both the maternal cytoplasmic and paternal genetic interactions during this early developmental time frame will be vital for understanding how developmental programming is regulated and for the proposition of interventions to mitigate their effects.

  15. Effect of zinc oxide nanoparticles on dams and embryo–fetal development in rats

    PubMed Central

    Hong, Jeong-Sup; Park, Myeong-Kyu; Kim, Min-Seok; Lim, Jeong-Hyeon; Park, Gil-Jong; Maeng, Eun-Ho; Shin, Jae-Ho; Kim, Yu-Ri; Kim, Meyoung-Kon; Lee, Jong-Kwon; Park, Jin-A; Kim, Jong-Choon; Shin, Ho-Chul

    2014-01-01

    This study investigated the potential adverse effects of zinc oxide nanoparticles (ZnOSM20[−] NPs; negatively charged, 20 nm) on pregnant dams and embryo–fetal development after maternal exposure over the period of gestational days 5–19 with Sprague Dawley rats. ZnOSM20(−) NPs were administered to pregnant rats by gavage at 0 mg/kg/day, 100 mg/kg/day, 200 mg/kg/day, and 400 mg/kg/day. All dams were subjected to caesarean section on gestational day 20, and all the fetuses were examined for external, visceral, and skeletal alterations. Toxicity in the dams manifested as significantly decreased body weight at 400 mg/kg/day and decreased liver weight, and increased adrenal glands weight at 200 mg/kg/day and 400 mg/kg/day. However, no treatment-related difference in the number of corpora lutea, the number of implantation sites, the implantation rate (%), resorption, dead fetuses, litter size, fetal deaths, fetal and placental weights, and sex ratio were observed between the groups. Morphological examinations of the fetuses demonstrated no significant difference in the incidences of abnormalities between the groups. No significant difference was found in the Zn content of fetal tissue between the control and high-dose groups. These results showed that a 15-day repeated oral dose of ZnOSM20(−) was minimally maternotoxic at dose of 200 mg/kg/day and 400 mg/kg/day. PMID:25565833

  16. Effects of maternal undernutrition during late pregnancy on the development and function of ovine fetal liver.

    PubMed

    Gao, Feng; Liu, Yingchun; Li, Lingyao; Li, Ming; Zhang, Chongzhi; Ao, Changjin; Hou, Xianzhi

    2014-06-30

    This study investigated the effects of maternal undernutrition during late pregnancy on the development and function of ovine fetal liver. Eighteen ewes with singleton fetuses were allocated to three groups at d 90 of pregnancy: Restricted Group 1 (RG1, 0.175MJMEkgBW(-0.75)d(-1), n=6), Restricted Group 2 (RG2, 0.33MJMEkgBW(-0.75)d(-1), n=6) and a Control Group (CG, ad libitum, 0.67MJMEkgBW(-0.75)d(-1), n=6). Fetuses were recovered at slaughter on d 140. Fetuses in the RG1 group exhibited decreased (P<0.05) liver weight, total antioxidant capacity (T-AOC), superoxide dismutase activity (SOD), cholinesterase (CHE), total protein (TP), globulin (GLB), and alanine transaminase (ALT). In addition, intermediate changes were found in the RG2 fetuses, including decreased liver weight, T-AOC and CHE (P<0.05). In contrast, increases in fetal hepatic collagen fibers and reticular fibers, glutathione peroxidase (GSH-Px), malondialdehyde (MDA), nitric oxide (NO), nitric oxide synthase (NOs), monoamine oxidase (MAO), albumin (ALB)/GLB, aspartate transaminase (AST), and AST/ALT were found in the RG1 fetuses (P<0.05). The RG2 fetuses had increased fetal hepatic collagen fibers, NOs and MAO (P<0.05) relative to the control fetuses. These results indicate that impaired fetal hepatic growth, fibrosis, antioxidant imbalance and dysfunction were associated with maternal undernutrition.

  17. Maternal vitamin D deficiency alters fetal brain development in the BALB/c mouse.

    PubMed

    Hawes, Jazmin E; Tesic, Dijana; Whitehouse, Andrew J; Zosky, Graeme R; Smith, Jeremy T; Wyrwoll, Caitlin S

    2015-06-01

    Prenatal exposure to vitamin D is thought to be critical for optimal fetal neurodevelopment, yet vitamin D deficiency is apparent in a growing proportion of pregnant women. The aim of this study was to determine whether a mouse model of vitamin D-deficiency alters fetal neurodevelopment. Female BALB/c mice were placed on either a vitamin D control (2,195 IU/kg) or deficient (0 IU/kg) diet for 5 weeks prior to and during pregnancy. Fetal brains were collected at embryonic day (E) 14.5 or E17.5 for morphological and gene expression analysis. Vitamin D deficiency during pregnancy reduced fetal crown-rump length and head size. Moreover, lateral ventricle volume was reduced in vitamin D-deficient foetuses. Expression of neurotrophin genes brain-derived neurotrophic factor (Bdnf) and transforming growth factor-β1 (Tgf-β1) was altered, with Bdnf reduced at E14.5 and increased at E17.5 following vitamin D deficiency. Brain expression of forkhead box protein P2 (Foxp2), a gene known to be important in human speech and language, was also altered. Importantly, Foxp2 immunoreactive cells in the developing cortex were reduced in vitamin D-deficient female foetuses. At E17.5, brain tyrosine hydroxylase (TH) gene expression was reduced in females, as was TH protein localization (to identify dopamine neurons) in the substantia nigra of vitamin D-deficient female foetuses. Overall, we show that prenatal vitamin D-deficiency leads to alterations in fetal mouse brain morphology and genes related to neuronal survival, speech and language development, and dopamine synthesis. Vitamin D appears to play an important role in mouse neurodevelopment.

  18. Effects of melamine on pregnant dams and embryo-fetal development in rats.

    PubMed

    Kim, Sung-Hwan; Lee, In-Chul; Lim, Jeong-Hyeon; Shin, In-Sik; Moon, Changjong; Kim, Sung-Ho; Park, Seung-Chun; Kim, Hyoung-Chin; Kim, Jong-Choon

    2011-08-01

    There are worldwide concerns regarding the potential adverse effect of melamine. This study investigated the potential effects of melamine on pregnant dams and embryo-fetal development in Sprague-Dawley rats following maternal exposure on gestational days (GD) 6-20. Melamine was administered to pregnant rats by gavage at doses of 0, 200, 400 and 800 mg kg⁻¹ per day (n = 8-10 for each group). All dams were subjected to a Caesarean section on GD 21 and their fetuses were examined for morphological abnormalities. With administration of melamine at 800 mg kg⁻¹ per day, maternal toxicity manifested as increased incidences of clinical signs and death, lower body weight gain and food intake, and increases in heart, adrenal gland and kidney weights. Histopathological examinations revealed an increase in incidences of congestion, tubular necrosis/degeneration, crystals, casts, inflammatory cells in tubules, tubular dilation and tubular hyaline droplets in the maternal kidneys, while fetal kidneys (one fetus/litter) did not show any histopathological changes. Developmental toxic effects included a decrease in fetal weight, an increase in the incidence of skeletal variations and a delay in fetal ossification. No treatment-related maternal or developmental effects were observed at doses ≤ 400 mg kg⁻¹ per day. These results show that 15-day repeated oral dosing of melamine is embryo-/fetotoxic at a maternotoxic dose, but not teratogenic in rats. The no-observed-adverse-effect level of melamine for pregnant dams and embryo-fetal development is considered to be 400 mg kg⁻¹ per day.

  19. Bmp signaling at the tips of skeletal muscles regulates the number of fetal muscle progenitors and satellite cells during development.

    PubMed

    Wang, Hui; Noulet, Fanny; Edom-Vovard, Frédérique; Tozer, Samuel; Le Grand, Fabien; Duprez, Delphine

    2010-04-20

    Muscle progenitors, labeled by the transcription factor Pax7, are responsible for muscle growth during development. The signals that regulate the muscle progenitor number during myogenesis are unknown. We show, through in vivo analysis, that Bmp signaling is involved in regulating fetal skeletal muscle growth. Ectopic activation of Bmp signaling in chick limbs increases the number of fetal muscle progenitors and fibers, while blocking Bmp signaling reduces their numbers, ultimately leading to small muscles. The Bmp effect that we observed during fetal myogenesis is diametrically opposed to that previously observed during embryonic myogenesis and that deduced from in vitro work. We also show that Bmp signaling regulates the number of satellite cells during development. Finally, we demonstrate that Bmp signaling is active in a subpopulation of fetal progenitors and satellite cells at the extremities of muscles. Overall, our results show that Bmp signaling plays differential roles in embryonic and fetal myogenesis.

  20. Reading Enjoyment and Affective Development.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Reporting on Reading, 1978

    1978-01-01

    The articles in this publication offer ideas for developing enjoyment of reading in children. Among the topics discussed are the following: the need for teachers and parents to build children's self-esteem through increasing their experiences of success, their expectations of success, and the value they place on reading; methods for increasing…

  1. Inclusion of bovine lipoproteins and the vitamin E analogue, Trolox, during in vitro culture of bovine embryos changes both embryo and fetal development.

    PubMed

    Rooke, J A; Watt, R G; Ashworth, C J; McEvoy, T G

    2012-01-01

    This experiment investigated effects of lipoproteins and Trolox (vitamin E analogue) on bovine embryo and fetal development. The treatments were: in vitro culture (IVC) in synthetic oviducal fluid alone (SOF); with bovine lipoproteins (2% v/v; SOFLP); with Trolox (100μM; SOFT); and with lipoproteins and Trolox (SOFLPT). In vitro culture with lipoproteins increased fatty acid content of blastocysts (P<0.001) whereas inclusion of Trolox had no effect (P>0.05). Whereas lipoproteins reduced zygote development to blastocysts (P=0.03), Trolox facilitated increased development (P<0.001) and counteracted the reduction observed with lipoproteins (interaction, P=0.009). Lipoproteins also compromised (P<0.001) but presence of Trolox (P>0.05) had no effect on blastocyst morphological grade. Pregnancy rates resulting from synchronous transfer of IVP embryos were not affected by IVC treatment. At Day 70 of pregnancy, compared with SOF, fetal weight was lower in SOFLP but not SOFLPT (interaction, P<0.001). Liver weight (g kg(-1) fetal weight) was greater (P=0.03) in treatments containing Trolox. Placentome numbers were greater in SOF and SOFLPT compared with SOFLP and SOFT (interaction, P=0.002); superior embryo grades were also associated with increased numbers of placentomes (P=0.024). In conclusion, the interactive effects of lipoprotein and Trolox inclusion on in vitro embryo development were also evident in fetal development at Day 70.

  2. Impairment of Rat Fetal Beta-Cell Development by Maternal Exposure to Dexamethasone during Different Time-Windows

    PubMed Central

    Dumortier, Olivier; Theys, Nicolas; Ahn, Marie-Thérèse; Remacle, Claude; Reusens, Brigitte

    2011-01-01

    Aim Glucocorticoids (GCs) take part in the direct control of cell lineage during the late phase of pancreas development when endocrine and exocrine cell differentiation occurs. However, other tissues such as the vasculature exert a critical role before that phase. This study aims to investigate the consequences of overexposure to exogenous glucocorticoids during different time-windows of gestation for the development of the fetal endocrine pancreas. Methods Pregnant Wistar rats received dexamethasone acetate in their drinking water (1 µg/ml) during the last week or throughout gestation. Fetuses and their pancreases were analyzed at day 15 and 21 of gestation. Morphometrical analysis was performed on pancreatic sections after immunohistochemistry techniques and insulin secretion was evaluated on fetal islets collected in vitro. Results Dexamethasone given the last week or throughout gestation reduced the beta-cell mass in 21-day-old fetuses by respectively 18% or 62%. This was accompanied by a defect in insulin secretion. The alpha-cell mass was reduced similarly. Neither islet vascularization nor beta-cell proliferation was affected when dexamethasone was administered during the last week, which was however the case when given throughout gestation. When given from the beginning of gestation, dexamethasone reduced the number of cells expressing the early marker of endocrine lineage neurogenin-3 when analyzed at 15 days of fetal age. Conclusions GCs reduce the beta- and alpha-cell mass by different mechanisms according to the stage of development during which the treatment was applied. In fetuses exposed to glucocorticoids the last week of gestation only, beta-cell mass is reduced due to impairment of beta-cell commitment, whereas in fetuses exposed throughout gestation, islet vascularization and lower beta-cell proliferation are involved as well, amplifying the reduction of the endocrine mass. PMID:21991320

  3. Interleukin-7 negatively regulates the development of mature T cells in fetal thymus organ cultures.

    PubMed

    DeLuca, Dominick; Clark, Dawn R

    2002-05-01

    We added antibody specific for interleukin-7 (IL-7) to chimeric fetal thymus organ cultures (FTOC) to investigate the involvement of this cytokine at distinct stages of T cell development. We report that the neutralization of IL-7 early in fetal T cell development results in a decrease in the production of mature CD4 or CD8 ('single positive', SP) or CD4/8 negative ('double negative', DN) T cell phenotypes, as defined by their expression of CD3. This loss of T cell development was not complete, but it did include the development of gammadelta T cells. However, if IL-7 was neutralized at later stages of FTOC, the production of CD4/8 positive ('double positive', DP) T cells was increased, and if the addition of the antibody was delayed further, the production of mature SP T cells was increased. This last result could be extended to both alphabeta and gammadelta T cells. These data suggested that IL-7 played a negative regulatory role in the development of progressively mature T cells. Tissue sections of FTOC showed that IL-7 was expressed in the subcapsular region of the tissue where immature T cells reside. However, IL-7 was not detected in the medullary region where mature T cells are located. These data suggest that IL-7 not only supports the development of immature fetal T cells, but it may inhibit the development of mature T cells. The production of mature fetal T cells may, therefore, be delayed until their precursors enter the medullary microenvironment, where IL-7 production is low. In this way, T cells may be prevented from maturing until negative selection or anergy events eliminate or inactivate autoreactive clones.

  4. Information superhighway: Issues affecting development

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    1994-09-01

    Technological advances in the transmission of voice, video, and data are fostering fundamental changes in the telecommunications industry. For example, large local telephone companies plan to offer video services in competition with cable and broadcast television, while cable television companies plan to offer local telephone service over their wires in competition with the local telephone companies. The administration believes that these technological changes provide the opportunity to develop an 'Information Superhighway' that could provide every element of society with ready access to data, voice, and video communications. Concurrently, the Congress is considering sweeping changes to telecommunications regulations to keep pace with this dynamic industry. GAO prepared this report to serve as an overview of three key issues that decisionmakers may face as they deliberate telecommunications legislation; it focuses on three pivotal issues they face in formulating new telecommunications legislation: (1) managing the transition to a more competitive local telecommunications marketplace; (2) ensuring that all consumers have access to affordable telecommunications as competition develops; and (3) ensuring that the Information Superhighway provides adequate security, privacy, reliability, and interoperability.

  5. Steroidogenic Factor 1 Differentially Regulates Fetal and Adult Leydig Cell Development in Male Mice1

    PubMed Central

    Karpova, Tatiana; Ravichandiran, Kumarasamy; Insisienmay, Lovella; Rice, Daren; Agbor, Valentine; Heckert, Leslie L.

    2015-01-01

    The nuclear receptor steroidogenic factor 1 (SF-1, AD4BP, NR5A1) is a key regulator of the endocrine axes and is essential for adrenal and gonad development. Partial rescue of Nr5a1−/− mice with an SF-1-expressing transgene caused a hypomorphic phenotype that revealed its roles in Leydig cell development. In contrast to controls, all male rescue mice (Nr5a1−/−;tg+/0) showed varying signs of androgen deficiency, including spermatogenic arrest, cryptorchidism, and poor virilization. Expression of various Leydig cell markers measured by immunohistochemistry, Western blot analysis, and RT-PCR indicated fetal and adult Leydig cell development were differentially impaired. Whereas fetal Leydig cell development was delayed in Nr5a1−/−;tg+/0 embryos, it recovered to control levels by birth. In contrast, Sult1e1, Vcam1, and Hsd3b6 transcript levels in adult rescue testes indicated complete blockage in adult Leydig cell development. In addition, between Postnatal Days 8 and 12, peritubular cells expressing PTCH1, SF-1, and CYP11A1 were observed in control testes but not in rescue testes, indicating SF-1 is needed for either survival or differentiation of adult Leydig cell progenitors. Cultured prepubertal rat peritubular cells also expressed SF-1 and PTCH1, but Cyp11a1 was expressed only after treatment with cAMP and retinoic acid. Together, data show SF-1 is needed for proper development of fetal and adult Leydig cells but with distinct primary functions; in fetal Leydig cells, it regulates differentiation, whereas in adult Leydig cells it regulates progenitor cell formation and/or survival. PMID:26269506

  6. Fetal liver development requires a paracrine action of oncostatin M through the gp130 signal transducer.

    PubMed Central

    Kamiya, A; Kinoshita, T; Ito, Y; Matsui, T; Morikawa, Y; Senba, E; Nakashima, K; Taga, T; Yoshida, K; Kishimoto, T; Miyajima, A

    1999-01-01

    Fetal liver, the major site of hematopoiesis during embryonic development, acquires additional various metabolic functions near birth. Although liver development has been characterized biologically as consisting of several distinct steps, the molecular events accompanying this process are just beginning to be characterized. In this study, we have established a novel culture system of fetal murine hepatocytes and investigated factors required for development of hepatocytes. We found that oncostatin M (OSM), an interleukin-6 family cytokine, in combination with glucocorticoid, induced maturation of hepatocytes as evidenced by morphological changes that closely resemble more differentiated hepatocytes, expression of hepatic differentiation markers and intracellular glycogen accumulation. Consistent with these in vitro observations, livers from mice deficient for gp130, an OSM receptor subunit, display defects in maturation of hepatocytes. Interestingly, OSM is expressed in CD45(+) hematopoietic cells in the developing liver, whereas the OSM receptor is expressed predominantly in hepatocytes. These results suggest a paracrine mechanism of hepatogenesis; blood cells, transiently expanding in the fetal liver, produce OSM to promote development of hepatocytes in vivo. PMID:10205167

  7. Fetal-specific CD8+ cytotoxic T cell responses develop during normal human pregnancy and exhibit broad functional capacity.

    PubMed

    Lissauer, David; Piper, Karen; Goodyear, Oliver; Kilby, Mark D; Moss, Paul A H

    2012-07-15

    Tolerance of the semiallogeneic fetus presents a significant challenge to the maternal immune system during human pregnancy. T cells with specificity for fetal epitopes have been detected in women with a history of previous pregnancy, but it has been thought that such fetal-specific cells were generally deleted during pregnancy as a mechanism to maintain maternal tolerance of the fetus. We used MHC-peptide dextramer multimers containing an immunodominant peptide derived from HY to identify fetal-specific T cells in women who were pregnant with a male fetus. Fetal-specific CD8(+) T lymphocytes were observed in half of all pregnancies and often became detectable from the first trimester. The fetal-specific immune response increased during pregnancy and persisted in the postnatal period. Fetal-specific cells demonstrated an effector memory phenotype and were broadly functional. They retained their ability to proliferate, secrete IFN-γ, and lyse target cells following recognition of naturally processed peptide on male cells. These data show that the development of a fetal-specific adaptive cellular immune response is a normal consequence of human pregnancy and that unlike reports from some murine models, fetal-specific T cells are not deleted during human pregnancy. This has broad implications for study of the natural physiology of pregnancy and for the understanding of pregnancy-related complications.

  8. Fetal development of complex autonomic control evaluated from multiscale heart rate patterns.

    PubMed

    Hoyer, Dirk; Nowack, Samuel; Bauer, Stephan; Tetschke, Florian; Rudolph, Anja; Wallwitz, Ulrike; Jaenicke, Franziska; Heinicke, Esther; Götz, Theresa; Huonker, Ralph; Witte, Otto W; Schleussner, Ekkehard; Schneider, Uwe

    2013-03-01

    Development of the fetal autonomic nervous system's integrative capacity in relation to gestational age and emerging behavioral pattern is reflected in fetal heart rate patterns. Conventional indices of vagal and sympathetic rhythms cannot sufficiently reflect their complex interrelationship. Universal behavioral indices of developing complex systems may provide additional information regarding the maturating complex autonomic control. We investigated fetal magnetocardiographic recordings undertaken at 10-min intervals in active (n = 248) and quiet (n = 111) states between 22 and 39 wk gestational age. Standard deviation of heartbeat intervals, skewness, contribution of particular rhythms to the total power, and multiscale entropy were analyzed. The multiscale entropy methodology was validated for 10-min data sets. Age dependence was analyzed by linear regression. In the quiet state, contribution of sympathovagal rhythms and their complexity over a range of corresponding short scales increased with rising age, and skewness shifted from negative to positive values. In the active state, age dependencies were weaker. Skewness as the strongest parameter shifted in the same direction. Fluctuation amplitude and the complexity of scales associated with sympathovagal rhythms increased. We conclude that in the quiet state, stable complex organized rhythms develop. In the active state, however, increasing behavioral variability due to multiple internal coordinations, such as movement-related heart rate accelerations, and external influences develop. Hence, the state-selective assessment in association with developmental indices used herein may substantially improve evaluation of maturation age and early detection and interpretation of developmental problems in prenatal diagnosis.

  9. Fetal pain?

    PubMed

    Vanhatalo, S; van Nieuwenhuizen, O

    2000-05-01

    During the last few years a vivid debate, both scientifically and emotionally, has risen in the medical literature as to whether a fetus is able to feel pain during abortion or intrauterine surgery. This debate has mainly been inspired by the demonstration of various hormonal or motor reactions to noxious stimuli at very early stages of fetal development. The aims of this paper are to review the literature on development of the pain system in the fetus, and to speculate about the relationship between "sensing" as opposed to "feeling" pain and the number of reactions associated with painful stimuli. While a cortical processing of pain theoretically becomes possible after development of the thalamo-cortical connections in the 26th week of gestation, noxious stimuli may trigger complex reflex reactions much earlier. However, more important than possible painfulness is the fact that the noxious stimuli, by triggering stress responses, most likely affect the development of an individual at very early stages. Hence, it is not reasonable to speculate on the possible emotional experiences of pain in fetuses or premature babies. A clinically relevant aim is rather to avoid and/or treat any possibly noxious stimuli, and thereby prevent their potential adverse effects on the subsequent development.

  10. [Fetal magnetocardiography].

    PubMed

    van Leeuwen, P

    1997-09-01

    demonstrate the potential of the method in the examination of the fetal conductive system, arrhythmias, congential defects, growth, development of the autonomic system, acidosis and distress. Furthermore, first results in pathological cases indicate that it may become a valuable tool in prenatal diagnostics. Improvements in instrumentation as well as prospective multicenter studies with larger numbers of appropriate subjects are required to determine whether magnetocardiography will establish itself as a new tool in clinical fetal, surveillance.

  11. Placental development during early pregnancy in sheep: effects of embryo origin on fetal and placental growth and global methylation.

    PubMed

    Grazul-Bilska, Anna T; Johnson, Mary Lynn; Borowicz, Pawel P; Baranko, Loren; Redmer, Dale A; Reynolds, Lawrence P

    2013-01-01

    The origin of embryos including those created through assisted reproductive technologies might have profound effects on placental and fetal development, possibly leading to compromised pregnancies associated with poor placental development. To determine the effects of embryo origin on fetal size, and maternal and fetal placental cellular proliferation and global methylation, pregnancies were achieved through natural mating (NAT), or transfer of embryos generated through in vivo (NAT-ET), IVF, or in vitro activation (IVA). On Day 22 of pregnancy, fetuses were measured and placental tissues were collected to immunologically detect Ki67 (a marker of proliferating cells) and 5-methyl cytosine followed by image analysis, and determine mRNA expression for three DNA methyltransferases. Fetal length and labeling index (proportion of proliferating cells) in maternal caruncles (maternal placenta) and fetal membranes (fetal placenta) were less (P < 0.001) in NAT-ET, IVF, and IVA than in NAT. In fetal membranes, expression of 5-methyl cytosine was greater (P < 0.02) in IVF and IVA than in NAT. In maternal caruncles, mRNA expression for DNMT1 was greater (P < 0.01) in IVA compared with the other groups, but DNMT3A expression was less (P < 0.04) in NAT-ET and IVA than in NAT. In fetal membranes, expression of mRNA for DNMT3A was greater (P < 0.01) in IVA compared with the other groups, and was similar in NAT, NAT-ET, and IVF groups. Thus, embryo origin might have specific effects on growth and function of ovine uteroplacental and fetal tissues through regulation of tissue growth, DNA methylation, and likely other mechanisms. These data provide a foundation for determining expression of specific factors regulating placental and fetal tissue growth and function in normal and compromised pregnancies, including those achieved with assisted reproductive technologies.

  12. Pregnancy Distress Gets Under Fetal Skin: Maternal Ambulatory Assessment & Sex Differences in Prenatal Development

    PubMed Central

    Doyle, Colleen; Werner, Elizabeth; Feng, Tianshu; Lee, Seonjoo; Altemus, Margaret; Isler, Joseph R.

    2015-01-01

    Prenatal maternal distress is associated with an at-risk developmental profile, yet there is little fetal evidence of this putative in utero process. Moreover, the biological transmission for these maternal effects remains uncertain. In a study of n = 125 pregnant adolescents (ages 14–19), ambulatory assessments of daily negative mood (anger, frustration, irritation, stress), physical activity, blood pressure, heart rate (every 30 min over 24 hr), and salivary cortisol (six samples) were collected at 13–16, 24–27, 34–37 gestational weeks. Corticotropin-releasing hormone, C-reactive protein, and interleukin 6 from blood draws and 20 min assessments of fetal heart rate (FHR) and movement were acquired at the latter two sessions. On average, fetuses showed development in the expected direction (decrease in FHR, increase in SD of FHR and in the correlation of movement and FHR (“coupling”)). Maternal distress characteristics were associated with variations in the level and trajectory of fetal measures, and results often differed by sex. For males, greater maternal 1st and 2nd session negative mood and 2nd session physical activity were associated with lower overall FHR (p <.01), while 1st session cortisol was associated with a smaller increase in coupling (p <.01), and overall higher levels (p = .05)—findings suggesting accelerated development. For females, negative mood, cortisol, and diastolic blood pressure were associated with indications of relatively less advanced and accelerated outcomes. There were no associations between negative mood and biological variables. These data indicate that maternal psychobiological status influences fetal development, with females possibly more variously responsive to different exposures. PMID:25945698

  13. GATA-4 is required for sex steroidogenic cell development in the fetal mouse

    PubMed Central

    Bielinska, Malgorzata; Seehra, Amrita; Toppari, Jorma; Heikinheimo, Markku; Wilson, David B.

    2007-01-01

    The transcription factor GATA-4 is expressed in Sertoli cells, steroidogenic Leydig cells, and other testicular somatic cells. Previous studies have established that interaction between GATA-4 and its cofactor FOG-2 is necessary for proper Sry expression and all subsequent steps in testicular organogenesis, including testis cord formation and differentiation of both Sertoli and fetal Leydig cells. Since fetal Leydig cell differentiation depends on Sertoli cell-derived factors, it has remained unclear whether GATA-4 has cell autonomous role in Leydig cell development. We used two experimental systems to explore the role of GATA-4 in the ontogeny of testicular steroidogenic cells. First, chimeric mice were generated by injection of Gata4−/− ES cells into Rosa26 blastocysts. Analysis of the resultant chimeras showed that in developing testis Gata4−/− cells can contribute to fetal germ cells and interstitial fibroblasts but not fetal Leydig cells. Second, wild-type or Gata4−/− ES cells were injected into the flanks of intact or gonadectomized nude mice and the resultant teratomas examined for expression of steroidogenic markers. Wild-type but not Gata4−/− ES cells were capable of differentiating into gonadal-type steroidogenic lineages in teratomas grown in gonadectomized mice. In chimeric teratomas derived from mixtures of GFP-tagged Gata4+/+ ES cells and unlabeled Gata4−/− ES cells, sex steroidogenic cell differentiation was restricted to GFP-expressing cells. Collectively these data suggest that GATA-4 plays an integral role in the development of testicular steroidogenic cells. PMID:17096405

  14. Development of the stria vascularis and potassium regulation in the human fetal cochlea: Insights into hereditary sensorineural hearing loss

    PubMed Central

    de Groot, John C.M.J.; van Iperen, Liesbeth; Huisman, Margriet A.; Frijns, Johan H.M.

    2015-01-01

    ABSTRACT Sensorineural hearing loss (SNHL) is one of the most common congenital disorders in humans, afflicting one in every thousand newborns. The majority is of heritable origin and can be divided in syndromic and nonsyndromic forms. Knowledge of the expression profile of affected genes in the human fetal cochlea is limited, and as many of the gene mutations causing SNHL likely affect the stria vascularis or cochlear potassium homeostasis (both essential to hearing), a better insight into the embryological development of this organ is needed to understand SNHL etiologies. We present an investigation on the development of the stria vascularis in the human fetal cochlea between 9 and 18 weeks of gestation (W9–W18) and show the cochlear expression dynamics of key potassium‐regulating proteins. At W12, MITF+/SOX10+/KIT+ neural‐crest‐derived melanocytes migrated into the cochlea and penetrated the basement membrane of the lateral wall epithelium, developing into the intermediate cells of the stria vascularis. These melanocytes tightly integrated with Na+/K+‐ATPase‐positive marginal cells, which started to express KCNQ1 in their apical membrane at W16. At W18, KCNJ10 and gap junction proteins GJB2/CX26 and GJB6/CX30 were expressed in the cells in the outer sulcus, but not in the spiral ligament. Finally, we investigated GJA1/CX43 and GJE1/CX23 expression, and suggest that GJE1 presents a potential new SNHL associated locus. Our study helps to better understand human cochlear development, provides more insight into multiple forms of hereditary SNHL, and suggests that human hearing does not commence before the third trimester of pregnancy. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. Develop Neurobiol 75: 1219–1240, 2015 PMID:25663387

  15. Effect of alcohol exposure on fetal brain development

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sudheendran, Narendran; Bake, Shameena; Miranda, Rajesh C.; Larin, Kirill V.

    2013-02-01

    Alcohol consumption during pregnancy can be severely damage to the brain development in fetuses. This study investigates the effects of maternal ethanol consumption on brain development in mice embryos. Pregnant mice at gestational day 12.5 were intragastrically gavaged with ethanol (3g/Kg bwt) twice daily for three consecutive days. On gestational day 14.5, fetuses were collected and fixed in 4% paraformaldehyde and imaged using a swept-source optical coherence tomography (SSOCT) system. 3D images of the mice embryo brain were obtained and the volumes of the left and right ventricles of the brain were measured. The average volumes of the left and the right volumes of 5 embryos each alcohol-exposed and control embryos were measured to be 0.35 and 0.15 mm3, respectively. The results suggest that the left and right ventricle volumes of brain are much larger in the alcohol-exposed embryos as compared to control embryos indicating alcohol-induced developmental delay.

  16. Risk and protective factors in maternal-fetal attachment development.

    PubMed

    Pisoni, Camilla; Garofoli, Francesca; Tzialla, Chryssoula; Orcesi, Simona; Spinillo, Arsenio; Politi, Pierluigi; Balottin, Umberto; Manzoni, Paolo; Stronati, Mauro

    2014-09-01

    Prenatal attachment can be described as the parents' emotions, perceptions and behaviors that are related to the fetus. This relationship has been described as the most basic form of the human intimacy and represents the earlier internalized representation of the fetus that both parents typically acquire and elaborate during pregnancy. The quality of the relationship between an infant and his or her parent is an important factor influencing the child's later development, both cognitive and emotional. There is evidence - even though yet unclear - that demographic, perinatal and psychological variables may correlate with attachment. In this perspective, it is essential to recognize the factors influencing attachment of parents towards their fetus and to planning psychosocial interventions in antepartum units or in obstetric clinics, in order to preserve a positive physical and emotional development of the infant and to provide family-centered prenatal care. Particular attention should be paid to women hospitalized for a high-risk pregnancy, since this condition involves a high distress that often results in feelings of anxiety and depression, that can hinder an adequate mother-fetus attachment.

  17. Effect on fetal mouse development of exposure to MR imaging and gadopentetate dimeglumine.

    PubMed

    Rofsky, N M; Pizzarello, D J; Weinreb, J C; Ambrosino, M M; Rosenberg, C

    1994-01-01

    Pregnant mice were exposed to one of five regimens at 9.5 days of gestation: no treatment (group 1), intraperitoneal injection of normal saline (group 2), intraperitoneal injection of gadopentetate dimeglumine (group 3), intraperitoneal injection of gadopentetate dimeglumine and magnetic resonance (MR) exposure (group 4), and MR exposure alone (group 5). At 18 days of gestation, the mice were sacrificed and fetuses were removed and examined for the following end points: litter size, number alive or dead, fetal weight, extremity morphology, eye and ear development, and appearance of the head. A total of 739 fetuses were analyzed: group 1 (n = 161), group 2 (n = 149), group 3 (n = 142), group 4 (n = 136), and group 5 (n = 151). The only statistically significant difference was a lower mean fetal weight in the saline-injection group compared with the control group. The results show that MR exposure with and without gadopentetate dimeglumine had no adverse effect on the end points analyzed.

  18. High-throughput staining for the evaluation of fetal skeletal development in rats and rabbits.

    PubMed

    Redfern, Brian G; Wise, L David

    2007-06-01

    Typical developmental toxicity studies require the assessment of fetal skeletal development. Regulatory guidelines require the assessment of bone ossification and indicate preferences for an assessment of both ossified bone as well as cartilaginous elements. Current manual methods to process fetuses for skeletal examination, whether single or double staining, are laborious and time consuming, and ultimately extend the time before study interpretations. There is a definite need for a quick and efficient, yet reliable, procedure to generate stained fetal skeletons for analysis. A non-automated high-throughput method for single and double staining rat and rabbit fetuses for skeletal evaluations is described, which results in excellent quality specimens ready for evaluations in approximately 3 days for rats and 7 days for rabbits.

  19. Development of multiscale complexity and multifractality of fetal heart rate variability.

    PubMed

    Gierałtowski, Jan; Hoyer, Dirk; Tetschke, Florian; Nowack, Samuel; Schneider, Uwe; Zebrowski, Jan

    2013-11-01

    During fetal development a complex system grows and coordination over multiple time scales is formed towards an integrated behavior of the organism. Since essential cardiovascular and associated coordination is mediated by the autonomic nervous system (ANS) and the ANS activity is reflected in recordable heart rate patterns, multiscale heart rate analysis is a tool predestined for the diagnosis of prenatal maturation. The analyses over multiple time scales requires sufficiently long data sets while the recordings of fetal heart rate as well as the behavioral states studied are themselves short. Care must be taken that the analysis methods used are appropriate for short data lengths. We investigated multiscale entropy and multifractal scaling exponents from 30 minute recordings of 27 normal fetuses, aged between 23 and 38 weeks of gestational age (WGA) during the quiet state. In multiscale entropy, we found complexity lower than that of non-correlated white noise over all 20 coarse graining time scales investigated. Significant maturation age related complexity increase was strongest expressed at scale 2, both using sample entropy and generalized mutual information as complexity estimates. Multiscale multifractal analysis (MMA) in which the Hurst surface h(q,s) is calculated, where q is the multifractal parameter and s is the scale, was applied to the fetal heart rate data. MMA is a method derived from detrended fluctuation analysis (DFA). We modified the base algorithm of MMA to be applicable for short time series analysis using overlapping data windows and a reduction of the scale range. We looked for such q and s for which the Hurst exponent h(q,s) is most correlated with gestational age. We used this value of the Hurst exponent to predict the gestational age based only on fetal heart rate variability properties. Comparison with the true age of the fetus gave satisfying results (error 2.17±3.29 weeks; p<0.001; R(2)=0.52). In addition, we found that the normally

  20. Development of the Endocrine Pancreas in the Beagle Dog: From Fetal to Adult Life.

    PubMed

    Bricout-Neveu, Emilie; Pechberty, Severine; Reynaud, Karine; Maenhoudt, Cindy; José Lecomte, Marie; Ravassard, Philippe; Czernichow, Paul

    2017-03-14

    Our objectives were to describe, in Beagle dogs, the ontogenesis of beta (insulin-producing) and alpha (glucagon-producing) cells from fetal to early postnatal life and adulthood. In addition, to have some insight into interspecies comparison, Beagle dog pancreases were compared to pancreases from a Labrador and Chow Chow. At midgestation, the epithelium was dense, beta cells scarce, and alpha cells numerous and concentrated in the center of the pancreatic bud. From 36 to 45 days post conception (pc), beta cell numbers increased and the epithelium expanded and branched out. At 55 days pc, large beta cell aggregates were seen. At weaning, the islets were similar to those in adults, with limited alpha cells intermingled with numerous beta cells. Quantification of the Alpha to Beta cells ratio has shown a gradual increase of beta cells proportion throughout development. Similar findings were obtained in the 2 other breeds. In conclusion, in the fetal Beagle dog beta cells emerge from the pancreatic bud at midgestation, but the endocrine structure is mature only in early postnatal life. The ontogenesis of the endocrine pancreas demonstrated in dogs resembles that reported in rats and mice. In contrast, human beta cells appear earlier, at the beginning of the second trimester of gestation. Our study provides a detailed morphological description of pancreatic development in dogs but supplies no information on alpha- or beta-cell function during fetal life. The morphological data reported here provide a foundation for building physiological studies. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.

  1. Dynamics of spontaneous activity in the fetal macaque retina during development of retinogeniculate pathways.

    PubMed

    Warland, David K; Huberman, Andrew D; Chalupa, Leo M

    2006-05-10

    Correlated spontaneous activity in the form of retinal "waves" has been observed in a wide variety of developing animals, but whether retinal waves occur in the primate has not been determined previously. To address this issue, we recorded from isolated retinas using multielectrode arrays at six fetal ages: embryonic day 51 (E51), E55, E60, E67, E71, and E76. These recordings revealed that the fetal monkey retina is essentially silent at E51 and E55, with only few cells firing on rare occasions and without any obvious spatial or temporal order. Because previous work has shown that the magnocellular and parvocellular subdivisions of the dorsal lateral geniculate are selectively innervated during this early period, our results suggest that this process is unlikely to be regulated by retinal activity. Highly structured retinal waves were first observed at E60, >1 week before the segregation of eye-specific retinal dorsal lateral geniculate nucleus projections commences. The incidence of such waves decreased rapidly and progressively during the developmental period (E67-E76) when segregated eye-specific projections become established. Our findings indicate that retinal waves first occur in the fetal monkey at a remarkably early stage of development, >100 d before birth, and that this activity undergoes rapid changes in salient properties when eye-specific retinogeniculate projections are being formed.

  2. Prenatal development of the fetal thoracic sympathetic trunk in sheep (Ovis aries).

    PubMed

    Nourinezhad, Jamal; Gilanpour, Hassan; Radmehr, Bijan

    2013-10-01

    This study aims at clarifying the detailed morphological and topographical changes of the thoracic part of the sympathetic trunk of sheep during fetal development. Bilateral micro-dissection of the thoracic sympathetic trunk was performed on 40 sheep fetuses aged 6-20 weeks (18 males and 22 females) under a stereomicroscope. The cervicothoracic ganglion (CTG) was observed on 75/80 sides (93.7%) and was composed of the caudal cervical and the first thoracic ganglia on 45/80 sides (56.2%), and of the caudal cervical and the first two thoracic ganglia on 30/80 sides (37.5%). The presence of the two last (12th-13th) thoracic ganglia was not constant. The influence of the sex, the side of the body, and the ages of the fetus on the morphology and topography of the thoracic sympathetic trunk in sheep were identified. In spite of the differences in the morphology and topography of the thoracic sympathetic trunk between early and late fetal developments, the morphology and topography of the older fetal thoracic sympathetic trunk tended to be similar to that of the adult sheep. To comprehend the comparative morphology of the fetal thoracic sympathetic trunk more completely, our results were compared with previous studies. Consequently, differences and similarities in the composition and position of the CTG, presence of single caudal cervical ganglion without fusion to the thoracic ganglia, and absence of the thoracic ganglia, and presence of splitting of the interganglionic branch were found among sheep, pig, and human fetuses. Therefore, sheep might be the appropriate animal model to be applied in human sympathetic nervous system.

  3. Dose-response effects of diphenylhydantoin on pregnant dams and embryo-fetal development in rats.

    PubMed

    Kim, Sung-Hwan; Lee, In-Chul; Baek, Hyung-Seon; Lim, Jeong-Hyeon; Moon, Changjong; Shin, Dong-Ho; Kim, Sung-Ho; Park, Seung-Chun; Kim, Jong-Choon

    2012-10-01

    Despite the widespread use of diphenylhydantoin (DPH), there is a lack of reliable information on the teratogenic effects, correlation with maternal and developmental toxicity, and dose-response relationship of DPH. This study investigated the dose-response effects of DPH on pregnant dams and embryo-fetal development as well as the relationship between maternal and developmental toxicity. DPH was orally administered to pregnant rats from gestational days 6 through 15 at 0, 50, 150, and 300 mg/kg/day. At 300 mg/kg, maternal toxicity including increased clinical signs, suppressed body weight, decreased food intake, and increased weights of adrenal glands, liver, kidneys, and brain were observed in dams. Developmental toxicity, including a decrease in fetal and placental weights, increased incidence of morphological alterations, and a delay in fetal ossification delay also occurred. At 150 mg/kg, maternal toxicity manifested as an increased incidence of clinical signs, reduced body weight gain and food intake, and increased weights of adrenal glands and brain. Only minimal developmental toxicity, including decreased placental weight and an increased incidence of visceral and skeletal variations, was observed. No treatment-related maternal or developmental effects were observed at 50 mg/kg. These results show that DPH is minimally embryotoxic at a minimal maternotoxic dose (150 mg/kg/day) but is embryotoxic and teratogenic at an overt maternotoxic dose (300 mg/kg/day). Under these experimental conditions, the no-observed-adverse-effect level of DPH for pregnant dams and embryo-fetal development is considered to be 50 mg/kg/day. These data indicate that DPH is not a selective developmental toxicant in the rat.

  4. Advances in fetal surgery

    PubMed Central

    Pedreira, Denise Araujo Lapa

    2016-01-01

    ABSTRACT This paper discusses the main advances in fetal surgical therapy aiming to inform health care professionals about the state-of-the-art techniques and future challenges in this field. We discuss the necessary steps of technical evolution from the initial open fetal surgery approach until the development of minimally invasive techniques of fetal endoscopic surgery (fetoscopy). PMID:27074241

  5. Fetal behavioral teratology.

    PubMed

    Visser, Gerard H A; Mulder, Eduard J H; Tessa Ververs, F F

    2010-10-01

    Ultrasound studies of fetal motor behavior provide direct – in vivo – insight in the functioning of the motor component of the fetal central nervous system. In this article, studies are reviewed showing changes in the first timetable of appearance of fetal movements, changes in quality and/or quantity of movements and disturbances in the development of fetal behavioral states in case of endogenous malfunctions, maternal diseases and exogenous behavioral teratogens.

  6. Intrauterine Cannabis Exposure Affects Fetal Growth Trajectories: The Generation R Study

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    El Marroun, Hanan; Tiemeier, Henning; Steegers, Eric A. P.; Jaddoe, Vincent W. V.; Hofman, Albert; Verhulst, Frank C.; van den Brink, Wim; Huizink, Anja C.

    2009-01-01

    Objective: Cannabis is the most commonly consumed illicit drug among pregnant women. Intrauterine exposure to cannabis may result in risks for the developing fetus. The importance of intrauterine growth on subsequent psychological and behavioral child development has been demonstrated. This study examined the relation between maternal cannabis use…

  7. Embryo-fetal development toxicity of honokiol microemulsion intravenously administered to pregnant rats.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Qianqian; Ye, Xiangfeng; Wang, Lingzhi; Peng, Bangjie; Zhang, Yingxue; Bao, Jie; Li, Wanfang; Wei, Jinfeng; Wang, Aiping; Jin, Hongtao; Chen, Shizhong

    2016-02-01

    The aim of this study was to evaluate the embryo-fetal development toxicity of honokiol microemulsion. The drug was intravenously injected to pregnant SD rats at dose levels of 0, 200, 600 and 2000 μg/kg/day from day 6-15 of gestation. All the pregnant animals were observed for body weights and any abnormal changes and subjected to caesarean-section on gestation day (GD) 20; all fetuses obtained from caesarean-section were assessed by external inspection, visceral and skeletal examinations. No treatment-related external alterations as well as visceral and skeletal malformations were observed in honokiol microemulsion groups. There was no significant difference in the body weight gain of the pregnant rats, average number of corpora lutea, and the gravid uterus weight in the honokiol microemulsion groups compared with the vehicle control group. However, at a dose level of 2000 μg/kg/day, there was embryo-fetal developmental toxicity observed, including a decrease in the body length and tail length of fetuses. In conclusion, the no-observed-adverse-effect level (NOAEL) of honokiol microemulsion is 600 μg/kg/day, 75 times above the therapeutic dosage and it has embryo-fetal toxicity at a dose level of 2000 μg/kg/day, which is approximately 250 times above the therapeutic dosage.

  8. Development of quantitative Doppler indices for uteroplacental and fetal blood flow during the third trimester.

    PubMed

    Joern, H; Funk, A; Goetz, M; Kuehlwein, H; Klein, A; Fendel, H

    1996-01-01

    The aim of our study was to describe the development of uteroplacental and fetal blood flow during the third trimester. Doppler examination was carried out on 393 uncomplicated pregnancies with uncomplicated term delivery. Using a pulsed color Doppler, we calculated the maximum systolic, mean and maximum end-diastolic velocity after correcting the angle of insonation. Patients under tocolysis or other medication influencing blood flow parameters were excluded from this cross-sectional study. Summarizing the results gained by Doppler ultrasound investigation of the uteroplacental and fetal blood vessels, we created quantiles as quantitative Doppler indices for the maximum systolic, mean (TAMX = time averaged maximum velocity) and maximum end-diastolic velocity. The following conclusions could be drawn: (1) resistance to the blood flow in the maternal portion of the placenta does not change during the third trimester; (2) resistance to the blood flow on the fetal side of the placenta decreases up to week 42 of gestation; (3) cerebral vascular resistance decreases constantly up to gestational week 42; and (4) vascular resistance to the blood flow of the kidney decreases only slightly during the third trimester. This study offers clinically important values for quantitative Doppler flow velocimetry for the first time. We hope that our findings improve the usefulness of Doppler ultrasound as a diagnostic tool in obstetrical management.

  9. Structural development of human brain white matter from mid-fetal to perinatal stage

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ouyang, Austin; Yu, Qiaowen; Mishra, Virendra; Chalak, Lina; Jeon, Tina; Sivarajan, Muraleedharan; Jackson, Greg; Rollins, Nancy; Liu, Shuwei; Huang, Hao

    2015-03-01

    The structures of developing human brain white matter (WM) tracts can be effectively quantified by DTI-derived metrics, including fractional anisotropy (FA), mean, axial and radial diffusivity (MD, AD and RD). However, dynamics of WM microstructure during very early developmental period from mid-fetal to perinatal stage is unknown. It is difficult to accurately measure microstructural properties of these WM tracts due to severe contamination from cerebrospinal fluid (CSF). In this study, high resolution DTI of fetal brains at mid-fetal stage (20 weeks of gestation or 20wg), 19 brains in the middle of 3rd trimester (35wg) and 17 brains around term (40wg) were acquired. We established first population-averaged DTI templates at these three time points and extracted WM skeleton. 16 major WM tracts in limbic, projection, commissural and association tract groups were traced with DTI tractography in native space. The WM skeleton in the template space was inversely transformed back to the native space for measuring core WM microstructures of each individual tract. Continuous microstructural enhancement and volumetric increase of WM tracts were found from 20wg to 40wg. The microstructural enhancement from FA measurement is decelerated in late 3rd trimester compared to mid-fetal to middle 3rd trimester, while volumetric increase of prefrontal WM tracts is accelerated. The microstructural enhancement from 35wg to 40wg is heterogeneous among different tract groups with microstructures of association tracts undergoing most dramatic change. Besides decreases of RD indicating active myelination, the decrease of AD for most WM tracts during late 3rd trimester suggests axonal packing process.

  10. Development and Function of the Human Fetal Adrenal Cortex: A Key Component in the Feto-Placental Unit

    PubMed Central

    Ishimoto, Hitoshi

    2011-01-01

    Continuous efforts have been devoted to unraveling the biophysiology and development of the human fetal adrenal cortex, which is structurally and functionally unique from other species. It plays a pivotal role, mainly through steroidogenesis, in the regulation of intrauterine homeostasis and in fetal development and maturation. The steroidogenic activity is characterized by early transient cortisol biosynthesis, followed by its suppressed synthesis until late gestation, and extensive production of dehydroepiandrosterone and its sulfate, precursors of placental estrogen, during most of gestation. The gland rapidly grows through processes including cell proliferation and angiogenesis at the gland periphery, cellular migration, hypertrophy, and apoptosis. Recent studies employing modern technologies such as gene expression profiling and laser capture microdissection have revealed that development and/or function of the fetal adrenal cortex may be regulated by a panoply of molecules, including transcription factors, extracellular matrix components, locally produced growth factors, and placenta-derived CRH, in addition to the primary regulator, fetal pituitary ACTH. The role of the fetal adrenal cortex in human pregnancy and parturition appears highly complex, probably due to redundant and compensatory mechanisms regulating these events. Mounting evidence indicates that actions of hormones operating in the human feto-placental unit are likely mediated by mechanisms including target tissue responsiveness, local metabolism, and bioavailability, rather than changes only in circulating levels. Comprehensive study of such molecular mechanisms and the newly identified factors implicated in adrenal development should help crystallize our understanding of the development and physiology of the human fetal adrenal cortex. PMID:21051591

  11. Fetal development

    MedlinePlus

    ... from the first day of the mother's last menstrual cycle to the current date. It is measured in ... uterine wall. At this point in the mother's menstrual cycle, the lining of the uterus is thick with ...

  12. The expression of thyroid hormone transporters in the human fetal cerebral cortex during early development and in N-Tera-2 neurodifferentiation.

    PubMed

    Chan, S-Y; Martín-Santos, A; Loubière, L S; González, A M; Stieger, B; Logan, A; McCabe, C J; Franklyn, J A; Kilby, M D

    2011-06-01

    Associations of neurological impairment with mutations in the thyroid hormone (TH) transporter, MCT8, and with maternal hypothyroxinaemia, suggest that THs are crucial for human fetal brain development. It has been postulated that TH transporters regulate the cellular supply of THs within the fetal brain during development. This study describes the expression of TH transporters in the human fetal cerebral cortex (7–20 weeks gestation) and during retinoic acid induced neurodifferentiation of the human N-Tera-2 (NT2) cell line, in triiodothyronine (T3) replete and T3-depleted media. Compared with adult cortex, mRNAs encoding OATP1A2, OATP1C1, OATP3A1 variant 2, OATP4A1, LAT2 and CD98 were reduced in fetal cortex at different gestational ages, whilst mRNAs encoding MCT8, MCT10, OATP3A1 variant 1 and LAT1 were similar. From the early first trimester, immunohistochemistry localised MCT8 and MCT10 to the microvasculature and to undifferentiated CNS cells. With neurodifferentiation, NT2 cells demonstrated declining T3 uptake, accompanied by reduced expressions of MCT8, LAT1, CD98 and OATP4A1. T3 depletion significantly reduced MCT10 and LAT2 mRNA expression at specific time points during neurodifferentiation but there were no effects upon T3 uptake, neurodifferentiation marker expression or neurite lengths and branching. MCT8 repression also did not affect NT2 neurodifferentiation. In conclusion, many TH transporters are expressed in the human fetal cerebral cortex from the first trimester, which could regulate cellular TH supply during early development. However, human NT2 neurodifferentiation is not dependent upon T3 or MCT8 and there were no compensatory changes to promote T3 uptake in a T3-depleted environment.

  13. Fetal programming of overweight through the microbiome: boys are disproportionately affected.

    PubMed

    Kozyrskyj, A L; Kalu, R; Koleva, P T; Bridgman, S L

    2016-02-01

    Maternal and childhood obesity in pregnancy are worrisome public health issues facing our world today. New gene sequencing methods have advanced our knowledge of the disruptive effect of birth interventions and postnatal exposures on the maturation of gut microbiota and immunity during infancy. Yet, little is known about the impact of maternal pregnancy overweight on gut microbes and related processes, and how this may affect overweight risk in offspring. To address this gap in knowledge, we surveyed human studies for evidence in children, infants and pregnant women to piece together the limited literature and generate hypotheses for future investigation. From this literature, we learned that higher Lactobacillus yet lower Bacteroides spp. colonization of gut microbiota within 3 months of birth predicted risk for infant and child overweight. The abundance of bifidobacteria and staphylococci also appeared to play a role in the association with overweight, as did infant fecal immunoglobulin A levels, glycoproteins of the gut immune system that are acquired from breast milk and produced by the infant. We proposed that pregnancy overweight influences the compositional structure of gut microbiota in infants through vertical transfer of microbiota and/or their metabolites during pregnancy, delivery and breastfeeding. Finally, we brought forward emerging evidence on sex dimorphism, as well as ethnic and geographic variation, in reported associations between maternal overweight-induced gut microbiota dysbiosis and overweight risk.

  14. Development of cerebellar connectivity in human fetal brains revealed by high angular resolution diffusion tractography.

    PubMed

    Takahashi, Emi; Hayashi, Emiko; Schmahmann, Jeremy D; Grant, P Ellen

    2014-08-01

    High angular resolution diffusion imaging (HARDI) tractography has provided insights into major white matter pathways and cortical development in the human fetal cerebrum. Our objective in this study was to further apply HARDI tracography to the developing human cerebellum ranging from fetal to adult stages, to outline in broad strokes the 3-dimensional development of white matter and local gray matter organization in the cerebellum. We imaged intact fixed fetal cerebellum specimens at 17 gestational weeks (W), 21W, 31W, 36W, and 38W along with an adult cerebellum for comparison. At the earliest gestational age studied (17W), coherent pathways that formed the superior, middle, and inferior cerebellar peduncles were already detected, but pathways between deep cerebellar nuclei and the cortex were not observed until after 38W. At 36-38W, we identified emerging regional specification of the middle cerebellar peduncle. In the cerebellar cortex, we observed disappearance of radial organization in the sagittal orientation during the studied developmental stages similar to our previous observations in developing cerebral cortex. In contrast, in the axial orientation, cerebellar cortical pathways emerged first sparsely (31W) and then with increased prominence at 36-38W with pathways detected both in the radial and tangential directions to the cortical surface. The cerebellar vermis first contained only pathways tangential to the long axes of folia (17-21W), but pathways parallel to the long axes of folia emerged between 21 and 31W. Our results show the potential for HARDI tractography to image developing human cerebellar connectivity.

  15. Involvement of the SLIT/ROBO pathway in follicle development in the fetal ovary.

    PubMed

    Dickinson, Rachel E; Hryhorskyj, Lynn; Tremewan, Hannah; Hogg, Kirsten; Thomson, Axel A; McNeilly, Alan S; Duncan, W Colin

    2010-02-01

    In humans and domestic mammals, pivotal processes in ovary development, including primordial follicle assembly, occur prenatally. These events are essential for determining fertility in adult life; however, they remain poorly understood at the mechanistic level. In mammals, the SLITs (SLIT1, SLIT2 and SLIT3) and their ROBO (ROBO1, ROBO2, ROBO3/RIG-1 and ROBO4/MAGIC ROBO) receptors regulate neural, leukocyte, vascular smooth muscle cell and endothelial cell migration. In addition, the SLIT/ROBO pathway has functional roles in embryonic development and in the adult ovary by inhibiting cell migration and promoting apoptosis. We therefore characterised follicle formation and investigated the expression and localisation of the ROBO/SLIT pathway in the ovine fetal ovary. Using RT-PCR, we identified SLIT2, SLIT3, ROBO1, ROBO2 and ROBO4 in sheep ovaries harvested across gestation. The real-time quantitative PCR results implied that ROBO2 expression and ROBO4 expression were elevated during the early stages of follicle formation and stayed abundant during primordial follicle maturation (P<0.05). Immunohistochemistry examination demonstrated that ROBO1 was localised to the pre-granulosa cells, while ROBO2, ROBO4 and SLIT2 were expressed in the oocytes of the developing primordial follicle. This indicates that in the fetal ovary, SLIT-ROBO signalling may require an autocrine and paracrine interaction. Furthermore, at the time of increased SLIT-ROBO expression, there was a significant reduction in the number of proliferating oocytes in the developing ovary (P<0.0001). Overall, these results suggest, for the first time, that the SLIT-ROBO pathway is expressed at the time of follicle formation during fetal ovary development.

  16. Fetal Exposure to Sertraline Hydrochloride Impairs Pancreatic β-Cell Development.

    PubMed

    De Long, Nicole E; Gutgesell, Marie K; Petrik, James J; Holloway, Alison C

    2015-06-01

    Ten percent to 15% of women take selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI) antidepressants during pregnancy. Offspring exposed to SSRIs are more likely to have low birth weight; this is associated with an increased risk of development of diabetes in adulthood in part due to altered pancreatic development. The effects of perinatal exposure to SSRIs on pancreatic development are unknown. Therefore, the objective of this study was to determine the effect of fetal exposure to sertraline hydrochloride on pregnancy outcomes and pancreatic development. Wistar rats were given vehicle (n = 5) or sertraline hydrochloride (10 mg/kg/d; n = 8) via daily subcutaneous injection from the confirmation of mating until parturition. Results from this animal model demonstrated that offspring born to sertraline-exposed dams have no changes in birth weight but had a reduction in pancreatic β-cell area. The altered pancreatic islet development was a result of altered gene expression regulating islet development and survival. Therefore, fetal exposure to sertraline reduces β-cell capacity at birth, raising concerns regarding the long-term metabolic sequelae of such exposures.

  17. Effect of maternal undernutrition in early gestation on the development of fetal myofibres in the guinea-pig.

    PubMed

    Dwyer, C M; Madgwick, A J; Ward, S S; Stickland, N C

    1995-01-01

    alone (ER), therefore, resulted in a biceps brachii fibre number deficit similar to that caused by restriction throughout gestation only if the period of restriction extended as far as Day 25. Furthermore, fetal weight at term was impaired by short-term nutritional restriction in early gestation. Restriction in the last two-thirds of gestation, following an ad libitum diet in the first third, caused a reduction in biceps fibre number and had a severe effect on the maintenance of pregnancy. It is probable that undernutrition in early gestation had an indirect effect on muscle fibre number by affecting the development of the placenta. This could be avoided by nutritional rehabilitation before Day 25 of gestation, but appeared to be permanent thereafter. Undernutrition after Day 25 may have had a direct effect on the development of secondary fibres.

  18. Growth in Inuit children exposed to polychlorinated biphenyls and lead during fetal development and childhood

    PubMed Central

    Dallaire, Renée; Dewailly, Éric; Ayotte, Pierre; Forget-Dubois, Nadine; Jacobson, Sandra W.; Jacobson, Joseph L.; Muckle, Gina

    2014-01-01

    Background Because of their geographical location and traditional lifestyle, Canadian Inuit children are highly exposed to polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) and lead (Pb), environmental contaminants that are thought to affect fetal and child growth. We examined the associations of these exposures with the fetal and postnatal growth of Inuit children. Methods We conducted a prospective cohort study among Inuit from Nunavik (Arctic Québec). Mothers were recruited at their first prenatal visit; children (n = 290) were evaluated at birth and at 8–14 years of age. Concentrations of PCB 153 and Pb were determined in umbilical cord and child blood. Weight, height and head circumference were measured at birth and during childhood. Results Cord blood PCB 153 concentrations were not associated with anthropometric measurements at birth or school age, but child blood PCB 153 concentrations were associated with reduced weight, height and head circumference during childhood. There was no association between cord Pb levels and anthropometric outcomes at birth, but cord blood Pb was related to smaller height and a tendency to a smaller head circumference during childhood. Interpretation Our results suggest that chronic exposure to PCBs during childhood is negatively associated with skeletal growth and weight, while prenatal Pb exposure is related to reduce growth during childhood. This study is the first to link prenatal Pb exposure to poorer growth in school-age children. PMID:25042032

  19. Environmental Factors Affecting Preschoolers' Motor Development

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Venetsanou, Fotini; Kambas, Antonis

    2010-01-01

    The process of development occurs according to the pattern established by the genetic potential and also by the influence of environmental factors. The aim of the present study was to focus on the main environmental factors affecting motor development. The review of the literature revealed that family features, such as socioeconomic status,…

  20. Impacts of arginine nutrition on embryonic and fetal development in mammals.

    PubMed

    Wu, Guoyao; Bazer, Fuller W; Satterfield, M Carey; Li, Xilong; Wang, Xiaoqiu; Johnson, Gregory A; Burghardt, Robert C; Dai, Zhaolai; Wang, Junjun; Wu, Zhenlong

    2013-08-01

    Embryonic loss and intrauterine growth restriction (IUGR) are significant problems in humans and other animals. Results from studies involving pigs and sheep have indicated that limited uterine capacity and placental insufficiency are major factors contributing to suboptimal reproduction in mammals. Our discovery of the unusual abundance of the arginine family of amino acids in porcine and ovine allantoic fluids during early gestation led to the novel hypothesis that arginine plays an important role in conceptus (embryo and extra-embryonic membranes) development. Arginine is metabolized to ornithine, proline, and nitric oxide, with each having important physiological functions. Nitric oxide is a vasodilator and angiogenic factor, whereas ornithine and proline are substrates for uterine and placental synthesis of polyamines that are key regulators of gene expression, protein synthesis, and angiogenesis. Additionally, arginine activates the mechanistic (mammalian) target of rapamycin cell signaling pathway to stimulate protein synthesis in the placenta, uterus, and fetus. Thus, dietary supplementation with 0.83 % L-arginine to gilts consuming 2 kg of a typical gestation diet between either days 14 and 28 or between days 30 and 114 of pregnancy increases the number of live-born piglets and litter birth weight. Similar results have been reported for gestating rats and ewes. In sheep, arginine also stimulates development of fetal brown adipose tissue. Furthermore, oral administration of arginine to women with IUGR has been reported to enhance fetal growth. Collectively, enhancement of uterine as well as placental growth and function through dietary arginine supplementation provides an effective solution to improving embryonic and fetal survival and growth.

  1. Regional development of Langerhans cells and formation of Birbeck granules in human embryonic and fetal skin.

    PubMed

    Fujita, M; Furukawa, F; Horiguchi, Y; Ueda, M; Kashihara-Sawami, M; Imamura, S

    1991-07-01

    The regional development of Langerhans cells (LC) and the formation of Birbeck granules (BG) were examined in human embryonic and fetal skin. Samples were obtained from multiple anatomic sites and stained with anti-CD36, anti-CD1a, and anti-HLA-DR antibody as well as Lag antibody specifically reactive to BG and some vacuoles of human LC. In the first trimester, CD36+ dendritic epidermal cells were identified before the appearance of CD1a+ cells and Lag+ cells. Some of the former co-expressed HLA-DR antigens but not CD1a antigens. In the second trimester, regional variations in LC development were observed. Epidermal LC of palms and soles reached a peak in number in the first trimester but were rarely detected after 18 weeks estimated gestation age (EGA), whereas, in other regions, their number increased with age. In the second trimester, CD1a+ cells and Lag+ cells were also identified in the epidermis, although Lag+ cells appeared later than CD1a+ cells. The Lag+ cells until 17 weeks EGA showed a variety of staining intensities and immunoelectron microscopy revealed that they contained various amounts of Lag-reactive BG. Flow cytometric analysis showed that relative amounts of Lag antigens in LC increased during the second trimester and that fetal LC of 18 weeks EGA expressed the same amounts of HLA-DR, CD1a, and Lag antigens as did adult human LC. In the dermis, in the second trimester, numerous CD36+ cells and HLA-DR+ cells were found, whereas CD1a+ cells and Lag+ cells were rarely detected. Taken together, it is suggested that HLA-DR+ dendritic cells acquire CD1a+ antigens first and then form BG after migration to the epidermis and that fetal LC are phenotypically mature in the second trimester.

  2. Retardation of fetal dendritic development induced by gestational hyperglycemia is associated with brain insulin/IGF-I signals.

    PubMed

    Jing, Yu-Hong; Song, Yan-Feng; Yao, Ya-Ming; Yin, Jie; Wang, De-Gui; Gao, Li-Ping

    2014-10-01

    Hyperglycemia is an essential risk factor for mothers and fetuses in gestational diabetes. Clinical observation has indicated that the offspring of mothers with diabetes shows impaired somatosensory function and IQ. However, only a few studies have explored the effects of hyperglycemia on fetal brain development. Neurodevelopment is susceptible to environmental conditions. Thus, this study aims to investigate the effects of maternal hyperglycemia on fetal brain development and to evaluate insulin and insulin-like growth factor-I (IGF-I) signals in fetal brain under hyperglycemia or controlled hyperglycemia. At day 1 of pregnancy, gestational rats were intraperitoneally injected with streptozocin (60 mg/kg). Some of the hyperglycemic gestational rats were injected with insulin (20 IU, two times a day) to control hyperglycemia; the others were injected with saline of equal volume. The gestational rats were sacrificed at days 14, 16, and 18 of embryo development. The dendritic spines of subplate cortex neurons in the fetal brain were detected by Golgi-Cox staining. The mRNA levels of insulin receptors (IRs) and IGF-IR in the fetal brain were measured using qRT-PCR. The protein levels of synaptophysin, IR, and IGF-IR in the fetal brain were detected by western blot. No significant difference in fetal brain formation was observed between the maternal hyperglycemic group and insulin-treated group. By contrast, obvious retardation of dendritic development in the fetus was observed in the maternal hyperglycemic group. Similarly, synaptophysin expression was lower in the fetus of the maternal hyperglycemic group than in that of the insulin-treated group. The mRNA and protein expression levels of IRs in the fetal brain were higher in the hyperglycemic group than in the insulin-treated group. By contrast, the levels of IGF-IR in the brain were lower in the fetus of the maternal hyperglycemic group than in that of the insulin-treated group. These results suggested that

  3. PRENATAL NICOTINE EXPOSURE SELECTIVELY AFFECTS NICOTINIC RECEPTOR EXPRESSION IN PRIMARY AND ASSOCIATIVE VISUAL CORTICES OF THE FETAL BABOON

    PubMed Central

    Duncan, Jhodie R.; Garland, Marianne; Stark, Raymond I.; Myers, Michael M.; Fifer, William P.; Mokler, David J.; Kinney, Hannah C.

    2014-01-01

    Exposure to nicotine during pregnancy via maternal cigarette smoking is associated with visual deficits in children. This is possibly due to activation of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) in the occipital cortex which are important in the development of visual mapping. Using a baboon model we explored the effects of prenatal nicotine on parameters in the primary and associated visual cortices. Pregnant baboons were infused with nicotine (0.5 mg/hr, i.v.) or saline from 86 days gestation. At 161 days gestation fetal brains were collected (n=5/group) and the occipital lobe assessed for nAChRs and markers of the serotonergic and catecholaminergic systems using tissue autoradiography and/or high performance liquid chromatography. Neuronal nAChRs and serotonergic markers were expressed in a region and subunit dependent manner. Prenatal nicotine exposure was associated with increased binding for 3H-epibatidine sensitive nAChRs in the primary visual cortex (BA 17) and BA 18, but not BA 19, of the associative visual cortex (p<0.05). Markers of the serotonergic or catecholaminergic systems were not significantly altered. Thus, prenatal nicotine exposure is associated with alterations in the cholinergic system in the occipital lobe which may aid in the explanation of the appearance of visual deficits in children from mothers who smoke during pregnancy. PMID:24903536

  4. Prenatal nicotine exposure selectively affects nicotinic receptor expression in primary and associative visual cortices of the fetal baboon.

    PubMed

    Duncan, Jhodie R; Garland, Marianne; Stark, Raymond I; Myers, Michael M; Fifer, William P; Mokler, David J; Kinney, Hannah C

    2015-03-01

    Exposure to nicotine during pregnancy via maternal cigarette smoking is associated with visual deficits in children. This is possibly due to the activation of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) in the occipital cortex, which are important in the development of visual mapping. Using a baboon model, we explored the effects of prenatal nicotine on parameters in the primary and associated visual cortices. Pregnant baboons were infused with nicotine (0.5 mg/h, intravenous) or saline from 86 days gestation. At 161 days gestation, fetal brains were collected (n = 5 per group) and the occipital lobe assessed for nAChRs and markers of the serotonergic and catecholaminergic systems using tissue autoradiography and/or high-performance liquid chromatography. Neuronal nAChRs and serotonergic markers were expressed in a region- and subunit-dependent manner. Prenatal nicotine exposure was associated with increased binding for (3) H-epibatidine sensitive nAChRs in the primary visual cortex [Brodmann areas (BA) 17] and BA 18, but not BA 19, of the associative visual cortex (P < 0.05). Markers of the serotonergic or catecholaminergic systems were not significantly altered. Thus, prenatal nicotine exposure is associated with alterations in the cholinergic system in the occipital lobe, which may aid in the explanation of the appearance of visual deficits in children from mothers who smoke during pregnancy.

  5. Region-Specific Growth Effects in the Developing Rat Prostate Following Fetal Exposure to Estrogenic Ultraviolet Filters

    PubMed Central

    Hofkamp, Luke; Bradley, Sarahann; Tresguerres, Jesus; Lichtensteiger, Walter; Schlumpf, Margret; Timms, Barry

    2008-01-01

    Background and objectives Exposure to environmental endocrine disruptors is a potential risk factor for humans. Many of these chemicals have been shown to exhibit disruption of normal cellular and developmental processes in animal models. Ultraviolet (UV) filters used as sunscreens in cosmetics have previously been shown to exhibit estrogenic activity in in vitro and in vivo assays. We examined the effects of two UV filters, 4-methylbenzylidene camphor (4-MBC) and 3-benzylidene camphor (3-BC), in the developing prostate of the fetal rat. Methods Pregnant Long Evans rats were fed diets containing doses of 4-MBC and 3-BC that resulted in average daily intakes of these chemicals corresponding to the lowest observed adverse effects level (LOAEL) and the no observed adverse effects level (NOAEL) doses in prior developmental toxicity studies. Using digital photographs of serial sections from postnatal day 1 animals, we identified, contoured, and aligned the epithelial ducts from specific regions of the developing prostate, plus the accessory sex glands and calculated the total volume for each region from three-dimensional, surface-rendered models. Results Fetal exposure to 4-MBC (7.0 mg/kg body weight/day) resulted in a significant increase (p < 0.05) in tissue volume in the prostate and accessory sex glands. Treated males exhibited a 62% increase in the number of ducts in the caudal dorsal prostate. Increased distal branching morphogenesis appears to be a consequence of exposure in the ventral region, resulting in a 106% increase in ductal volume. Conclusions 4-MBC exposure during development of the male reproductive accessory sex glands exhibited classical growth effects associated with estrogenic endocrine disruptors. The different regional responses suggest that the two developmental processes of ductal outgrowth and branching morphogenesis are affected independently by exposure to the environmental chemicals. PMID:18629307

  6. Fetal nutrition and adult disease.

    PubMed

    Godfrey, K M; Barker, D J

    2000-05-01

    Recent research suggests that several of the major diseases of later life, including coronary heart disease, hypertension, and type 2 diabetes, originate in impaired intrauterine growth and development. These diseases may be consequences of "programming," whereby a stimulus or insult at a critical, sensitive period of early life has permanent effects on structure, physiology, and metabolism. Evidence that coronary heart disease, hypertension, and diabetes are programmed came from longitudinal studies of 25,000 UK men and women in which size at birth was related to the occurrence of the disease in middle age. People who were small or disproportionate (thin or short) at birth had high rates of coronary heart disease, high blood pressure, high cholesterol concentrations, and abnormal glucose-insulin metabolism. These relations were independent of the length of gestation, suggesting that cardiovascular disease is linked to fetal growth restriction rather than to premature birth. Replication of the UK findings has led to wide acceptance that low rates of fetal growth are associated with cardiovascular disease in later life. Impaired growth and development in utero seem to be widespread in the population, affecting many babies whose birth weights are within the normal range. Although the influences that impair fetal development and program adult cardiovascular disease remain to be defined, there are strong pointers to the importance of the fetal adaptations invoked when the maternoplacental nutrient supply fails to match the fetal nutrient demand.

  7. Differential response of the epithelium and interstitium in developing human fetal lung explants to hyperoxia.

    PubMed

    Bustani, Porus; Hodge, Rachel; Tellabati, Ananth; Li, Juan; Pandya, Hitesh; Kotecha, Sailesh

    2006-03-01

    Hyperoxia is closely linked with the development of chronic lung disease of prematurity (CLD), but the exact mechanisms whereby hyperoxia alters the lung architecture in the developing lung remain largely unknown. We developed a fetal human lung organ culture model to investigate (a) the morphologic changes induced by hyperoxia and (b) whether hyperoxia resulted in differential cellular responses in the epithelium and interstitium. The effects of hyperoxia on lung morphometry were analyzed using computer-assisted image analysis. The lung architecture remained largely unchanged in normoxia lasting as long as 4 d. In contrast, hyperoxic culture of pseudoglandular fetal lungs resulted in significant dilatation of airways, thinning of the epithelium, and regression of the interstitium including the pulmonary vasculature. Although there were no significant differences in Ki67 between normoxic and hyperoxic lungs, activated caspase-3 was significantly increased in interstitial cells, but not epithelial cells, under hyperoxic conditions. These changes show that exposure of pseudoglandular lungs to hyperoxia modulates the lung architecture to resemble saccular lungs.

  8. Pleiotrophin regulates lung epithelial cell proliferation and differentiation during fetal lung development via beta-catenin and Dlk1.

    PubMed

    Weng, Tingting; Gao, Li; Bhaskaran, Manoj; Guo, Yujie; Gou, Deming; Narayanaperumal, Jeyaparthasarathy; Chintagari, Narendranath Reddy; Zhang, Kexiong; Liu, Lin

    2009-10-09

    The role of pleiotrophin in fetal lung development was investigated. We found that pleiotrophin and its receptor, protein-tyrosine phosphatase receptor beta/zeta, were highly expressed in mesenchymal and epithelial cells of the fetal lungs, respectively. Using isolated fetal alveolar epithelial type II cells, we demonstrated that pleiotrophin promoted fetal type II cell proliferation and arrested type II cell trans-differentiation into alveolar epithelial type I cells. Pleiotrophin also increased wound healing of injured type II cell monolayer. Knockdown of pleiotrophin influenced lung branching morphogenesis in a fetal lung organ culture model. Pleiotrophin increased the tyrosine phosphorylation of beta-catenin, promoted beta-catenin translocation into the nucleus, and activated T cell factor/lymphoid enhancer factor transcription factors. Dlk1, a membrane ligand that initiates the Notch signaling pathway, was identified as a downstream target of the pleiotrophin/beta-catenin pathway by endogenous dlk1 expression, promoter assay, and chromatin immunoprecipitation. These results provide evidence that pleiotrophin regulates fetal type II cell proliferation and differentiation via integration of multiple signaling pathways including pleiotrophin, beta-catenin, and Notch pathways.

  9. Transplacental stimulation of lung development in the fetal rabbit by 3,5-dimethyl-3'-isopropyl-L-thyronine.

    PubMed Central

    Ballard, P L; Benson, B J; Brehier, A; Carter, J P; Kriz, B M; Jorgensen, E C

    1980-01-01

    The effect of thyroid hormone on maturation of fetal rabbit lung was studied with maternal treatment using 3,5-dimethyl-3'-isopropyl-L-thyronine (DIMIT), a synthetic analogue of triiodothyronine. To investigate the in vivo kinetics and distribution of DIMIT, we prepared [3H]DIMIT and injected both pregnant rats (18-21 d gestation) and rabbits (25 d gestation). In the rat, maximal concentrations of radioactivity in maternal plasma, fetal plasma, and amniotic fluid occurred within 10 min, 1-2 h, and 4-6 h, respectively, after intramuscular injection. After 7 h the concentration of radioactivity in fetal plasma was 163 and 71% of the maternal level in rats and rabbits, respectively, indicating that DIMIT readily crosses the placenta. We treated pregnant rabbits for 1-2 d with DIMIT in doses of 0.5-3 mg/kg per d and examined the fetuses at 26 and 27 d gestation. Treatment did not affect fetal growth or viability. In fetal liver, DIMIT increased the activity of NADPH cytochromeac reductase by 64% and decreased the glycogen content by 73% compared to controls. The rate of choline incorporation by lung minces increased in dose-dependent manner to a maximum of +104% at 3 mg/kg DIMIT; this does stimulated by 38% the activity of lung phosphatidic acid phosphatase (PAPase), a corticosteroid-responsive enzyme, but there was no increase in tissue PAPase activity at most lower doses of DIMIT that enhanced choline incorporation. Treated lungs had 38% less glycogen tha controls, but there was no effect on tissue levels of DNA, protein, or phospholipid. DIMIT treatment increased the amount of total phospholipid (+163%). saturated phosphatidylcholine (+330%), and PAPase activity (+134%) in lung lavage fluid. The DIMIT effects on both choline incorporation by lung minces and phospholipid content of lavage fluid were substantially greater than what had occurred with an optimal dose of betamethasone. DIMIT also increased corticosteroid binding capacity in fetal plasma and produced a

  10. Incubation Temperature during Fetal Development Influences Morphophysiological Characteristics and Preferred Ambient Temperature of Chicken Hatchlings

    PubMed Central

    Morita, Viviane de Souza; de Almeida, Vitor Rosa; Matos, João Batista; Vicentini, Tamiris Iara; van den Brand, Henry; Boleli, Isabel Cristina

    2016-01-01

    Skin and feather characteristics, which play a critical role in body temperature maintenance, can be affected by incubation circumstances, such as incubation temperature. However, no study to date has assessed the influence of incubation temperature during the fetal stage on morphometric characteristics and vascular development of the skin, feather characteristics, and their relationship to hormone levels and preferred temperature in later life in chickens. Broiler breeder eggs were exposed to low (36°C), control (37.5°C), or high (39°C) temperatures (treatments LT, CK, and HT, respectively) from day 13 of incubation onward, because it is known that the endocrine axes are already established at this time. During this period, eggshell temperature of HT eggs (38.8±0.33°C) was higher than of LT (37.4±0.08°C) and CK eggs (37.8 ±0.15°C). The difference between eggshell and incubator air temperature diminished with the increasing incubation temperature, and was approximately zero for HT. HT hatchlings had higher surface temperature on the head, neck, and back, and thinner and more vascularized skin than did CK and LT hatchlings. No differences were found among treatments for body weight, total feather weight, number and length of barbs, barbule length, and plasma T4 concentration. LT hatchlings showed lower plasma T3 and GH, as well as lower T3/T4 ratio and decreased vascularity in the neck, back, and thigh skin compared to CK hatchlings. On the other hand, HT hatchlings had decreased skin thickness and increased vascularity, and preferred a higher ambient temperature compared to CK and HT hatchlings. In addition, for all treatments, surface temperature on the head was higher than of the other body regions. We conclude that changes in skin thickness and vascularity, as well as changes in thyroid and growth hormone levels, are the result of embryonic strategies to cope with higher or lower than normal incubation temperatures. Additionally exposure to increased

  11. Effects of Love Canal soil extracts on maternal health and fetal development in rats

    SciTech Connect

    Silkworth, J.B.; Tumasonis, C.; Briggs, R.G.; Narang, A.S.; Narang, R.S.; Rej, R.; Stein, V.; McMartin, D.N.; Kaminsky, L.S.

    1986-10-01

    The effects of a solvent extract of the surface soil of the Love Canal chemical dump site, Niagara Falls, New York, and of a natural extract, or leachate, which is drained from the canal for treatment, on the maternal health and fetal development were determined in rats. The solvent extract, which was contaminated with 2,3,7,8-tetrachlorodibenzo-p-dioxin (2, 3,7,8-TCDD) at 170 ppb and numerous other chlorinated organic compounds with the primary identified components being the isomers of benzenehexachloride (BHC), was dissolved in corn oil and administered by gavage to pregnant rats at 0,25,75, or 150 mg crude extract/kg/day on Days 6-15 of gestation. A 67% mortality was observed at the highest dose. The rats were sacrificed on Day 20. Dose-related increases in relative liver weight accompanied by hepatocyte hypertrophy were observed at all dose levels. Fetal birthweight was decreased at 75 and 150 mg extract/kg/day. No major treatment-related soft tissue or skeletal malformations, except for delayed ossification, were observed. Based on literature values for BHC, all of the observed toxicity could be accounted for by the BHC contaminants of the extract. The crude organic phase of the leachate was administered to pregnant rats at 0,10,100, or 250 mg/kg/day as described above. Maternal weight gain decreased at 100 and 250 mg/kg/day, accompanied by 5 and 14% maternal mortality, and 1 and 3 dead fetuses, respectively. Early resorptions and the percentage of dead implants increased whereas fetal birthweights were decreased at 250 mg/kg/day. No major treatment-related soft tissue or skeletal malformations, except for delayed ossification, were observed. The primary components of the complex leachate by mass were tetrachloroethanes; however, 2,3,7,8-TCDD, which was present at 3 ppm, probably accounted for all the observed toxicity.

  12. The effects of Love Canal soil extracts on maternal health and fetal development in rats.

    PubMed

    Silkworth, J B; Tumasonis, C; Briggs, R G; Narang, A S; Narang, R S; Rej, R; Stein, V; McMartin, D N; Kaminsky, L S

    1986-10-01

    The effects of a solvent extract of the surface soil of the Love Canal chemical dump site, Niagara Falls, New York, and of a natural extract, or leachate, which is drained from the canal for treatment, on the maternal health and fetal development were determined in rats. The solvent extract, which was contaminated with 2,3,7,8-tetrachlorodibenzo-p-dioxin (2, 3,7,8-TCDD) at 170 ppb and numerous other chlorinated organic compounds with the primary identified components being the isomers of benzenehexachloride (BHC), was dissolved in corn oil and administered by gavage to pregnant rats at 0,25,75, or 150 mg crude extract/kg/day on Days 6-15 of gestation. A 67% mortality was observed at the highest dose. The rats were sacrificed on Day 20. Dose-related increases in relative liver weight accompanied by hepatocyte hypertrophy were observed at all dose levels. Fetal birthweight was decreased at 75 and 150 mg extract/kg/day. No major treatment-related soft tissue or skeletal malformations, except for delayed ossification, were observed. Based on literature values for BHC, all of the observed toxicity could be accounted for by the BHC contaminants of the extract. The crude organic phase of the leachate was administered to pregnant rats at 0,10,100, or 250 mg/kg/day as described above. Maternal weight gain decreased at 100 and 250 mg/kg/day, accompanied by 5 and 14% maternal mortality, and 1 and 3 dead fetuses, respectively. Early resorptions and the percentage of dead implants increased whereas fetal birthweights were decreased at 250 mg/kg/day. No major treatment-related soft tissue or skeletal malformations, except for delayed ossification, were observed. The primary components of the complex leachate by mass were tetrachloroethanes; however, 2,3,7,8-TCDD, which was present at 3 ppm, probably accounted for all the observed toxicity.

  13. Glucosamine supplementation affects placental development in swine

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Previous studies indicated that the depth of the folds of the endometrial epithelial-fetal trophoblast bilayer of the pig placenta is increased in the placenta of small fetuses during late gestation, and that hyaluronan metabolism plays a role in the process. Given this, we hypothesized that glucosa...

  14. Study of the development of uteroplacental and fetal feline circulation by triplex Doppler.

    PubMed

    Pereira, Barbara Sucupira; Pinto, José Nicodemos; Freire, Luma Morena Passos; Campello, Cláudio Cabral; Domingues, Sheyla Farhayldes Souza; da Silva, Lucia Daniel Machado

    2012-03-15

    The objective was to evaluate blood flow in fetal and maternal vessels by Triplex Doppler and its association with development of blood vessels during gestation in the domestic cat. Ten queens were examined weekly from 14 to 63 d after mating. Peak systolic velocity (PSV), end diastolic velocity (EDV), resistance index (RI) and pulsatility index (PI) of uteroplacental, aorta and umbilical fetal arteries and caudal vena cava of the fetus were evaluated. Throughout pregnancy, there was an increase in PSV and EDV in the aorta and umbilical arteries. In the caudal vena cava, there was an increase in PSV, whereas the EDV was constant, with a significant increase on Day 63. Peak systolic velocity and EDV of the uteroplacental artery reduced significantly on Day 63. Resistance index of the umbilical artery progressively decreased. In the aorta, this reduction was detected only on Day 42, with no defined pattern in the caudal vena cava and uteroplacental artery. Pulsatility index of the aorta varied. Although pulsatility increased in the caudal vena cava on Day 35 and remained elevated, pulsatility was significantly reduced in the umbilical artery by Day 63. The pulsatility index of the uteroplacental artery was constant (increased only on Day 63). Triplex Doppler evaluation could be a useful adjunct for prenatal care of pregnant queens, including assessment of vascular gestational development and prediction of gestational age.

  15. The morphometric development and clinical importance of the hyoid bone during the fetal period.

    PubMed

    Kadir, Desdicioglu; Osman, Sulak; Mehmet Ali, Malas

    2015-01-01

    It was aimed that the morphometric development of the hyoid bone throughout the fetal period be anatomically researched and its clinical importance be evaluated. A total of 90 human fetuses (44 male, 46 female) whose ages varied between 18 and 40 gestational weeks and without an external pathology or anomaly were involved in the study. The fetuses were divided into groups according to gestational weeks and trimesters. In the wake of making the general external measurements of fetuses, the neck dissection was performed. Following the localization of the hyoid bone, the morphometric parameters pertaining to the hyoid bone were measured. The averages of the measured parameters according to the gestational weeks, trimesters and months, and their standard deviations were determined. There was a significant correlation between the measured parameters and the gestational age (p < 0.001). Between the genders, there was no difference among the other parameters, except for those regarding the distance between the hyoid bone and columna vertebralis, the hyoid bone corpus length, the hyoid bone right cornu majus initial width, the hyoid bone left cornu majus initial width, and the upper distance between the hyoid bone cornu majus (es) (p > 0.001). We are of the opinion that the data obtained during our study will be of use to forensic physicians and the involved clinicians in the evaluation of the development of the hyoid bone area during the fetal period, and in clinical studies and practices.

  16. Distinct Genetic Networks Orchestrate the Emergence of Specific Waves of Fetal and Adult B-1 and B-2 Development.

    PubMed

    Montecino-Rodriguez, Encarnacion; Fice, Michael; Casero, David; Berent-Maoz, Beata; Barber, Chad L; Dorshkind, Kenneth

    2016-09-20

    B cell development is often depicted as a linear process initiating in the fetus and continuing postnatally. Using a PU.1 hypomorphic mouse model, we found that B-1 and B-2 lymphopoiesis occurred in distinct fetal and adult waves differentially dependent on the Sfpi1 14 kB upstream regulatory element. The initial wave of fetal B-1 development was absent in PU.1 hypomorphic mice, while subsequent fetal and adult waves emerged. In contrast, B-2 lymphopoiesis occurred in distinct fetal and adult waves. Whole-transcriptome profiling of fetal and adult B cell progenitors supported the existence of three waves of B-1 and two waves of B-2 development and revealed that the network of transcription factors governing B lineage specification and commitment was highly divergent between B-1 and B-2 progenitors. These findings support the view that the B-1 and B-2 lineages are distinct and provide a genetic basis for layering of immune system development.

  17. Implantable Ultralow Pulmonary Pressure Monitoring System for Fetal Surgery

    PubMed Central

    Etemadi, Mozziyar; Heller, J. Alex; Schecter, Samuel C.; Shue, Eveline H.; Miniati, Doug; Roy, Shuvo

    2015-01-01

    Congenital pulmonary hypoplasia is a devastating condition affecting fetal and newborn pulmonary physiology, resulting in great morbidity and mortality. The fetal lung develops in a fluid-filled environment. In this paper, we describe a novel, implantable pressure sensing and recording device which we use to study the pressures present in the fetal pulmonary tree throughout gestation. The system achieves 0.18 cm H2O resolution and can record for 21 days continuously at 256 Hz. Sample tracings of in vivo fetal lamb recordings are shown. PMID:22801521

  18. Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Caley, Linda M.; Kramer, Charlotte; Robinson, Luther K.

    2005-01-01

    Fetal alcohol spectrum disorder (FASD) is a serious and widespread problem in this country. Positioned within the community with links to children, families, and healthcare systems, school nurses are a critical element in the prevention and treatment of those affected by fetal alcohol spectrum disorder. Although most school nurses are familiar…

  19. Fetal lung development in the elephant reflects the adaptations required for snorkeling in adult life.

    PubMed

    West, John B; Fu, Zhenxing; Gaeth, Ann P; Short, Roger V

    2003-11-14

    The adult elephant is unique among mammals in that the pleural membranes are thickened and the pleural cavity is obliterated by connective tissue. It has been suggested that this peculiar anatomy developed because the animal can snorkel at depth, and this behavior subjects the microvessels in the parietal pleura to a very large transmural pressure. To investigate the development of the parietal pleura, the thickness of the endothoracic fascia (ET) was measured in four fetal African elephants of approximate gestational age 111-130 days, and the appearances were compared with those in human, rabbit, rat and mouse fetuses of approximately the same stage of lung organogenesis. The mean thicknesses of ET in the elephant, human, rabbit, rat and mouse were 403, 53, 29, 27 and 37 microm, respectively. This very early development of a thick parietal pleura in the elephant fetus is consistent with the hypothesis of a long history of snorkeling in the elephant's putative aquatic ancestors.

  20. Choline: Critical Role During Fetal Development and Dietary Requirements in Adults

    PubMed Central

    Zeisel, Steven H.

    2008-01-01

    Choline is an essential nutrient needed for the structural integrity and signaling functions of cell membranes; for normal cholinergic neurotransmission; for normal muscle function; for lipid transport from liver; and it is the major source of methyl groups in the diet. Choline is critical during fetal development, when it influences stem cell proliferation and apoptosis, thereby altering brain and spinal cord structure and function and influencing risk for neural tube defects and lifelong memory function. Choline is derived not only from the diet, but from de novo synthesis as well. Though many foods contain choline, there is at least a twofold variation in dietary intake in humans. When deprived of dietary choline, most men and postmenopausal women developed signs of organ dysfunction (fatty liver or muscle damage), while less than half of premenopausal women developed such signs. Aside from gender differences, there is significant variation in the dietary requirement for choline that can be explained by very common genetic polymorphisms. PMID:16848706

  1. Animal Models for Medication Development and Application to Treat Fetal Alcohol Effects.

    PubMed

    Barron, S; Hawkey, A; Fields, L; Littleton, J M

    2016-01-01

    Ethanol consumption during pregnancy can have lifelong consequences for the offspring, their family and society. Fetal alcohol spectrum disorders (FASD) include a range of physical and behavioral effects with the most significant impact occurring as a result of the effects of ethanol on the developing central nervous system (CNS). To date, there are no FDA approved drugs that have been tested that prevent/reduce or specifically treat the symptoms of FASD. There are several promising lines of research from rodent models aimed at reducing the neurotoxic effects of ethanol on the developing CNS or in treating the resulting behavioral impairments but these have not yet moved to clinical testing. The current review discusses some of the most promising targets for intervention and provides a review of the past and ongoing efforts to develop and screen pharmacological treatments for reducing the effects of prenatal ethanol exposure.

  2. Human fetal liver stromal cells expressing erythropoietin promote hematopoietic development from human embryonic stem cells.

    PubMed

    Yang, Chao; Ji, Lei; Yue, Wen; Shi, Shuang-Shuang; Wang, Ruo-Yong; Li, Yan-Hua; Xie, Xiao-Yan; Xi, Jia-Fei; He, Li-Juan; Nan, Xue; Pei, Xue-Tao

    2012-02-01

    Blood cells transfusion and hematopoietic stem cells (HSCs) transplantation are important methods for cell therapy. They are widely used in the treatment of incurable hematological disorder, infectious diseases, genetic diseases, and immunologic deficiency. However, their availability is limited by quantity, capacity of proliferation and the risk of blood transfusion complications. Recently, human embryonic stem cells (hESCs) have been shown to be an alternative resource for the generation of hematopoietic cells. In the current study, we describe a novel method for the efficient production of hematopoietic cells from hESCs. The stable human fetal liver stromal cell lines (hFLSCs) expressing erythropoietin (EPO) were established using the lentiviral system. We observed that the supernatant from the EPO transfected hFLSCs could induce the hESCs differentiation into hematopoietic cells, especially erythroid cells. They not only expressed fetal and embryonic globins but also expressed the adult-globin chain on further maturation. In addition, these hESCs-derived erythroid cells possess oxygen-transporting capacity, which indicated hESCs could generate terminally mature progenies. This should be useful for ultimately developing an animal-free culture system to generate large numbers of erythroid cells from hESCs and provide an experimental model to study early human erythropoiesis.

  3. Fetal alcohol exposure alters neurosteroid levels in the developing rat brain.

    PubMed

    Caldeira, Jerri C; Wu, Yan; Mameli, Manuel; Purdy, Robert H; Li, Pui-Kai; Akwa, Yvette; Savage, Daniel D; Engen, John R; Valenzuela, C Fernando

    2004-09-01

    Neurosteroids are modulators of neuronal function that may play important roles in brain maturation. We determined whether chronic prenatal ethanol exposure altered neurosteroid levels in the developing brain. Rat dams were exposed to: (i) a 5% ethanol-containing liquid diet that produces peak maternal blood alcohol levels near the legal intoxication limit (approximately 0.08 g/dL); (ii) an isocaloric liquid diet containing maltose-dextrin instead of ethanol with pair-feeding; (iii) rat chow ad libitum. Neurosteroid levels were assessed in offspring brains using radioimmunoassay or gas chromatography-mass spectrometry techniques. A prenatal ethanol exposure-induced increase in pregnenolone sulfate levels, but not dehydroepiandrosterone sulfate levels, was evident at the earliest time point studied (embryonic day 14). This effect lasted until post-natal day 5. Levels of other neurosteroids were assessed at embryonic day 20; pregnenolone levels, but not allopregnanolone levels, were elevated. Pregnenolone sulfate levels were not altered in the maternal brain. Neither pregnenolone nor pregnenolone sulfate levels were significantly altered in the fetal liver, placenta and maternal blood, indicating that the effect of ethanol is not secondary to accumulation of peripherally-produced steroids. Fetal ethanol exposure has been shown to decrease both cellular and behavioral responsiveness to neurosteroids, and our findings provide a plausible explanation for this effect.

  4. Investigation of the effects of acrylamide applied during pregnancy on fetal brain development in rats and protective role of the vitamin E.

    PubMed

    Erdemli, M E; Turkoz, Y; Altinoz, E; Elibol, E; Dogan, Z

    2016-12-01

    A liberal amount of acrylamide (AA) is produced as a result of frying or baking foods in high temperatures, and individuals take certain amounts of AA everyday by consuming these food items. Pregnant women are also exposed to AA originating from food during pregnancy and their fetus are probably affected. The rats were divided into five different groups: control (C), corn oil (CO), vitamin E (Vit E), AA, and Vit E + AA, with eight pregnant rats in each group. On the 20th day of pregnancy, fetuses were removed and brain tissues of fetuses were examined for biochemical and histological changes. AA caused degeneration in neuron structures in fetal brain tissue and caused hemorrhagic damages; dramatically decreased brain-derived neurotrophic factor levels; increased malondialdehyde, total oxidant capacity levels; and decreased reduced glutathione and total antioxidant capacity levels (p < 0.05). On the other hand, it was determined that the Vit E, a neuroprotectant and a powerful antioxidant, suppressed the effects of AA on fetal development and fetal brain tissue damage for the above-mentioned parameters (p < 0.05). It is recommended to consume food containing Vit E as a protection to minimize the toxic effects of food-oriented AA on fetus development due to the widespread nature of fast-food culture in today's life and the impossibility of protection from AA toxicity.

  5. Effects of ochratoxin a on mouse oocyte maturation and fertilization, and apoptosis during fetal development.

    PubMed

    Huang, Fu-Jen; Chan, Wen-Hsiung

    2016-06-01

    We previously reported that ochratoxin A (OTA), a mycotoxin found in many foods worldwide, causes nephrotoxicity, hepatotoxicity, and immunotoxicity, and is a risk factor for abnormal embryonic development. More specifically, OTA triggers apoptotic processes in the inner cell mass of mouse blastocysts, decreasing cell viability and embryonic development. In the current study, we investigated the deleterious effects of OTA on mouse oocyte maturation, in vitro fertilization (IVF), and subsequent pre- and postimplantation development both in vitro and in vivo. Notably, OTA significantly impaired mouse oocyte maturation, decreased IVF rates, and inhibited subsequent embryonic development in vitro. Preincubation of oocytes with OTA during in vitro maturation increased postimplantation embryonic resorption and decreased mouse fetal weight. In an in vivo animal model, provision of 1-10 μM OTA in the drinking water or intravenous injection of 1 or 2 mg/kg body weight of OTA decreased oocyte maturation and IVF, and had deleterious effects on early embryonic development. Importantly, preincubation of oocytes with a caspase-3-specific inhibitor effectively blocked these OTA-triggered deleterious effects, suggesting that the embryonic injury induced by OTA is mediated via a caspase-dependent apoptotic mechanism. Furthermore, OTA upregulated the levels of p53 and p21 in blastocyst cells derived from OTA-pretreated oocytes, indicating that such cells undergo apoptosis via p53-, p21-, and caspase-3-dependent regulatory mechanisms. This could have deleterious effects on embryonic implantation and fetal survival rates, as seen in our animal models. © 2014 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. Environ Toxicol 31: 724-735, 2016.

  6. Periconceptional growth hormone treatment alters fetal growth and development in lambs.

    PubMed

    Koch, J M; Wilmoth, T A; Wilson, M E

    2010-05-01

    Research in the area of fetal programming has focused on intrauterine growth restriction. Few studies have attempted to examine programming mechanisms that ultimately lead to lambs with a greater potential for postnatal growth. We previously demonstrated that treatment of ewes with GH at the time of breeding led to an increase in birth weight. Therefore, the objective of this study was to determine the effects of a single injection of sustained-release GH given during the periconceptional period on fetal growth and development and to determine if the GH axis would be altered in these offspring. Estrus was synchronized using 2 injections of PGF(2alpha); at the time of the second injection, ewes assigned to treatment were also given an injection of sustained-release GH. A maternal jugular vein sample was taken weekly to analyze IGF-I as a proxy for GH to estimate the duration of the treatment effect. In ewes treated with GH, IGF-I increased (P < 0.05) by wk 1 and remained elevated until wk 4 postinjection. Lambs were weighed, crown-rump length and abdominal girth were determined, and a plasma sample was collected. In a subset of male lambs, liver, heart, and brain weights were obtained, as well as left and right ventricular wall thicknesses. On postnatal d 100, a subset of ewe lambs were weighed and challenged with an intravenous injection of GHRH. Lambs from treated ewes had increased (P < 0.05) birth weight and abdominal girth compared with control lambs; however, there was no difference in crown-rump length. Expression of GH receptor and IGF-I were increased (P < 0.05) in lambs gestated by GH-treated ewes compared with control ewes. The left ventricular wall was thinner (P < 0.05) from lambs in the GH-treated group compared with control lambs. On postnatal d 100, those ewe lambs born to ewes treated with GH continued to be heavier (P < 0.05) and had no IGF-I response to GHRH challenge. In conclusion, treating ewes with a single injection of GH appeared to alter

  7. Toxic effects of maternal zearalenone exposure on uterine capacity and fetal development in gestation rats.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Yuanyuan; Jia, Zhiqiang; Yin, Shutong; Shan, Anshan; Gao, Rui; Qu, Zhe; Liu, Min; Nie, Shaoping

    2014-06-01

    The objectives of this study were to determine the effects of high-dose and early gestational exposure to zearalenone (ZEN) in female Sprague-Dawley (SD) rats, to correlate the maternal uterus with the fetus, and to explore the development and malformation of fetuses. Pregnant female SD rats were fed diets containing 0.3, 48.5, 97.6, or 146.0 mg/kg ZEN on gestational days (GDs) 0 through 7. All the females survived until GD 20, at which point a cesarean section was performed to harvest the organs, blood, and fetuses. The results indicated that exposure to ZEN during early gestation can impact the maternal reproductive capability. Delayed fetal development was directly linked to maternal toxicity. The toxic effects of ZEN caused early deaths more frequently than late deaths, and the deleterious effects lasted through the end of pregnancy.

  8. Pdgfr-α mediates testis cord organization and fetal Leydig cell development in the XY gonad

    PubMed Central

    Brennan, Jennifer; Tilmann, Christopher; Capel, Blanche

    2003-01-01

    During testis development, the rapid morphological changes initiated by Sry require the coordinate integration of many signaling pathways. Based on the established role of the platelet-derived growth factor (PDGF) family of ligands and receptors in migration, proliferation, and differentiation of cells in various organ systems, we have investigated the role of PDGF in testis organogenesis. Analysis of expression patterns and characterization of the gonad phenotype in Pdgfr-α−/− embryos identified PDGFR-α as a critical mediator of signaling in the early testis at multiple steps of testis development. Pdgfr-α−/− XY gonads displayed disruptions in the organization of the vasculature and in the partitioning of interstitial and testis cord compartments. Closer examination revealed severe reductions in characteristic XY proliferation, mesonephric cell migration, and fetal Leydig cell differentiation. This work identifies PDGF signaling through the α receptor as an important event downstream of Sry in testis organogenesis and Leydig cell differentiation. PMID:12651897

  9. Effects of strenuous maternal exercise on fetal organ weights and skeletal muscle development in rats.

    PubMed

    Mottola, M F; Bagnall, K M; Belcastro, A N

    1989-02-01

    The purpose of the present study was to observe the effects of strenuous maternal aerobic exercise throughout gestation on fetal outcome in the rat. The strenuous exercise intensity consisted of a treadmill speed of 30 m.min-1 on a 10 degrees incline, for 120 min.day-1, 5 days.week-1. The rats were conditioned to run on a motor-driven treadmill by following a progressive two-week exercise program, so that by the end of the two weeks the rats were capable of running comfortably at this strenuous intensity in the non-pregnant state. Following the two-week running programme, the rats were paired by weight and randomly assigned to either a pregnant group that continued the running program throughout gestation (pregnant runner), or a pregnant group that did not continue the running program throughout pregnancy (pregnant control). At birth the neonates born to the pregnant running group did not differ in average neonatal body weight values, number per litter or total litter weight values when compared to controls, nor were superficial gross abnormalities observed in neonates born to the pregnant control or pregnant running groups. The strenuous maternal exercise intensity did not alter neonatal organ weight values (brain, heart, liver, lung, kidney), nor neonatal skeletal muscle (gastrocnemius, sternomastoid, diaphragm) when compared to control values. It is suggested that maternal exercise of this intensity throughout gestation does not affect fetal outcome in the rat, and may be due to the animals accustomization to the strenuous exercise protocol prior to pregnancy.

  10. Repercussions of mild diabetes on pregnancy in Wistar rats and on the fetal development

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Background Experimental models are necessary to elucidate diabetes pathophysiological mechanisms not yet understood in humans. Objective: To evaluate the repercussions of the mild diabetes, considering two methodologies, on the pregnancy of Wistar rats and on the development of their offspring. Methods In the 1st induction, female offspring were distributed into two experimental groups: Group streptozotocin (STZ, n = 67): received the β-cytotoxic agent (100 mg STZ/kg body weight - sc) on the 1st day of the life; and Non-diabetic Group (ND, n = 14): received the vehicle in a similar time period. In the adult life, the animals were mated. After a positive diagnosis of pregnancy (0), female rats from group STZ presenting with lower glycemia than 120 mg/dL received more 20 mg STZ/kg (ip) at day 7 of pregnancy (2nd induction). The female rats with glycemia higher than 120 mg/dL were discarded because they reproduced results already found in the literature. In the mornings of days 0, 7, 14 and 21 of the pregnancy glycemia was determined. At day 21 of pregnancy (at term), the female rats were anesthetized and killed for maternal reproductive performance and fetal development analysis. The data were analyzed using Student-Newman-Keuls, Chi-square and Zero-inflated Poisson (ZIP) Tests (p < 0.05). Results STZ rats presented increased rates of pre (STZ = 22.0%; ND = 5.1%) and post-implantation losses (STZ = 26.1%; ND = 5.7%), reduced rates of fetuses with appropriate weight for gestational age (STZ = 66%; ND = 93%) and reduced degree of development (ossification sites). Conclusion Mild diabetes led a negative impact on maternal reproductive performance and caused intrauterine growth restriction and impaired fetal development. PMID:20416073

  11. Expression pattern of glypican-3 (GPC3) during human embryonic and fetal development.

    PubMed

    Iglesias, Bibiana V; Centeno, Gloria; Pascuccelli, Hector; Ward, Flavia; Peters, María Giselle; Filmus, Jorge; Puricelli, Lydia; de Kier Joffé, Elisa Bal

    2008-11-01

    Glypicans represent a family of cell surface proteoglycans. Loss-of-function mutations in the human glypican-3 (GPC3) gene results in the Simpson-Golabi-Behmel syndrome, characterized by severe malformations and pre- and postnatal overgrowth. Because the expression of GPC3 during human embryonic and fetal periods remains largely unknown, we investigated by immunohistochemistry its pattern of expression during four periods of human development covering the embryonic period (P1) from 5 to 8 weeks of development, and the fetal periods (P2, P3 and P4) from 9 to 28 weeks of development. Hepatocytes were homogeneously positive for GPC3 during the four periods while pancreatic acini and ducts showed a rather high staining only during P1. GPC3 was also detected in several kidney structures and in the genital system where the sex cords were weakly positive in P1 and P2. In later developmental stages the male's genital system expressed GPC3 while the female's did not. While the mesenchyme in the limbs showed positive staining in P1, GPC3 was not detected during the following stages. The mesenchymal tissue localized between the most caudal vertebrae was also positive in P1. A strong GPC3 signal was observed in neurons of the spinal cord and dorsal root ganglia in P2 and P3, while the brain was negative. In sum our studies revealed that GPC3 expression is highly tissue- and stage-specific during human development. The expression pattern of GPC3 is consistent with the abnormalities seen in the Simpson-Golabi-Behmel syndrome.

  12. Comparison of ceftiofur hydrochloride and estradiol cypionate for metritis prevention and reproductive performance in dairy cows affected with retained fetal membranes.

    PubMed

    Risco, C A; Hernandez, J

    2003-06-01

    The objective of this study was to compare the effect of ceftiofur hydrochloride and estradiol cypionate (ECP) administration for metritis prevention and reproductive performance in dairy cows affected with retained fetal membranes (RFMs). After parturition, 97 dairy cows affected with RFM from a single dairy herd were randomly allocated to 1 of 3 treatment groups. Cows in-group 1 (n=31) were treated daily for 5 days with ceftiofur hydrochloride (2.2mg/kg, i.m.); cows in group 2 (n=33) were treated once with ECP (4 mg, i.m.); and cows in group 3 (n=33) were not treated. The proportion of cows with metritis, uterine involution patterns and the calving-to-conception interval were compared between groups. The proportion of cows that developed metritis was significantly different (P<0.05) in cows treated with ceftiofur hydrochloride (13%), compared with cows treated with ECP (42%) or cows that received no treatment (42%). Uterine involution patterns (i.e. median time to complete retraction of the uterus and mean diameter measure of cervix and uterine horns) were not significantly different between groups. Cows treated with ECP were 0.40 times as likely to conceive as control cows (P=0.05); median time to conception in cows treated with ECP (192 days) was longer, compared to control cows (124 days). We conclude that systemic administration of ceftioufur hydrochloride is beneficial for prevention of metritis, but its effect on reproductive performance was not significantly different to that of ECP or no treatment. In addition, administration of ECP did not have beneficial effects on metritis prevention and reproductive performance.

  13. Recent developments in affective recommender systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Katarya, Rahul; Verma, Om Prakash

    2016-11-01

    Recommender systems (RSs) are playing a significant role since 1990s as they provide relevant, personalized information to the users over the internet. Lots of work have been done in information filtering, utilization, and application related to RS. However, an important area recently draws our attention which is affective recommender system. Affective recommender system (ARS) is latest trending area of research, as publication in this domain are few and recently published. ARS is associated with human behaviour, human factors, mood, senses, emotions, facial expressions, body gesture and physiological with human-computer interaction (HCI). Due to this assortment and various interests, more explanation is required, as it is in premature phase and growing as compared to other fields. So we have done literature review (LR) in the affective recommender systems by doing classification, incorporate reputed articles published from the year 2003 to February 2016. We include articles which highlight, analyse, and perform a study on affective recommender systems. This article categorizes, synthesizes, and discusses the research and development in ARS. We have classified and managed ARS papers according to different perspectives: research gaps, nature, algorithm or method adopted, datasets, the platform on executed, types of information and evaluation techniques applied. The researchers and professionals will positively support this survey article for understanding the current position, research in affective recommender systems and will guide future trends, opportunity and research focus in ARS.

  14. Maternal Pharmacokinetics and Fetal Disposition of (±)-Citalopram during Mouse Pregnancy

    PubMed Central

    2016-01-01

    While selective-serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI) antidepressants are commonly prescribed in the treatment of depression, their use during pregnancy leads to fetal drug exposures. According to recent reports, such exposures could affect fetal development and long-term offspring health. A central question is how pregnancy-induced physical and physiological changes in mothers, fetuses, and the placenta influence fetal SSRI exposures during gestation. In this study, we examined the effects of gestational stage on the maternal pharmacokinetics and fetal disposition of the SSRI (±)-citalopram (CIT) in a mouse model. We determined the maternal and fetal CIT serum concentration–time profiles following acute maternal administration on gestational days (GD)14 and GD18, as well as the fetal brain drug disposition. The results show that pregnancy affects the pharmacokinetics of CIT and that maternal drug clearance increases as gestation progresses. The data further show that CIT and its primary metabolite desmethylcitalopram (DCIT) readily cross the placenta into the fetal compartment, and fetal exposure to CIT exceeds that of the mother during gestation 2 h after maternal administration. Enzymatic activity assays revealed that fetal drug metabolic capacity develops in late gestation, resulting in elevated circulating and brain concentrations of DCIT at embryonic day (E)18. Fetal exposure to the SSRI CIT in murine pregnancy is therefore influenced by both maternal gestational stage and embryonic development, suggesting potential time-dependent effects on fetal brain development. PMID:26765210

  15. ATF4 plays a pivotal role in the development of functional hematopoietic stem cells in mouse fetal liver.

    PubMed

    Zhao, Yunze; Zhou, Jie; Liu, Dan; Dong, Fang; Cheng, Hui; Wang, Weili; Pang, Yakun; Wang, Yajie; Mu, Xiaohuan; Ni, Yanli; Li, Zhuan; Xu, Huiyu; Hao, Sha; Wang, Xiaochen; Ma, Shihui; Wang, Qian-fei; Xiao, Guozhi; Yuan, Weiping; Liu, Bing; Cheng, Tao

    2015-11-19

    The fetal liver (FL) serves as a predominant site for expansion of functional hematopoietic stem cells (HSCs) during mouse embryogenesis. However, the mechanisms for HSC development in FL remain poorly understood. In this study, we demonstrate that deletion of activating transcription factor 4 (ATF4) significantly impaired hematopoietic development and reduced HSC self-renewal in FL. In contrast, generation of the first HSC population in the aorta-gonad-mesonephros region was not affected. The migration activity of ATF4(-/-) HSCs was moderately reduced. Interestingly, the HSC-supporting ability of both endothelial and stromal cells in FL was significantly compromised in the absence of ATF4. Gene profiling using RNA-seq revealed downregulated expression of a panel of cytokines in ATF4(-/-) stromal cells, including angiopoietin-like protein 3 (Angptl3) and vascular endothelial growth factor A (VEGFA). Addition of Angptl3, but not VEGFA, partially rescued the repopulating defect of ATF4(-/-) HSCs in the culture. Furthermore, chromatin immunoprecipitation assay in conjunction with silencing RNA-mediated silencing and complementary DNA overexpression showed transcriptional control of Angptl3 by ATF4. To summarize, ATF4 plays a pivotal role in functional expansion and repopulating efficiency of HSCs in developing FL, and it acts through upregulating transcription of cytokines such as Angptl3 in the microenvironment.

  16. Development of a multi-residue method in a fetal matrix: analysis of meconium.

    PubMed

    Meyer-Monath, Marie; Chatellier, Claudine; Rouget, Florence; Morel, Isabelle; Lestremau, Francois

    2014-12-01

    Meconium is the earliest stool of newborns. It is a complex matrix that reflects the degree of fetal exposure to environmental pollutants. To investigate exposure to xenobiotics, an analytical method was developed to identify and quantify some pesticides and their metabolites and BTEX metabolites in meconium. Samples were prepared by two liquid-solid extractions and purified twice using SPE cartridges, followed by analysis with liquid chromatography coupled with tandem mass spectrometry. SPE cartridges (polymeric phase with hydrophilic and hydrophobic interactions, ion exchange, mixed mode) were tested and matrix effects were evaluated to determine purification performance. The quantification limits in meconium of this multi-residue method were in the range of 30 ng g(-1). The analytical method was applied to "real" meconium samples. Some target analytes were determined in most samples.

  17. Alteration of Rat Fetal Cerebral Cortex Development after Prenatal Exposure to Polychlorinated Biphenyls

    PubMed Central

    Naveau, Elise; Pinson, Anneline; Gérard, Arlette; Nguyen, Laurent; Charlier, Corinne; Thomé, Jean-Pierre; Zoeller, R. Thomas; Bourguignon, Jean-Pierre; Parent, Anne-Simone

    2014-01-01

    Polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) are environmental contaminants that persist in environment and human tissues. Perinatal exposure to these endocrine disruptors causes cognitive deficits and learning disabilities in children. These effects may involve their ability to interfere with thyroid hormone (TH) action. We tested the hypothesis that developmental exposure to PCBs can concomitantly alter TH levels and TH-regulated events during cerebral cortex development: progenitor proliferation, cell cycle exit and neuron migration. Pregnant rats exposed to the commercial PCB mixture Aroclor 1254 ended gestation with reduced total and free serum thyroxine levels. Exposure to Aroclor 1254 increased cell cycle exit of the neuronal progenitors and delayed radial neuronal migration in the fetal cortex. Progenitor cell proliferation, cell death and differentiation rate were not altered by prenatal exposure to PCBs. Given that PCBs remain ubiquitous, though diminishing, contaminants in human systems, it is important that we further understand their deleterious effects in the brain. PMID:24642964

  18. Alteration of rat fetal cerebral cortex development after prenatal exposure to polychlorinated biphenyls.

    PubMed

    Naveau, Elise; Pinson, Anneline; Gérard, Arlette; Nguyen, Laurent; Charlier, Corinne; Thomé, Jean-Pierre; Zoeller, R Thomas; Bourguignon, Jean-Pierre; Parent, Anne-Simone

    2014-01-01

    Polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) are environmental contaminants that persist in environment and human tissues. Perinatal exposure to these endocrine disruptors causes cognitive deficits and learning disabilities in children. These effects may involve their ability to interfere with thyroid hormone (TH) action. We tested the hypothesis that developmental exposure to PCBs can concomitantly alter TH levels and TH-regulated events during cerebral cortex development: progenitor proliferation, cell cycle exit and neuron migration. Pregnant rats exposed to the commercial PCB mixture Aroclor 1254 ended gestation with reduced total and free serum thyroxine levels. Exposure to Aroclor 1254 increased cell cycle exit of the neuronal progenitors and delayed radial neuronal migration in the fetal cortex. Progenitor cell proliferation, cell death and differentiation rate were not altered by prenatal exposure to PCBs. Given that PCBs remain ubiquitous, though diminishing, contaminants in human systems, it is important that we further understand their deleterious effects in the brain.

  19. Air pollution effects on fetal and child development: a cohort comparison in China.

    PubMed

    Tang, Deliang; Li, Ting Yu; Chow, Judith C; Kulkarni, Sanasi U; Watson, John G; Ho, Steven Sai Hang; Quan, Zhang Y; Qu, L R; Perera, Frederica

    2014-02-01

    In Tongliang, China, a coal-fired power plant was the major pollution source until its shutdown in 2004. We enrolled two cohorts of nonsmoking women and their newborns before and after the shutdown to examine the relationship between prenatal exposure to polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) and fetal and child growth and development. PAHs were used to measure exposure to air pollution generated by the power plant. Using PAH-DNA adduct levels as biomarkers for the biologically effective dose of PAH exposure, we examined whether PAH-DNA adduct levels were associated with birth outcome, growth rate, and neurodevelopment. Head circumference was greater in children of the second cohort, compared with the first (p = 0.001), consistent with significantly reduced levels of cord blood PAH-DNA adducts in cohort II (p < 0.001) and reduced levels of ambient PAHs (p = 0.01).

  20. Variability in Classroom Social Communication: Performance of Children with Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders and Typically Developing Peers

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kjellmer, Liselotte; Olswang, Lesley B.

    2013-01-01

    Purpose: In this study, the authors examined how variability in classroom social communication performance differed between children with fetal alcohol spectrum disorders (FASD) and pair-matched, typically developing peers. Method: Twelve pairs of children were observed in their classrooms, 40 min per day (20 min per child) for 4 days over a…

  1. Comparative assessments of the effects of alcohol exposure on fetal brain development using optical coherence tomography and ultrasound imaging

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sudheendran, Narendran; Bake, Shameena; Miranda, Rajesh C.; Larin, Kirill V.

    2013-02-01

    The developing fetal brain is vulnerable to a variety of environmental agents including maternal ethanol consumption. Preclinical studies on the development and amelioration of fetal teratology would be significantly facilitated by the application of high resolution imaging technologies like optical coherence tomography (OCT) and high-frequency ultrasound (US). This study investigates the ability of these imaging technologies to measure the effects of maternal ethanol exposure on brain development, ex vivo, in fetal mice. Pregnant mice at gestational day 12.5 were administered ethanol (3 g/Kg b.wt.) or water by intragastric gavage, twice daily for three consecutive days. On gestational day 14.5, fetuses were collected and imaged. Three-dimensional images of the mice fetus brains were obtained by OCT and high-resolution US, and the volumes of the left and right ventricles of the brain were measured. Ethanol-exposed fetuses exhibited a statistically significant, 2-fold increase in average left and right ventricular volumes compared with the ventricular volume of control fetuses, with OCT-derived measures of 0.38 and 0.18 mm3, respectively, whereas the boundaries of the fetal mouse lateral ventricles were not clearly definable with US imaging. Our results indicate that OCT is a useful technology for assessing ventriculomegaly accompanying alcohol-induced developmental delay. This study clearly demonstrated advantages of using OCT for quantitative assessment of embryonic development compared with US imaging.

  2. The Relationship of Maternal Age, Quickening, and Physical Symptoms of Pregnancy on the Development of Maternal-Fetal Attachment

    DTIC Science & Technology

    1988-01-01

    Monographs, 95, 55-96. Lips, H. (1985). A longitudinal study of the reporting of emotional and somatic symptoms during and after pregnancy. Social ... Medicine , 21(6), 631-640. LoBiondo-Wood, G. (1985). The Progression of Pregnancy _ Symptoms in Pregnancy and the Development of Maternal-Fetal Attachment

  3. PAH-DNA adducts in cord blood and fetal and child development in a Chinese cohort

    SciTech Connect

    Tang, D.L.; Li, T.Y.; Liu, J.J.; Chen, Y.H.; Qu, L.R.; Perera, F.

    2006-08-15

    Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) are an important class of toxic pollutants released by fossil fuel combustion. Other pollutants include metals and particulate matter. PAH-DNA adducts, or benzo(a)pyrene (BaP) adducts as their proxy, provide a chemical-specific measure of individual biologically effective doses that have been associated with increased risk of cancer and adverse birth outcomes. In the present study we examined the relationship between prenatal PAH exposure and fetal and child growth and development in Tongliang, China, where a seasonally operated coal-fired power plant was the major pollution source. In a cohort of 150 nonsmoking women and their newborns enrolled between 4 March 2002 and 19 June 2002, BaP-DNA adducts were measured in maternal and umbilical cord blood obtained at delivery. High PAH-DNA adduct levels (above the median of detectable adduct level) were associated with decreased birth head circumference (p = 0.057) and reduced children's weight at 18 months, 24 months, and 30 months of age (p {lt} 0.05), after controlling for potential confounders. In addition, in separate models, longer duration of prenatal exposure was associated with reduced birth length (p = 0.033) and reduced children's height at 18 (p = 0.001), 24 (p {lt} 0.001), and 30 months of age (p {lt} 0.001). The findings suggest that exposure to elevated levels of PAHS, with the Tongliang power plant being a significant source, is associated with reduced fetal and child growth in this population.

  4. Structural Development, Cellular Differentiation and Proliferation of the Respiratory Epithelium in the Bovine Fetal Lung.

    PubMed

    Drozdowska, J; Cousens, C; Finlayson, J; Collie, D; Dagleish, M P

    2016-01-01

    Fetal bovine lung samples of 11 different gestational ages were assigned to a classical developmental stage based on histological morphology. Immunohistochemistry was used to characterize the morphology of forming airways, proliferation rate of airway epithelium and the presence of epithelial cell types (i.e. ciliated cells, club cells, neuroepithelial cells (NECs) and type II pneumocytes). Typical structural organization of pseudoglandular (84-98 days gestational age [DGA]), canalicular (154-168 DGA) and alveolar (224-266 DGA) stages was recognized. In addition, transitional pseudoglandular-canalicular (112-126 DGA) and canalicular-saccular (182 DGA) morphologies were present. The embryonic stage was not observed. A significantly (P <0.05) higher proliferation rate of pulmonary epithelium, on average 5.5% and 4.4% in bronchi and bronchioles, respectively, was present in the transitional pseudoglandular-canalicular phase (112-126 DGA) compared with all other phases, while from 8 weeks before term (224-266 DGA) proliferation had almost ceased. The first epithelial cells identified by specific marker proteins in the earliest samples available for study (84 DGA) were ciliated cells and NECs. Club cells were present initially at 112 DGA and type II pneumocytes at 224 DGA. At the latest time points (224-226 DGA) these latter cell types were still present at a much lower percentage compared with adult cattle. This study characterized bovine fetal lung development by histological morphology and cellular composition of the respiratory epithelium and suggests that the apparent structural anatomical maturity of the bovine lung at term is not matched by functional maturity of the respiratory epithelium.

  5. The genotype-dependent influence of functionalized multiwalled carbon nanotubes on fetal development.

    PubMed

    Huang, Xinglu; Zhang, Fan; Sun, Xiaolian; Choi, Ki-Young; Niu, Gang; Zhang, Guofeng; Guo, Jinxia; Lee, Seulki; Chen, Xiaoyuan

    2014-01-01

    In many cases cancer is caused by gene deficiency that is being passed along from generation to generation. Soluble carbon nanotubes (CNTs) have shown promising applications in the diagnosis and therapy of cancer, however, the potential relationship between cancer-prone individuals and response to CNT exposure as a prerequisite for development of personalized nanomedicine, is still poorly understood. Here we report that intravenous injections of multi-walled carbon nanotubes into p53 (a well-known cancer-susceptible gene) heterozygous pregnant mice can induce p53- dependent responses in fetal development. Larger sized multi-walled carbon nanotubes moved across the blood-placenta barrier (BPB), restricted the development of fetuses, and induced brain deformity, whereas single-walled and smaller sized multi-walled carbon nanotubes showed no or less fetotoxicity. A molecular mechanism study found that multi-walled carbon nanotubes directly triggered p53-dependent apoptosis and cell cycle arrest in response to DNA damage. Based on the molecular mechanism, we also incorporated N-acetylcysteine (NAC), an FDA approved antioxidant, to prevent CNTs induced nuclear DNA damage and reduce brain development abnormalities. Our findings suggest that CNTs might have genetic background-dependent toxic effect on the normal development of the embryo, and provide new insights into protection against nanoparticle-induced toxicity in potential clinical applications.

  6. Hazardous Apoptotic Effects of 2-Bromopropane on Maturation of Mouse Oocytes, Fertilization, and Fetal Development

    PubMed Central

    Chan, Wen-Hsiung

    2010-01-01

    2-Bromopropane (2-BP) is used as an alternative to ozone-depleting cleaning solvents. Previously, we reported that 2-BP has cytotoxic effects on mouse blastocysts and is associated with defects in subsequent development. Here, we further investigate the effects of 2-BP on oocyte maturation and subsequent pre- and post-implantation development, both in vitro and in vivo. Notably, 2-BP induced a significant reduction in the rates of oocyte maturation, fertilization, and in vitro embryonic development. Treatment of oocytes with 2-BP during in vitro maturation (IVM) resulted in increased resorption of postimplantation embryos and decreased fetal weights. Experiments with a mouse model disclosed that consumption of drinking water containing 20 μM 2-BP led to decreased oocyte maturation in vivo and fertilization in vitro, as well as impairment of early embryonic development. Interestingly, pretreatment with a caspase-3-specific inhibitor effectively prevented 2-BP-triggered hazardous effects, suggesting that embryonic impairment by 2-BP occurs via a caspase-dependent apoptotic process. A study using embryonic stem cells as the assay model conclusively demonstrated that 2-BP induces cell death processes through apoptosis and not necrosis, and inhibits early embryo development in mouse embryonic stem cells. These results collectively confirm the hazardous effects of 2-BP on embryos derived from pretreated oocytes. PMID:21151443

  7. From research to practice: an integrative framework for the development of interventions for children with fetal alcohol spectrum disorders.

    PubMed

    Kodituwakku, Piyadasa W; Kodituwakku, E Louise

    2011-06-01

    Since fetal alcohol syndrome was first described over 35 years ago, considerable progress has been made in the delineation of the neurocognitive profile in children with prenatal alcohol exposure. Preclinical investigators have made impressive strides in elucidating the mechanisms of alcohol teratogenesis and in testing the effectiveness of pharmacological agents and dietary supplementation in the amelioration of alcohol-induced deficits. Despite these advances, only limited progress has been made in the development of evidence-based comprehensive interventions for functional impairment in alcohol-exposed children. Having performed a search in PubMed and PsycINFO using key words, interventions, treatment, fetal alcohol syndrome, prenatal alcohol exposure, and fetal alcohol spectrum disorders, we found only 12 papers on empirically-based interventions. Only two of these interventions had been replicated and none met the criteria of "well-established," as defined by Chambless and Hollon (Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology 66(1):7-18, 1998). There has been only limited cross-fertilization of ideas between preclinical and clinical research with regard to the development of interventions. Therefore, we propose a framework that allows integrating data from preclinical and clinical investigations to develop comprehensive intervention programs for children with fetal alcohol spectrum disorders. This framework underscores the importance of multi-level evaluations and interventions.

  8. The development of fetal dosimetry and its application to A-bomb survivors exposed in utero.

    PubMed

    Chen, Jing

    2012-03-01

    The cohort of the atomic bomb survivors of Hiroshima and Nagasaki comprises the major basis for investigations of health effects induced by ionising radiation in humans. To study the health effects associated with radiation exposure before birth, fetal dosimetry is needed if significant differences exist between the fetal absorbed dose and the mother's uterine dose. Combining total neutron and gamma ray free-in-air fluences at 1 m above ground with fluence-to-absorbed dose conversion coefficients, fetal doses were calculated for various exposure orientations at the ground distance of 1500 m from the hypocentres in Hiroshima and Nagasaki. The results showed that the mother's uterine dose can serve as a good surrogate for the dose of the embryo and fetus in the first trimester. However, significant differences exist between doses of the fetus of different ages. If the mother's uterine dose were used as a surrogate, doses to the fetus in the last two trimesters could be overestimated by more than 20 % for exposure orientations facing towards and away from the hypocentre while significantly underestimated for lateral positions relative to the hypocentre. In newer fetal models, the brain is modelled for all fetal ages. Brain doses to the 3-month fetus are generally higher than those to an embryo and fetus of other ages. In most cases, brain absorbed doses differ significantly from the doses to the entire fetal body. In order to accurately assess radiation effects to the fetal brain, it is necessary to determine brain doses separately.

  9. STUDIES IN FETAL BEHAVIOR: REVISITED, RENEWED, AND REIMAGINED.

    PubMed

    DiPietro, Janet A; Costigan, Kathleen A; Voegtline, Kristin M

    2015-09-01

    Among the earliest volumes of this monograph series was a report by Lester Sontag and colleagues, of the esteemed Fels Institute, on the heart rate of the human fetus as an expression of the developing nervous system. Here, some 75 years later, we commemorate this work and provide historical and contemporary context on knowledge regarding fetal development, as well as results from our own research. These are based on synchronized monitoring of maternal and fetal parameters assessed between 24 and 36 weeks gestation on 740 maternal-fetal pairs compiled from eight separate longitudinal studies, which commenced in the early 1990s. Data include maternal heart rate, respiratory sinus arrhythmia, and electrodrmal activity and fetal heartrate, motor activity, and their integration. Hierarchical linear modeling of developmental trajectories reveals that the fetus develops in predictable ways consistent with advancing parasympathetic regulation. Findings also include:within-fetus stability (i.e., preservation of rank ordering over time) for heart rate, motor, and coupling measures; a transitional period of decelerating development near 30 weeks gestation; sex differences in fetal heart rate measures but not in most fetal motor activity measures; modest correspondence in fetal neurodevelopment among siblings as compared to unrelated fetuses; and deviations from normative fetal development in fetuses affected by intrauterine growth restriction and other conditions. Maternal parameters also change during this period of gestation and there is evidence that fetal sex and individual variation in fetal neurobehavior influence maternal physio-logical processes and the local intrauterine context. Results are discussed within the framework of neuromaturation, the emergence of individual differences, and the bidirectional nature of the maternal-fetal relationship.We pose a number of open questions for future research. Although the human fetus remains just out of reach, new

  10. Studies in Fetal Behavior: Revisited, Renewed, and Reimagined

    PubMed Central

    DiPietro, Janet A.; Costigan, Kathleen A.; Voegtline, Kristin M.

    2016-01-01

    Among the earliest volumes of this Monograph series was a report by Lester Sontag and colleagues, of the esteemed Fels Institute, on the heart rate of the human fetus as an expression of the developing nervous system. Here, some 75 years later, we commemorate this work and provide historical and contemporary context on knowledge regarding fetal development, as well as results from our own research. These are based on synchronized monitoring of maternal and fetal parameters assessed between 24 and 36 weeks gestation on 740 maternal-fetal pairs compiled from eight separate longitudinal studies, which commenced in the early 1990s. Data include maternal heart rate, respiratory sinus arrhythmia, and electrodermal activity and fetal heart rate, motor activity, and their integration. Hierarchical linear modeling of developmental trajectories reveals that the fetus develops in predictable ways consistent with advancing parasympathetic regulation. Findings also include: within-fetus stability (i.e., preservation of rank ordering over time) for heart rate, motor, and coupling measures; a transitional period of decelerating development near 30 weeks gestation; sex differences in fetal heart rate measures but not in most fetal motor activity measures; modest correspondence in fetal neurodevelopment among siblings as compared to unrelated fetuses; and deviations from normative fetal development in fetuses affected by intrauterine growth restriction and other conditions. Maternal parameters also change during this period of gestation and there is evidence that fetal sex and individual variation in fetal neurobehavior influence maternal physiological processes and the local intrauterine context. Results are discussed within the framework of neuromaturation, the emergence of individual differences, and the bidirectional nature of the maternal-fetal relationship. We pose a number of open questions for future research. Although the human fetus remains just out of reach, new

  11. [The influence of hyperleptinemia during pregnancy on fetal weight and obesity development in progeny mice with agouti yellow mutation].

    PubMed

    Makarova, E N; Syracheva, M S; Bazhan, N M

    2014-03-01

    Maternal obesity increases the risk of obesity in the offspring, and obesity is accompanied by an increase in blood leptin levels. Leptin can influence the progeny metabolism via its influence on fetal growth and, possibly, via its action on AgRP expression in placenta. The "yellow" mutation at the mouse agouti locus (A(y)) evokes obesity and increases blood leptin levels in pregnant mice. The aim was to examine the influence of A(y) mutation in pregnant mice on fetal weight, placental expression of AgRP gene and food intake and obesity development in progeny. A(y) pregnant females as compared to control ones had increased circulating leptin levels on days 13 and 18 of pregnancy. Both fetal weight and placental expression of AgRP gene were increased on day 13 of pregnancy and decreased on day 18 of pregnancy in A(y) females as compared to control ones. Both control (a/a) and obesity prone (A(y)/a) male young born to A(y) mothers had lowered body weight and enhanced food intake between 5 and 11 weeks of age as compared to male progeny of control mothers. The enhanced leptin levels during pregnancy in mice are associated with retardation of obesity development in obesity prone male offspring and with changes in fetal weight and AgRP gene expression in placenta.

  12. Fetal Membrane Ultrastructure and Development in the Oviparous Milksnake Lampropeltis triangulum (Colubridae) with Reference to Function and Evolution in Snakes.

    PubMed

    Kim, Young K; Blackburn, Daniel G

    2016-07-01

    In eggs of oviparous reptiles, fetal membranes maintain developing embryos through the exchange of respiratory gases and provision of water and calcium. As part of a survey of reptilian fetal membranes, we used scanning electron microscopy to study fetal membrane morphology in the oviparous Pueblan milksnake, Lampropeltis triangulum campbelli. The chorioallantois initially is an avascular structure lined by enlarged chorionic and allantoic epithelia. Upon vascularization, the chorionic epithelium becomes greatly attenuated, enhancing the potential for gas exchange; the allantoic epithelium also flattens. The bilaminar omphalopleure of the yolk sac lacks blood vessels, but it becomes vascularized by allantoic capillaries and transformed into an omphalallantois. Upon regression of the isolated yolk mass, this membrane is converted to chorioallantois, equipping it for gas exchange. Allantoic fluid serves as a water reservoir, and we postulate that it facilitates water uptake by establishing an osmotic gradient. Early in development, epithelia of both the chorion and the omphalopleure show apical microvilli that greatly increase the cell surface area available for water uptake. However, these features are incompatible with gas exchange and are lost as oxygen needs take precedence. A comparison of the fetal membranes to those of other squamate species (both oviparous and viviparous) reveals characteristics that are probably ancestral for snakes, some of which are plesiomorphic for Squamata. The widespread phylogenetic distribution of these features reflects their utility as adaptations that serve functional requirements of squamate embryos.

  13. The shared pathoetiological effects of particulate air pollution and the social environment on fetal-placental development.

    PubMed

    Erickson, Anders C; Arbour, Laura

    2014-01-01

    Exposure to particulate air pollution and socioeconomic risk factors are shown to be independently associated with adverse pregnancy outcomes; however, their confounding relationship is an epidemiological challenge that requires understanding of their shared etiologic pathways affecting fetal-placental development. The purpose of this paper is to explore the etiological mechanisms associated with exposure to particulate air pollution in contributing to adverse pregnancy outcomes and how these mechanisms intersect with those related to socioeconomic status. Here we review the role of oxidative stress, inflammation and endocrine modification in the pathoetiology of deficient deep placentation and detail how the physical and social environments can act alone and collectively to mediate the established pathology linked to a spectrum of adverse pregnancy outcomes. We review the experimental and epidemiological literature showing that diet/nutrition, smoking, and psychosocial stress share similar pathways with that of particulate air pollution exposure to potentially exasperate the negative effects of either insult alone. Therefore, socially patterned risk factors often treated as nuisance parameters should be explored as potential effect modifiers that may operate at multiple levels of social geography. The degree to which deleterious exposures can be ameliorated or exacerbated via community-level social and environmental characteristics needs further exploration.

  14. The Shared Pathoetiological Effects of Particulate Air Pollution and the Social Environment on Fetal-Placental Development

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Exposure to particulate air pollution and socioeconomic risk factors are shown to be independently associated with adverse pregnancy outcomes; however, their confounding relationship is an epidemiological challenge that requires understanding of their shared etiologic pathways affecting fetal-placental development. The purpose of this paper is to explore the etiological mechanisms associated with exposure to particulate air pollution in contributing to adverse pregnancy outcomes and how these mechanisms intersect with those related to socioeconomic status. Here we review the role of oxidative stress, inflammation and endocrine modification in the pathoetiology of deficient deep placentation and detail how the physical and social environments can act alone and collectively to mediate the established pathology linked to a spectrum of adverse pregnancy outcomes. We review the experimental and epidemiological literature showing that diet/nutrition, smoking, and psychosocial stress share similar pathways with that of particulate air pollution exposure to potentially exasperate the negative effects of either insult alone. Therefore, socially patterned risk factors often treated as nuisance parameters should be explored as potential effect modifiers that may operate at multiple levels of social geography. The degree to which deleterious exposures can be ameliorated or exacerbated via community-level social and environmental characteristics needs further exploration. PMID:25574176

  15. Developing Hierarchical Structures Integrating Cognition and Affect.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hurst, Barbara Martin

    Several categories of the affective domain are important to the schooling process. Schools are delegated the responsibility of helping students to clarify their esthetic, instrumental, and moral values. Three areas of affect are related to student achievement: subject-related affect, school-related affect, and academic self concept. In addition,…

  16. Ultrasonographic monitoring of fetal development in unrestrained bonobos (Pan paniscus) at the Milwaukee County Zoo.

    PubMed

    Drews, Barbara; Harmann, Leanne M; Beehler, Leann L; Bell, Barbara; Drews, Reinhard F; Hildebrandt, Thomas B

    2011-01-01

    The bonobo, Pan paniscus, is one of the most endangered primate species. In the context of the Bonobo Species Survival Plan(®), the Milwaukee County Zoo established a successful breeding group. Although the bonobo serves as a model species for human evolution, no prenatal growth curves are available. To develop growth graphs, the animals at the Milwaukee County Zoo were trained by positive reinforcement to allow for ultrasound exams without restraint. With this method, the well being of mother and fetus were maintained and ultrasound exams could be performed frequently. The ovulation date of the four animals in the study was determined exactly so that gestational age was known for each examination. Measurements of biparietal diameter (BPD), head circumference (HC), abdominal circumference (AC), and femur length (FL) were used to create growth curves. Prenatal growth of P. paniscus was compared with the data of humans and the common chimpanzee, P. troglodytes. With respect to cranial structures, such as BPD and HC, humans have significant acceleration of growth compared with P. paniscus and P. troglodytes. In P. paniscus, growth of AC was similar to HC throughout pregnancy, whereas in humans AC only reaches the level of HC close to term. Growth rate of FL was similar in humans and the two Pan species until near day 180 post-ovulation. After that, the Pan species FL growth slowed compared with human FL. The newly developed fetal growth curves of P. paniscus will assist in monitoring prenatal development and predicting birth dates of this highly endangered species.

  17. Cardiac-specific activation of Cre expression at late fetal development

    SciTech Connect

    Opherk, Jan P.; Yampolsky, Peter; Hardt, Stefan E.; Schoels, Wolfgang; Katus, Hugo A.; Koenen, Michael . E-mail: koenen@mpimf-heidelberg.mpg.de; Zehelein, Joerg

    2007-07-27

    In a first step towards dissecting molecular mechanisms that contribute to the development of cardiac diseases, we have generated transgenic mice that express a Cre-GFP fusion protein under the transcriptional control of a 4.3 kb murine cardiac Troponin I gene (cTnI) promoter. Cre-GFP expression, similar in three transgenic lines, is described in one line. In mouse embryos, transgenic for the Cre-GFP and ROSA lacZ reporter allele, first Cre-mediated recombination appeared at 16.5 dpc selectively at the heart. Like the endogenous cTnI gene, transgenic Cre expression showed a slow rise through fetal development that increased neonatally. Bitransgenic hearts, stained at 30 days of age, showed intense signals in ventricular and atrial myocytes while no recombination occurred in other tissues. The delayed onset of Cre activity in cTnI-Cre mice could provide a useful genetic tool to evaluate the function of loxP targeted cardiac genes without interference of recombination during early heart development.

  18. The roles of placental growth hormone and placental lactogen in the regulation of human fetal growth and development.

    PubMed

    Handwerger, S; Freemark, M

    2000-04-01

    The human growth hormone (hGH)/human placental lactogen (hPL) gene family, which consists of two GH and three PL genes, is important in the regulation of maternal and fetal metabolism and the growth and development of the fetus. During pregnancy, pituitary GH (hGH-N) expression in the mother is suppressed; and hGH-V, a GH variant expressed by the placenta, becomes the predominant GH in the mother. hPL, which is the product of the hPL-A and hPL-B genes, is secreted into both the maternal and fetal circulations after the sixth week of pregnancy. hGH-V and hPL act in concert in the mother to stimulate insulin-like growth factor (IGF) production and modulate intermediary metabolism, resulting in an increase in the availability of glucose and amino acids to the fetus. In the fetus, hPL acts via lactogenic receptors and possibly a unique PL receptor to modulate embryonic development, regulate intermediary metabolism and stimulate the production of IGFs, insulin, adrenocortical hormones and pulmonary surfactant. hGH-N, which is expressed by the fetal pituitary, has little or no physiological actions in the fetus until late in pregnancy due to the lack of functional GH receptors on fetal tissues. hGH-V, which is also a potent somatogenic hormone, is not released into the fetus. Taken together, studies of the hGH/hPL gene family during pregnancy reveal a complex interaction of the hormones with one another and with other growth factors. Additional investigations are necessary to clarify the relative roles of the family members in the regulation of fetal growth and development and the factors that modulate the expression of the genes.

  19. Thyroid hormones in fetal growth and prepartum maturation.

    PubMed

    Forhead, A J; Fowden, A L

    2014-06-01

    The thyroid hormones, thyroxine (T4) and triiodothyronine (T3), are essential for normal growth and development of the fetus. Their bioavailability in utero depends on development of the fetal hypothalamic-pituitary-thyroid gland axis and the abundance of thyroid hormone transporters and deiodinases that influence tissue levels of bioactive hormone. Fetal T4 and T3 concentrations are also affected by gestational age, nutritional and endocrine conditions in utero, and placental permeability to maternal thyroid hormones, which varies among species with placental morphology. Thyroid hormones are required for the general accretion of fetal mass and to trigger discrete developmental events in the fetal brain and somatic tissues from early in gestation. They also promote terminal differentiation of fetal tissues closer to term and are important in mediating the prepartum maturational effects of the glucocorticoids that ensure neonatal viability. Thyroid hormones act directly through anabolic effects on fetal metabolism and the stimulation of fetal oxygen consumption. They also act indirectly by controlling the bioavailability and effectiveness of other hormones and growth factors that influence fetal development such as the catecholamines and insulin-like growth factors (IGFs). By regulating tissue accretion and differentiation near term, fetal thyroid hormones ensure activation of physiological processes essential for survival at birth such as pulmonary gas exchange, thermogenesis, hepatic glucogenesis, and cardiac adaptations. This review examines the developmental control of fetal T4 and T3 bioavailability and discusses the role of these hormones in fetal growth and development with particular emphasis on maturation of somatic tissues critical for survival immediately at birth.

  20. Fetal yawning.

    PubMed

    Walusinski, Olivier

    2010-01-01

    Fetal neurobehavioral patterns have been considered as indicators of nervous system development. Moreover, the capacity of 4-dimensional sonography to evaluate complex facial expressions allows recognition of common behaviors with which one can appreciate the prenatal functional development of the central nervous system. Using yawning as an example, we review this interpretation on the basis of knowledge derived from phylogeny and ontogeny. As a flip-flop switch, the reciprocal interactions between sleep- and wake-promoting brain regions allow the emergence of distinct states of arousal. By its ontogenic links with REM sleep, yawning appears to be a behavior which causes arousal reinforcement through the powerful stretching and the neuromuscular connections induced. Yawning indicates a harmonious progress in the development of both the brainstem and the peripheral neuromuscular function, testifying to the induction of an ultradian rhythm of vigilance. The lack of fetal yawn, frequently associated with lack of swallowing (associated or not with retrognathia), may be a key to predicting brainstem dysfunction after birth.

  1. Expression of hyaluronan (hyaluronic acid) in the developing laminar architecture of the human fetal brain.

    PubMed

    Shibata, Shunichi; Cho, Kwang Ho; Kim, Ji Hyun; Abe, Hiroshi; Murakami, Gen; Cho, Baik Hwan

    2013-10-01

    Hyaluronan (also called hyaluronic acid or HA) plays a key role in the morphogenesis of the brain, but little is known about its expression in the human fetal neocortex. Using immunohistochemical methods, we assayed the expression of HA, glial fibrillary acidic protein, vimentin, nestin, and proliferating cell nuclear antigen in paraffin-embedded histologic sections of 8 mid-term fetuses (estimated gestational age, 12-16 weeks; crown-rump length, 75-120mm). At 12-13 weeks, HA was expressed strongly along the membranes of many cells in the cortical plate and the layer 1 or marginal zone, but showed weak, spotty expression in a fiber-rich layer adjacent to the cortical plate, called the cortical stratified transitional field-1 (STF-1 or a primitive form of the subplate). At 15-16 weeks, HA was expressed in the layer 1 and in the early subplate or presubplate, but less strongly in cells of the possible STF-5 near the subventricular zone. However, the positive observation in STF-5 was probably a result of individual difference in development. The developing cortical plate seemed to produce HA in the presubplate to harbor axonal plexus of various afferent systems, while Cajal-Retzius cells were likely to accumulate HA in the layer 1. The HA-rich zones, those sandwiched the cortical plate, might avoid further migration of cortical cells.

  2. Effects of ewe size and nutrition on fetal mammary gland development and lactational performance of offspring at their first lactation.

    PubMed

    van der Linden, D S; Kenyon, P R; Blair, H T; Lopez-Villalobos, N; Jenkinson, C M C; Peterson, S W; Mackenzie, D D S

    2009-12-01

    Many environmental factors applied postnatally are known to affect milk production of the dam, but to date, the effects of different fetal environments on subsequent first lactational performance of the offspring have not been reported. Four hundred fifty heavy (H; 60.8 kg +/- 0.18) and 450 light (L; 42.5 kg +/- 0.17) dams were randomly allocated to ad libitum (A) or maintenance (M) nutritional regimens from d 21 until d 140 of pregnancy, under pastoral grazing conditions (HA, n = 151; HM, n = 153; LA, n = 155; LM, n = 153). At d 100 of pregnancy, a sub-group of twin-bearing dams was killed and fetal mammary glands collected. From 1 wk before lambing, all remaining dams were fed ad libitum until weaning. After weaning, female progeny were managed and fed under pastoral conditions as 1 group. At 2 yr of age, 72 twin-rearing ewe offspring were milked once a week for 7 wk. Fetuses from M-dams had heavier mammary glands (P = 0.03) compared with A-fetuses. Fetuses from H-dams had greater (P = 0.0008) mammary duct area compared with L-fetuses. At 2 yr of age, M-offspring had greater milk yields at d 7 (P = 0.02) and d 28 (P = 0.09) of lactation and tended to have greater accumulated milk yields (P = 0.11) compared with A-offspring. Ewes born to M-dams showed greater lactose percentage at d 14 (P = 0.002), d 21 (P = 0.06), and d 28 (P = 0.07) of lactation and greater (P = 0.049) accumulated lactose yields and CP (P = 0.06) yields compared with A-offspring. Ewes born to H-dams displayed greater milk yields at d 14 (P = 0.08) and d 21 (P = 0.02) and had greater accumulated milk yield (P = 0.08) and lactose yield (P = 0.04) compared with L-offspring. Lambs born to M-offspring were heavier at birth (P = 0.02) and grew faster until weaning (P = 0.02), matching the milk yield and composition data, compared with their ad libitum counterparts. Birth weight was not affected (P > 0.10) by grand dam size; however, lambs born to H-offspring grew faster from birth until d 49 of age (P

  3. BRPF1 is essential for development of fetal hematopoietic stem cells

    PubMed Central

    Li, Lin; Zou, Jinfeng; Yan, Kezhi; Belle, Jad; Nijnik, Anastasia; Wang, Edwin

    2016-01-01

    Hematopoietic stem cells (HSCs) serve as a life-long reservoir for all blood cell types and are clinically useful for a variety of HSC transplantation-based therapies. Understanding the role of chromatin organization and regulation in HSC homeostasis may provide important insights into HSC development. Bromodomain- and PHD finger–containing protein 1 (BRPF1) is a multivalent chromatin regulator that possesses 4 nucleosome-binding domains and activates 3 lysine acetyltransferases (KAT6A, KAT6B, and KAT7), suggesting that this protein has the potential to stimulate crosstalk between different chromatin modifications. Here, we investigated the function of BRPF1 in hematopoiesis by selectively deleting its gene in murine blood cells. Brpf1-deficient pups experienced early lethality due to acute bone marrow failure and aplastic anemia. The mutant bone marrow and fetal liver exhibited severe deficiency in HSCs and hematopoietic progenitors, along with elevated reactive oxygen species, senescence, and apoptosis. BRPF1 deficiency also reduced the expression of multipotency genes, including Slamf1, Mecom, Hoxa9, Hlf, Gfi1, Egr, and Gata3. Furthermore, BRPF1 was required for acetylation of histone H3 at lysine 23, a highly abundant but not well-characterized epigenetic mark. These results identify an essential role of the multivalent chromatin regulator BRPF1 in definitive hematopoiesis and illuminate a potentially new avenue for studying epigenetic networks that govern HSC ontogeny. PMID:27500495

  4. Embryonic and early fetal period development and morphogenesis of human craniovertebral junction.

    PubMed

    Hita-Contreras, Fidel; Roda, Olga; Martínez-Amat, Antonio; Cruz-Díaz, David; Mérida-Velasco, Juan A; Sánchez-Montesinos, Indalecio

    2014-04-01

    Several studies have focused on the cartilaginous, articular, and ligamentous development of the craniovertebral joint (CVJ), but there are no unifying criteria regarding the origin and morphogenetic timetable of the structures that make up the CVJ. In our study, serial sections of 53 human embryonic (n = 27) and fetal (n = 26) specimens from O'Rahilly stages 17-23 and 9-13 weeks, respectively, have been analyzed. Our results demonstrate that the chondrification of the pars basioccipitalis and exoccipitalis becomes observable at stage 19, and all future bones in the CVJ are in their cartilaginous form except for the future odontoid process. In addition, two chondrification centers appear for the body of the axis. From stage 21, the apical, alar, and transverse atlantal ligaments begin to acquire a ligamentous structure and the odontoid process initiates its chondrogenic phase. Stage 22 witnesses the first signs of the articular cavities of the atlanto-occipital joint, and by stage 23 all joints have cavities except for the transverse-odontoid joint, which will wait until week 9. In week 10, the ossification of the basilar part of the occipital bone begins, followed by the rest of the structures except for the odontoid process, which will start at week 13, thus completing the osteogenesis of all bones in the CVJ. The results of this study could help in establishing the anatomical basis of the normally functioning CVJ and for detecting its related pathologies, abnormalities, and malformations.

  5. Advances in the development of novel antioxidant therapies as an approach for fetal alcohol syndrome prevention.

    PubMed

    Joya, Xavier; Garcia-Algar, Oscar; Salat-Batlle, Judith; Pujades, Cristina; Vall, Oriol

    2015-03-01

    Ethanol is the most common human teratogen, and its consumption during pregnancy can produce a wide range of abnormalities in infants known as fetal alcohol spectrum disorder (FASD). The major characteristics of FASD can be divided into: (i) growth retardation, (ii) craniofacial abnormalities, and (iii) central nervous system (CNS) dysfunction. FASD is the most common cause of nongenetic mental retardation in Western countries. Although the underlying molecular mechanisms of ethanol neurotoxicity are not completely determined, the induction of oxidative stress is believed to be one central process linked to the development of the disease. Currently, there is no known effective strategy for prevention (other than alcohol avoidance) or treatment. In the present review we will provide the state of art in the evidence for the use of antioxidants as a potential therapeutic strategy for the treatment using whole-embryo and culture cells models of FASD. We conclude that the imbalance of the intracellular redox state contributes to the pathogenesis observed in FASD models, and we suggest that antioxidant therapy can be considered a new efficient strategy to mitigate the effects of prenatal ethanol exposure.

  6. Maternal-fetal unit interactions and eutherian neocortical development and evolution

    PubMed Central

    Montiel, Juan F.; Kaune, Heidy; Maliqueo, Manuel

    2013-01-01

    The conserved brain design that primates inherited from early mammals differs from the variable adult brain size and species-specific brain dominances observed across mammals. This variability relies on the emergence of specialized cerebral cortical regions and sub-compartments, triggering an increase in brain size, areal interconnectivity and histological complexity that ultimately lies on the activation of developmental programs. Structural placental features are not well correlated with brain enlargement; however, several endocrine pathways could be tuned with the activation of neuronal progenitors in the proliferative neocortical compartments. In this article, we reviewed some mechanisms of eutherians maternal–fetal unit interactions associated with brain development and evolution. We propose a hypothesis of brain evolution where proliferative compartments in primates become activated by “non-classical” endocrine placental signals participating in different steps of corticogenesis. Changes in the inner placental structure, along with placenta endocrine stimuli over the cortical proliferative activity would allow mammalian brain enlargement with a concomitant shorter gestation span, as an evolutionary strategy to escape from parent-offspring conflict. PMID:23882189

  7. Fetal testosterone and sex differences in typical social development and in autism.

    PubMed

    Knickmeyer, Rebecca Christine; Baron-Cohen, Simon

    2006-10-01

    Experiments in animals leave no doubt that androgens, including testosterone, produced by the testes in fetal and/or neonatal life act on the brain to induce sex differences in neural structure and function. In human beings, there is evidence supporting a female superiority in the ability to read nonverbal signals, specific language-related skills, and theory of mind. Even more striking than the sex differences seen in the typical population is the elevated occurrence of social and communicative difficulties in human males. One such condition, autism, occurs four times more frequently in boys than in girls. Recently, a novel theory known as the "extreme male brain" has been proposed. It suggests that the behaviors seen in autism are an exaggeration of typical sex differences and that exposure to high levels of prenatal testosterone might be a risk factor. In this article, we argue that prenatal and neonatal testosterone exposures are strong candidates for having a causal role in sexual dimorphism in human behavior, including social development, and as risk factors for conditions characterized by social impairments, particularly autism spectrum conditions.

  8. Tissue distribution of the laminin beta1 and beta2 chain during embryonic and fetal human development.

    PubMed

    Roediger, Matthias; Miosge, Nicolai; Gersdorff, Nikolaus

    2010-04-01

    Laminins are the major glycoproteins present in all basement membranes. Previously, we showed that perlecan is present during human development. Although an overview of mRNA-expression of the laminin beta1 and beta2 chains in various developing fetal organs is already available, a systematic localization of the laminin beta1 and beta2 chains on the protein level during embryonic and fetal human development is missing. Therefore, we studied the immunohistochemical expression and tissue distribution of the laminin beta1 and beta2 chains in various developing embryonic and fetal human organs between gestational weeks 8 and 12. The laminin beta1 chain was ubiquitously expressed in the basement membrane zones of the brain, ganglia, blood vessels, liver, kidney, skin, pancreas, intestine, heart and skeletal system. Furthermore, the laminin beta2 chain was present in the basement membrane zones of the brain, ganglia, skin, heart and skeletal system. The findings of this study support and expand upon the theory that these two laminin chains are important during human development.

  9. Leveraging Affective Learning for Developing Future Airmen

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2009-11-01

    sity, the United States Air Force, the Department of Defense, or any other US government agency. Cleared for public release: distribution unlimited...clude affective objectives in their lessons. A student’s affective state influences his or her learning pre- disposition, and educators should consider...but may not be possible for a large number of students or for dispersed learning activity. The ability to discern the affective state of students

  10. Lung-derived growth factors: possible paracrine effectors of fetal lung development

    SciTech Connect

    Montes, A.M.

    1985-01-01

    A potential role for paracrine secretions in lung organogenesis has been hypothesized (Alescio and Piperno, 1957). These studies present direct support for the paracrine model by demonstrating the presence of locally produced mitogenic/maturational factors in fetal rat lung tissue. Conditioned serum free medium (CSFM) from nineteen-day fetal rat lung cultures was shown to contain several bioactive peptides as detected by /sup 3/H-Thymidine incorporation into chick embryo and rat lung fibroblasts, as well as /sup 14/C-choline incorporation into surfactant in mixed cell cultures. Using ion-exchange chromatography and Sephadex gel filtration, a partially purified mitogen, 11-III, was obtained. The partially purified 11-III stimulates mitosis in chick embryo fibroblasts and post-natal rat lung fibroblasts. Multiplication in fetal rat lung fibroblasts cultures is stimulated only when these are pre-incubated with a competence factor or unprocessed CSFM. This suggests the existence of an endogenously produced competence factor important in the regulation of fetal lung growth. Preparation 11-III does not possess surfactant stimulating activity as assessed by /sup 3/H-choline incorporation into lipids in predominantly type-II cell cultures. These data demonstrate the presence of a maturational/mitogenic factor, influencing type-II mixed cell cultures. In addition, 11-III had been shown to play an autocrine role stimulating the proliferation of fetal lung fibroblasts. Finally, these data suggest the existence of a local produced competence factor.

  11. CpG sites with continuously increasing or decreasing methylation from early to late human fetal brain development.

    PubMed

    Schneider, Eberhard; Dittrich, Marcus; Böck, Julia; Nanda, Indrajit; Müller, Tobias; Seidmann, Larissa; Tralau, Tim; Galetzka, Danuta; El Hajj, Nady; Haaf, Thomas

    2016-10-30

    Normal human brain development is dependent on highly dynamic epigenetic processes for spatial and temporal gene regulation. Recent work identified wide-spread changes in DNA methylation during fetal brain development. We profiled CpG methylation in frontal cortex of 27 fetuses from gestational weeks 12-42, using Illumina 450K methylation arrays. Sites showing genome-wide significant correlation with gestational age were compared to a publicly available data set from gestational weeks 3-26. Altogether, we identified 2016 matching developmentally regulated differentially methylated positions (m-dDMPs): 1767m-dDMPs were hypermethylated and 1149 hypomethylated during fetal development. M-dDMPs are underrepresented in CpG islands and gene promoters, and enriched in gene bodies. They appear to cluster in certain chromosome regions. M-dDMPs are significantly enriched in autism-associated genes and CpGs. Our results promote the idea that reduced methylation dynamics during fetal brain development may predispose to autism. In addition, m-dDMPs are enriched in genes with human-specific brain expression patterns and/or histone modifications. Collectively, we defined a subset of dDMPs exhibiting constant methylation changes from early to late pregnancy. The same epigenetic mechanisms involving methylation changes in cis-regulatory regions may have been adopted for human brain evolution and ontogeny.

  12. Cadmium affects retinogenesis during zebrafish embryonic development

    SciTech Connect

    Hen Chow, Elly Suk; Yu Hui, Michelle Nga; Cheng, Chi Wa; Cheng, Shuk Han

    2009-02-15

    Ocular malformations are commonly observed in embryos of aquatic species after exposure to toxicants. Using zebrafish embryos as the model organism, we showed that cadmium exposure from sphere stage (4 hpf) to end of segmentation stage (24 hpf) induced microphthalmia in cadmium-treated embryos. Embryos with eye defects were then assessed for visual abilities. Cadmium-exposed embryos were behaviorally blind, showing hyperpigmentation and loss of camouflage response to light. We investigated the cellular basis of the formation of the small eyes phenotype and the induction of blindness by studying retina development and retinotectal projections. Retinal progenitors were found in cadmium-treated embryos albeit in smaller numbers. The number of retinal ganglion cells (RGC), the first class of retinal cells to differentiate during retinogenesis, was reduced, while photoreceptor cells, the last batch of retinal neurons to differentiate, were absent. Cadmium also affected the propagation of neurons in neurogenic waves. The neurons remained in the ventronasal area and failed to spread across the retina. Drastically reduced RGC axons and disrupted optic stalk showed that the optic nerves did not extend from the retina beyond the chiasm into the tectum. Our data suggested that impairment in neuronal differentiation of the retina, disruption in RGC axon formation and absence of cone photoreceptors were the causes of microphthalmia and visual impairment in cadmium-treated embryos.

  13. Development of an assay for a biomarker of pregnancy and early fetal loss

    SciTech Connect

    Canfield, R.E.; O'Connor, J.F.; Birken, S.; Krichevsky, A.; Wilcox, A.J.

    1987-10-01

    Human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG) is a glycoprotein hormone, secreted by the syncytiotrophoblast cells of the fertilized ovum, that enters the maternal circulation at the time of endometrial implantation. It is composed of two nonidentical subunits; ..cap alpha.. and ..beta.., with molecular weights of 14 kD and 23 kD, respectively. Human chorionic gonadotropin binds to the same receptor as hLH and displays the same biological response, namely, to stimulate the declining function of the corpus luteum to produce progestins and estrogen late in the menstrual cycle. The differences in the structures of hCG and hLH have been exploited to develop antibodies that can measure hCG specifically in the presence of hLH. Two-site antibody binding assays have been developed, based on a surface immunological concept of hCG epitopes, that involve four distinct regions to which antibodies against hCG can bind simultaneously. Antibody cooperative effects, in conjunction with kinetic advantages derived from the concentration factors by use of the sandwich assay technique (immunoradiometric assay, IRMA), have enabled development of extremely sensitive and specific measurement protocols for urinary hCG. The assay described herein permits the detection of pregnancy on an average 25.4 days after the first day of the preceding menses, as opposed to 29.5 days for conventional radioimmunoassay techniques. In addition, the greater sensitivity and specificity of this assay method has permitted the detection of episodes of fetal loss not detected by radioimmunoassay of urine specimens. A large scale epidemiological study is in progress using this assay technique as a way to identify pregnancies that are lost before becoming clinically apparent.

  14. Developmental aspects of the rat brain insulin receptor: loss of sialic acid and fluctuation in number characterize fetal development

    SciTech Connect

    Brennan, W.A. Jr.

    1988-06-01

    In this study, I have investigated the structure of the rat brain insulin receptor during fetal development. There is a progressive decrease in the apparent molecular size of the brain alpha-subunit during development: 130K on day 16 of gestation, 126K at birth, and 120K in the adult. Glycosylation was investigated as a possible reason for the observed differences in the alpha-subunit molecular size. The results show that the developmental decrease in the brain alpha-subunit apparent molecular size is due to a parallel decrease in sialic acid content. This was further confirmed by measuring the retention of autophosphorylated insulin receptors on wheat germ agglutinin (WGA)-Sepharose. An inverse correlation between developmental age and retention of /sup 32/P-labeled insulin receptors on the lectin column was observed. Insulin binding increases 6-fold between 16 and 20 days of gestation (61 +/- 25 (+/- SE) fmol/mg protein and 364 +/- 42 fmol/mg, respectively). Thereafter, binding in brain membranes decreases to 150 +/- 20 fmol/mg by 2 days after birth, then reaches the adult level of 63 +/- 15 fmol/mg. In addition, the degree of insulin-stimulated autophosphorylation closely parallels the developmental changes in insulin binding. Between 16 and 20 days of fetal life, insulin-stimulated phosphorylation of the beta-subunit increases 6-fold. Thereafter, the extent of phosphorylation decreases rapidly, reaching adult values identical with those in 16-day-old fetal brain. These results suggest that the embryonic brain possesses competent insulin receptors whose expression changes markedly during fetal development. This information should be important in defining the role of insulin in the developing nervous system.

  15. Asymmetry of Radial and Symmetry of Tangential Neuronal Migration Pathways in Developing Human Fetal Brains.

    PubMed

    Miyazaki, Yuta; Song, Jae W; Takahashi, Emi

    2016-01-01

    The radial and tangential neural migration pathways are two major neuronal migration streams in humans that are critical during corticogenesis. Corticogenesis is a complex process of neuronal proliferation that is followed by neuronal migration and the formation of axonal connections. Existing histological assessments of these two neuronal migration pathways have limitations inherent to microscopic studies and are confined to small anatomic regions of interest (ROIs). Thus, little evidence is available about their three-dimensional (3-D) fiber pathways and development throughout the entire brain. In this study, we imaged and analyzed radial and tangential migration pathways in the whole human brain using high-angular resolution diffusion MR imaging (HARDI) tractography. We imaged ten fixed, postmortem fetal (17 gestational weeks (GW), 18 GW, 19 GW, three 20 GW, three 21 GW and 22 GW) and eight in vivo newborn (two 30 GW, 34 GW, 35 GW and four 40 GW) brains with no neurological/pathological conditions. We statistically compared the volume of the left and right radial and tangential migration pathways, and the volume of the radial migration pathways of the anterior and posterior regions of the brain. In specimens 22 GW or younger, the volume of radial migration pathways of the left hemisphere was significantly larger than that of the right hemisphere. The volume of posterior radial migration pathways was also larger when compared to the anterior pathways in specimens 22 GW or younger. In contrast, no significant differences were observed in the radial migration pathways of brains older than 22 GW. Moreover, our study did not identify any significant differences in volumetric laterality in the tangential migration pathways. These results suggest that these two neuronal migration pathways develop and regress differently, and radial neuronal migration varies regionally based on hemispheric and anterior-posterior laterality, potentially explaining regional differences in

  16. Early Detection of Fetal Malformation, a Long Distance Yet to Cover! Present Status and Potential of First Trimester Ultrasonography in Detection of Fetal Congenital Malformation in a Developing Country: Experience at a Tertiary Care Centre in India

    PubMed Central

    Kashyap, Namrata; Pradhan, Mandakini; Singh, Neeta; Yadav, Sangeeta

    2015-01-01

    Background. Early detection of malformation is tremendously improved with improvement in imaging technology. Yet in a developing country like India majority of pregnant women are not privileged to get timely diagnosis. Aims and Objectives. To assess the present status and potential of first trimester ultrasonography in detection of fetal congenital structural malformations. Methodology. This was a retrospective observational study conducted at Sanjay Gandhi Postgraduate Institute of Medical Sciences. All pregnant women had anomaly scan and women with fetal structural malformations were included. Results. Out of 4080 pregnant women undergoing ultrasound, 312 (7.6%) had fetal structural malformation. Out of 139 patients who were diagnosed after 20 weeks, 47 (33.8%) had fetal structural anomalies which could have been diagnosed before 12 weeks and 92 (66.1%) had fetal malformations which could have been diagnosed between 12 and 20 weeks. Conclusion. The first trimester ultrasonography could have identified 50% of major structural defects compared to 1.6% in the present scenario. This focuses on the immense need of the hour to gear up for early diagnosis and timely intervention in the field of prenatal detection of congenital malformation. PMID:26759727

  17. Mature Surfactant Protein-B Expression by Immunohistochemistry as a Marker for Surfactant System Development in the Fetal Sheep Lung.

    PubMed

    Lock, Mitchell C; McGillick, Erin V; Orgeig, Sandra; Zhang, Song; McMillen, I Caroline; Morrison, Janna L

    2015-11-01

    Evaluation of the number of type II alveolar epithelial cells (AECs) is an important measure of the lung's ability to produce surfactant. Immunohistochemical staining of these cells in lung tissue commonly uses antibodies directed against mature surfactant protein (SP)-C, which is regarded as a reliable SP marker of type II AECs in rodents. There has been no study demonstrating reliable markers for surfactant system maturation by immunohistochemistry in the fetal sheep lung despite being widely used as a model to study lung development. Here we examine staining of a panel of surfactant pro-proteins (pro-SP-B and pro-SP-C) and mature proteins (SP-B and SP-C) in the fetal sheep lung during late gestation in the saccular/alveolar phase of development (120, 130, and 140 days), with term being 150 ± 3 days, to identify the most reliable marker of surfactant producing cells in this species. Results from this study indicate that during late gestation, use of anti-SP-B antibodies in the sheep lung yields significantly higher cell counts in the alveolar epithelium than SP-C antibodies. Furthermore, this study highlights that mature SP-B antibodies are more reliable markers than SP-C antibodies to evaluate surfactant maturation in the fetal sheep lung by immunohistochemistry.

  18. Perfluoroalkyl chemicals and human fetal development: an epidemiologic review with clinical and toxicological perspectives.

    PubMed

    Olsen, Geary W; Butenhoff, John L; Zobel, Larry R

    2009-06-01

    Epidemiologists began to focus on human developmental outcomes with perfluorooctanesulfonate (PFOS) and perfluorooctanoate (PFOA) as a consequence of dose-dependent developmental toxicological studies that reported effects of lowered birth weight, increased postnatal mortality, and decreased postnatal growth in surviving rats and mice. Contributing to the epidemiologic interest was the widespread presence of PFOS and PFOA in the general population, lengthy serum elimination half-lives in humans, and the placental transfer of PFOS and PFOA in humans that was established via measurement of paired maternal and umbilical cord blood samples. The purpose of this paper is to qualitatively review the published epidemiologic literature as it pertains to the potential association of exposure to PFOS and PFOA with human fetal development. The published research has focused on birth weight and other measurements that reflect human fetal development. A total of eight epidemiologic studies were reviewed that focused on six general (non-occupational) and two occupational populations. Of the six general population studies, five examined associations between birth weight and other anthropometric measurements in relation to maternal blood and/or umbilical cord concentrations of PFOS and PFOA. In the sixth study, three geographical areas in Washington County, Ohio, were categorized by their public drinking water sources that contained PFOA that had resulted in higher serum concentrations than observed in other general population studies. The occupational studies focused on a perfluorochemical manufacturing site (Decatur, AL) with exposure categorized from work history and biomonitoring data. There were inconsistent associations reported for several different birth outcomes, including birth weight, birth length, head circumference, and ponderal index, among the five general population studies that measured PFOS and PFOA in the study subjects. No association with birth weight or

  19. Embryo development, fetal growth and postnatal phenotype of eGFP lambs generated by lentiviral transgenesis.

    PubMed

    Crispo, M; Vilariño, M; dos Santos-Neto, P C; Núñez-Olivera, R; Cuadro, F; Barrera, N; Mulet, A P; Nguyen, T H; Anegón, I; Menchaca, A

    2015-02-01

    Lentiviral technology has been recently proposed to generate transgenic farm animals more efficiently and easier than traditional techniques. The objective was to evaluate several parameters of lambs obtained by lentiviral transgenesis in comparison with non-transgenic counterparts. In vitro produced embryos were microinjected (TG group) at two-cell stage with a lentiviral construct containing enhanced green fluorescent protein (eGFP) gene, while embryos produced by in vitro fertilization (IVF group) or intrauterine insemination (IUI group) were not microinjected. Microinjection technique efficiently generated eight-cell transgenic embryos (97.4%; 114/117). Development rate on day 5 after fertilization was similar for TG (39.3%, 46/117) and IVF embryos (39.6%, 44/111). Pregnancy rate was detected in 50.0% (6/12) of recipient ewes with TG embryos, in 46.7% (7/15) with IVF embryos, and in 65.0% (13/20) of IUI ewes (P = NS). Nine lambs were born in TG group, six lambs in IVF group, and 16 lambs in IUI group. All TG lambs (9/9) were GFP positive to real-time PCR and eight (88.9%) showed a strong and evident GFP expression in mucosae, eyes and keratin tissues. Fetal growth monitored every 15 day by ultrasonography did not show significant differences. Transgenic lambs neither differ in morphometric variables in comparison with non transgenic IVF lambs within 3 months after birth. Transmission of the transgene to the progeny was observed in green fluorescent embryos produced by IVF using semen from the TG founder lambs. In conclusion, this study demonstrates the high efficiency of lentiviral technology to produce transgenic sheep, with no clinic differences in comparison with non transgenic lambs.

  20. Fetal development of the elastic-fiber-mediated enthesis in the human middle ear.

    PubMed

    Takanashi, Yoshitaka; Shibata, Shunichi; Katori, Yukio; Murakami, Gen; Abe, Shinichi; Rodríguez-Vázquez, Jose Francisco; Kawase, Tetsuaki

    2013-10-01

    In the human middle ear, the annular ligament of the incudostapedial joint and the insertions of the tensor tympani and stapedius muscles contain abundant elastic fibers; i.e., the elastic-fiber-mediated entheses. Hyaluronan also coexists with the elastic fibers. In the present study using immunohistochemistry, we demonstrated the distribution of elastin not only in the incudostapedial joint but also in the other two joints of the middle ear in adults and fetuses. In adults, the expression of elastin did not extend out of the annular ligament composed of mature elastic fibers but clearly overlapped with it. Electron microscopic observations of the annular ligament demonstrated a few microfibrils along the elastic fibers. Thus, in contrast to the vocal cord, the middle ear entheses seemed not to contain elaunin and oxytalan fibers. In mid-term fetuses (at approximately 15-16 weeks of gestation) before opening of the external acoustic meatus, the incudostapedial joint showed abundant elastic fibers, but the incudomalleolar and stapediovestibular joints did not. At this stage, hyaluronan was not colocalized, but distributed diffusely in loose mesenchymal tissues surrounding the ear ossicles. Therefore, fetal development of elastin and elastic fibers in the middle ear entheses is unlikely to require acoustic oscillation. In late-stage fetuses (25-30 weeks), whose ear ossicles were almost the same size as those in adults, we observed bundling and branching of elastic fibers. However, hyaluronan expression was not as strong as in adults. Colocalization between elastic fibers and hyaluronan appeared to be a result of postnatal maturation of the entheses.

  1. PS2-19: Developing an Automated Surveillance for Fetal Alcohol Syndrome Using Electronic Medical Records

    PubMed Central

    Hansen, Craig; Adams, Marvin

    2012-01-01

    Background/Aims Prenatal alcohol exposure is the leading preventable cause of birth defects and developmental disabilities. The full diagnosis of Fetal alcohol syndrome (FAS) requires assessment of: prenatal exposure to alcohol, facial dysmorphology by a geneticist, restricted growth parameters, and central nervous system (CNS) abnormalities as denoted by small head circumference/structural anomalies, neurological deficits, and/or significant functional deficits. Using integrated information available at one source, we assessed the feasibility of developing an FAS surveillance system using the Kaiser Permanente Georgia (KPGA) Health Plan EMR. Methods Using EMRs, we extracted relevant information on the three main areas of FAS case definition (facial features, restricted growth, and CNS abnormalities). This was done among children up to the age of 10 years at the time of the diagnosis (including birth). Due to lack of ICD-9 codes for many of the facial features, we scanned the physician progress notes for relevant terms. These data were synthesized and applied to the FAS case definition algorithm. Results (at the time of the submission – these results may change with further analyses):Overall, preliminary analyses showed that 23,678 children met either the criteria for growth restriction (n=5,052) or CNS abnormalities (17,296). Of these children, 1,330 met the criteria for both growth restriction and CNS abnormalities. An algorithm is to conduct text string searches for facial dysmorphic features within physician progress notes among these 1,330 children is under development and results will be presented at the HMORN conference. Results on linking these children to mothers, along with alcohol use during pregnancy will also be presented. Discussion Development of a surveillance system for FAS using EMRs is challenging. Information on two (CNS and growth) of the three main criteria can be extracted to create a pool of potential FAS cases, while information on

  2. Sex Moderates Associations between Prenatal Glucocorticoid Exposure and Human Fetal Neurological Development

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Glynn, Laura M.; Sandman, Curt A.

    2012-01-01

    Maternal cortisol levels (at 15, 19, 25, 31 and 37 weeks' gestation) and fetal movement response to vibroacoustic stimulation (VAS; at 25, 31 and 37 weeks) were assessed in 190 mother-fetus pairs. Fetuses showed a response to the VAS at 25 weeks and there was evidence of increasing maturation in the response at 31 and 37 weeks. Early elevations in…

  3. In utero physiology: role in nutrient delivery and fetal development for calcium, phosphorus, and vitamin D

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Only limited aspects of the transfer of calcium across the placenta to the fetus are known. Clinical outcome studies suggest that bone mineral mass in newborn infants is related to maternal size and dairy intake. Available data indicate that vitamin D deficiency may also limit in utero fetal bone mi...

  4. [Fetal magnetocardiography].

    PubMed

    Hosono, Takayoshi

    2006-05-01

    The electrical activities of the heart causes weak changes of the magnetic field, which can be recorded as magnetocardiogram (MCG). Fetal cardiac magnetic activity is measured in the order of less than 10 pT. An advance of the novel technology of a superconducting quantum interference device enabled the first recording of fetal MCG (FMCG) in 1974. In Japan, FMCG instrument (MC6400, Hitachi High-Technologies Ltd) was approved as a diagnostic tool by Japanese Government in 2003 owing to the cooperative studies of Tsukuba University, National Cardiovascular Center and Hitachi Ltd. FMCG offers similar information to a fetal electrocardiogram, which is difficult to be recorded because the fetal skin is covered with fatty caseous vernix of weak electrical conductivity in the second and third trimester of pregnancy. Magnetic flux can pass through the fat layer, and thus FMCG can measure the electrical activity of the fetal heart. Besides FMCG has far higher resolutions in time domain than echocardiography does. The amplitude of FMCG signals depends on the size of fetal heart and the distance between the sensors and the fetal heart. The amplitudes of the QRS, P and T waves increases with gestational age. Since the amplitudes of P and T waves are often weak, averaging of FMCG signals is needed to improve the signal-to-noise ratio. Current-arrow map is a useful mapping technique even in FMCG. FMCG has been applied in the prenatal diagnosis of fetal arrhythmias such as bradyarrhythmia (atrioventricular block, long QT syndrome, etc), tachyarrhythmia (supraventricular tachycardia, atrial flutter, atrial fibrillation and WPW syndrome, etc) and extrasystoles. Fetal cardiomegaly with myocardial abnormalities can be also diagnosed by FMCG. Applications of FMCG for fetal heart rate monitoring using beat-to-beat variability have been also studied to obtain better information on fetal well-beings.

  5. Fetal akinesia/hypokinesia sequence: prenatal diagnosis and intra-familial variability.

    PubMed

    Bacino, C A; Platt, L D; Garber, A; Carlson, D; Pepkowitz, S; Lachman, R S; Sharony, R; Rimoin, D L; Graham, J M

    1993-11-01

    Intrauterine fetal movement plays a key role in normal embryonic and fetal development (Moessinger, 1983). When movement is absent or decreased, abnormal development takes place which can be appreciated in newborns and/or fetuses with the fetal akinesia/hypokinesia sequence. This sequence is caused by a number of heterogeneous entities which result in decreased fetal movements by the action of intrinsic or extrinsic factors. Prenatal diagnosis of the akinesia/hypokinesia sequence may be possible during the second trimester through the use of real-time ultrasonographic evaluation of fetal movement. We report a family with three consecutive affected pregnancies in which the prenatal presentation of this sequence varied. Based on the phenotypic findings of the three affected fetuses, we believe that although they superficially resemble those features found in the New-Laxova syndrome, they are probably affected with a distinctly different lethal form of akinesia/hypokinesia transmitted in an autosomal recessive fashion.

  6. Fetal pain.

    PubMed

    Rokyta, Richard

    2008-12-01

    The fetus reacts to nociceptive stimulations through different motor, autonomic, vegetative, hormonal, and metabolic changes relatively early in the gestation period. With respect to the fact that the modulatory system does not yet exist, the first reactions are purely reflexive and without connection to the type of stimulus. While the fetal nervous system is able to react through protective reflexes to potentially harmful stimuli, there is no accurate evidence concerning pain sensations in this early period. Cortical processes occur only after thalamocortical connections and pathways have been completed at the 26th gestational week. Harmful (painful) stimuli, especially in fetuses have an adverse effect on the development of humans regardless of the processes in brain. Moreover, pain activates a number of subcortical mechanisms and a wide spectrum of stress responses influence the maturation of thalamocortical pathways and other cortical activation which are very important in pain processing.

  7. Advances in fetal surgery

    PubMed Central

    Maselli, Kathryn M.

    2016-01-01

    Historically, the gold standard for the treatment of congenital malformations has been planned delivery at tertiary care center with attempted post-natal repair or amelioration of the lesion. Over the last few decades however, rapid advances in imaging and instrumentation technology combined with superior knowledge of fetal pathophysiology has led to the development of novel intrauterine interventions for most common fetal anomalies. Great success has already been seen the treatment of previous devastating anomalies such as myelomeningocele (MMC), congenital cystic malformations of the lung, twin-twin transfusion, and sacrococcygeal teratomas. Although still limited, these innovative techniques have unique potential to improve outcomes in the most devastating fetal anomalies. PMID:27867946

  8. Prenatal Intestinal Obstruction Affects the Myenteric Plexus and Causes Functional Bowel Impairment in Fetal Rat Experimental Model of Intestinal Atresia

    PubMed Central

    Khen-Dunlop, Naziha; Sarnacki, Sabine; Victor, Anais; Grosos, Celine; Menard, Sandrine; Soret, Rodolphe; Goudin, Nicolas; Pousset, Maud; Sauvat, Frederique; Revillon, Yann; Cerf-Bensussan, Nadine; Neunlist, Michel

    2013-01-01

    Background Intestinal atresia is a rare congenital disorder with an incidence of 3/10 000 birth. About one-third of patients have severe intestinal dysfunction after surgical repair. We examined whether prenatal gastrointestinal obstruction might effect on the myenteric plexus and account for subsequent functional disorders. Methodology/Principal Findings We studied a rat model of surgically induced antenatal atresia, comparing intestinal samples from both sides of the obstruction and with healthy rat pups controls. Whole-mount preparations of the myenteric plexus were stained for choline acetyltransferase (ChAT) and nitric oxide synthase (nNOS). Quantitative reverse transcription PCR was used to analyze mRNAs for inflammatory markers. Functional motility and permeability analyses were performed in vitro. Phenotypic studies were also performed in 8 newborns with intestinal atresia. In the experimental model, the proportion of nNOS-immunoreactive neurons was similar in proximal and distal segments (6.7±4.6% vs 5.6±4.2%, p = 0.25), but proximal segments contained a higher proportion of ChAT-immunoreactive neurons (13.2±6.2% vs 7.5±4.3%, p = 0.005). Phenotypic changes were associated with a 100-fold lower concentration-dependent contractile response to carbachol and a 1.6-fold higher EFS-induced contractile response in proximal compared to distal segments. Transcellular (p = 0.002) but not paracellular permeability was increased. Comparison with controls showed that modifications involved not only proximal but also distal segments. Phenotypic studies in human atresia confirmed the changes in ChAT expression. Conclusion Experimental atresia in fetal rat induces differential myenteric plexus phenotypical as well as functional changes (motility and permeability) between the two sides of the obstruction. Delineating these changes might help to identify markers predictive of motility dysfunction and to define guidelines for post-surgical care. PMID:23667464

  9. Fetal Exposure of Rhesus Macaques to Bisphenol A Alters Cellular Development of the Conducting Airway by Changing Epithelial Secretory Product Expression

    PubMed Central

    Murphy, Shannon R.; Boetticher, Miriam V.; VandeVoort, Catherine A.

    2013-01-01

    Background: Bisphenol A (BPA) exposure early in life results in organizational changes in reproductive organs, but the effect of BPA on conducting airway cellular maturation has not been studied. Late gestation is characterized by active differentiation of secretory cells in the lung epithelium. Objective: We evaluated the hypothesis that BPA exposure disrupts epithelial secretory cell development in the fetal conducting airway of the rhesus macaque. Methods: We exposed animals to BPA during either the second (early term) or the third (late term) trimester. There were four treatment groups: a) sham control early term, b) sham control late term, c) BPA early term (BPA-early), and d) BPA late term (BPA-late). Because cellular maturation occurs nonuniformly in the lung, we defined mRNA and protein expression by airway level using microdissection. Results: BPA exposure of the dam during late term significantly accelerated secretory cell maturation in the proximal airways of the fetus; both Clara cell secretory protein (CCSP) and MUC5AC/5B mRNA and protein expression increased. Conclusions: BPA exposure during late gestation accelerates secretory cell maturation in the proximal conducting airways. We identified a critical window of fetal susceptibility for BPA effects on lung epithelial cell maturation in the third trimester. This is of environmental health importance because increases in airway mucins are hallmarks of a number of childhood lung diseases that may be affected by BPA exposure. PMID:23757601

  10. Fetal ultrasonography.

    PubMed Central

    Garmel, S H; D'Alton, M E

    1993-01-01

    Since its introduction in the 1950s, ultrasonography in pregnancy has been helpful in determining gestational age, detecting multiple pregnancies, locating placentas, diagnosing fetal anomalies, evaluating fetal well-being, and guiding obstetricians with in utero treatment. We review current standards and controversies regarding the indications, safety, accuracy, and limitations of ultrasonography in pregnancy. Images PMID:8236969

  11. Fetal Circulation

    MedlinePlus

    ... Echocardiography/Your Unborn Baby's Heart - Fetal Echocardiogram Test - Detection of a Heart Defect - Fetal Circulation • Care & Treatment • Tools & Resources Popular Articles 1 Understanding Blood Pressure Readings 2 Sodium and Salt 3 Target Heart Rates 4 Heart Attack Symptoms in Women ...

  12. Fetal Abuse.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kent, Lindsey; And Others

    1997-01-01

    Five cases of fetal abuse by mothers suffering from depression are discussed. Four of the women had unplanned pregnancies and had considered termination of the pregnancy. Other factors associated with fetal abuse include pregnancy denial, pregnancy ambivalence, previous postpartum depression, and difficulties in relationships. Vigilance for…

  13. An immunocytochemical study of the germinal layer vasculature in the developing fetal brain using Ulex europaeus 1 lectin.

    PubMed

    Gould, S J; Howard, S

    1988-10-01

    The characteristics of the germinal matrix vasculature were studied in the developing fetal brain using immunocytochemical methods. A preliminary comparative immunocytochemical study was made on six fetal brains to compare endothelial staining by Ulex europaeus I lectin with that of antibody to Factor VIII related antigen. Ulex was found to stain germinal layer vessels better than Factor VIII related antigen. Subsequently, the germinal layers of a further 15 fetal and preterm infant brains ranging from 13 to 35 weeks' gestation were stained with Ulex europaeus I to demonstrate the vasculature. With increasing gestation, there was a gradual increase in vessel density, particularly of capillaries. This was not a uniform process. A plexus of capillaries was prominent immediately beneath the ependyma while the more central parts of the germinal matrix contained fewer, but often larger diameter, vessels. The variation in vessel density which was a feature of the later gestation brains may have implications for local blood flow and may be a factor in haemorrhage at this site.

  14. Acquisition of innate-like microbial reactivity in mucosal tissues during human fetal MAIT-cell development

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Leeansyah, Edwin; Loh, Liyen; Nixon, Douglas F.; Sandberg, Johan K.

    2014-01-01

    Innate-like, evolutionarily conserved MR1-restricted mucosa-associated invariant T (MAIT) cells represent a large antimicrobial T-cell subset in humans. Here, we investigate the development of these cells in second trimester human fetal tissues. MAIT cells are rare and immature in the fetal thymus, spleen and mesenteric lymph nodes. In contrast, mature IL-18Rα+ CD8αα MAIT cells are enriched in the fetal small intestine, liver and lung. Independently of localization, MAIT cells express CD127 and Ki67 in vivo and readily proliferate in response to Escherichia coli in vitro. Maturation is accompanied by the gradual post-thymic acquisition of the PLZF transcription factor and the ability to produce IFNγ and IL-22 in response to bacteria in mucosa. Thus, MAIT cells acquire innate-like antimicrobial responsiveness in mucosa before exposure to environmental microbes and the commensal microflora. Establishment of this arm of immunity before birth may help protect the newborn from a range of pathogenic microbes.

  15. Maternal dietary carbohydrate restriction and mild-to-moderate exercise during pregnancy modify aspects of fetal development in rats.

    PubMed

    Cobrin, M; Koski, K G

    1995-06-01

    To determine whether acute bouts of exercise during pregnancy would predispose the fetus to increased risk if maternal dietary carbohydrate were restricted, untrained pregnant rats were randomly assigned to a 0% (low), 12% (moderate) or 60% (high) glucose diet, and either rested or exercised daily for 20 min from d 16 to term on a rodent treadmill at a mild (15.5 m/min) or moderate (24.3 m/min) intensity. A 3 x 3 nested factorial model with and without food intake as a covariate was employed. Both greater exercise intensity and the lower levels of dietary carbohydrate independently decreased term maternal liver and plantaris glycogen concentrations and increased plasma lactate concentrations. However, significant differences due to exercise disappeared (except for plasma lactate) with food intake controlled for in the model, indicating that energy deficits modulated these exercise effects. In contrast, for the offspring, when food intake was controlled for, a restricted level of maternal dietary carbohydrate significantly lowered fetal weight, plasma glucose and insulin concentrations and liver glycogen concentrations measured at term. Exercise alone did not reduce mean fetal weight if nested weights within a litter were used in the statistical analysis. Mild to moderate maternal exercise lowered only fetal plasma glucose concentrations and only if maternal food intake was not controlled for. These results indicate that acute exercise during pregnancy can have detrimental effects on fetal development only if dietary glucose is severely restricted. Otherwise, adequate glucose and energy in the maternal diet in untrained pregnant rats during repeated bouts of acute exercise seem to protect the fetus.

  16. Fetal liver blood flow distribution: role in human developmental strategy to prioritize fat deposition versus brain development.

    PubMed

    Godfrey, Keith M; Haugen, Guttorm; Kiserud, Torvid; Inskip, Hazel M; Cooper, Cyrus; Harvey, Nicholas C W; Crozier, Sarah R; Robinson, Sian M; Davies, Lucy; Hanson, Mark A

    2012-01-01

    Among primates, human neonates have the largest brains but also the highest proportion of body fat. If placental nutrient supply is limited, the fetus faces a dilemma: should resources be allocated to brain growth, or to fat deposition for use as a potential postnatal energy reserve? We hypothesised that resolving this dilemma operates at the level of umbilical blood distribution entering the fetal liver. In 381 uncomplicated pregnancies in third trimester, we measured blood flow perfusing the fetal liver, or bypassing it via the ductus venosus to supply the brain and heart using ultrasound techniques. Across the range of fetal growth and independent of the mother's adiposity and parity, greater liver blood flow was associated with greater offspring fat mass measured by dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry, both in the infant at birth (r = 0.43, P<0.001) and at age 4 years (r = 0.16, P = 0.02). In contrast, smaller placentas less able to meet fetal demand for essential nutrients were associated with a brain-sparing flow pattern (r = 0.17, p = 0.02). This flow pattern was also associated with a higher degree of shunting through ductus venosus (P = 0.04). We propose that humans evolved a developmental strategy to prioritize nutrient allocation for prenatal fat deposition when the supply of conditionally essential nutrients requiring hepatic inter-conversion is limited, switching resource allocation to favour the brain if the supply of essential nutrients is limited. Facilitated placental transfer mechanisms for glucose and other nutrients evolved in environments less affluent than those now prevalent in developed populations, and we propose that in circumstances of maternal adiposity and nutrient excess these mechanisms now also lead to prenatal fat deposition. Prenatal developmental influences play important roles in the human propensity to deposit fat.

  17. The fetal sheep lung does not respond to cortisol infusion during the late canalicular phase of development

    PubMed Central

    McGillick, Erin V; Orgeig, Sandra; McMillen, I Caroline; Morrison, Janna L

    2013-01-01

    The prepartum surge in plasma cortisol concentrations in humans and sheep promotes fetal lung and surfactant system maturation in the support of air breathing after birth. This physiological process has been used to enhance lung maturation in the preterm fetus using maternal administration of betamethasone in the clinical setting in fetuses as young as 24 weeks gestation (term = 40 weeks). Here, we have investigated the impact of fetal intravenous cortisol infusion during the canalicular phase of lung development (from 109- to 116-days gestation, term = 150 ± 3 days) on the expression of genes regulating glucocorticoid (GC) activity, lung liquid reabsorption, and surfactant maturation in the very preterm sheep fetus and compared this to their expression near term. Cortisol infusion had no impact on mRNA expression of the corticosteroid receptors (GC receptor and mineralocorticoid receptor) or HSD11B-2, however, there was increased expression of HSD11B-1 in the fetal lung. Despite this, cortisol infusion had no effect on the expression of genes involved in lung sodium (epithelial sodium channel -α, -β, or -γ subunits and sodium–potassium ATPase-β1 subunit) or water (aquaporin 1, 3, and 5) reabsorption when compared to the level of expression during exposure to the normal prepartum cortisol surge. Furthermore, in comparison to late gestation, cortisol infusion does not increase mRNA expression of surfactant proteins (SFTP-A, -B, and -C) or the number of SFTP-B-positive cells present in the alveolar epithelium, the cells that produce pulmonary surfactant. These data suggest that there may be an age before which the lung is unable to respond biochemically to an increase in fetal plasma cortisol concentrations. PMID:24400136

  18. Development of peptide-containing nerves in the human fetal prostate gland.

    PubMed Central

    Jen, P Y; Dixon, J S

    1995-01-01

    Immunohistochemical methods were used to study the developing peptidergic innervation of the human fetal prostate gland in a series of specimens ranging in gestational age from 13 to 30 wk. The overall innervation of each specimen was visualised using protein gene product 9.5 (PGP), a general nerve marker. The onset and development of specific neuropeptide-containing subpopulations were investigated using antisera to neuropeptide Y (NPY), vasoactive intestinal peptide (VIP), substance P (SP), calcitonin gene-related peptide (CGRP), bombesin (BOM), somatostatin (SOM), leu-enkephalin (l-ENK) and met-enkephalin (m-ENK). In addition the occurrence and distribution of presumptive noradrenergic nerves was studied using antisera to dopamine-beta-hydroxylase (D beta H) and tyrosine hydroxylase (TH). At 13 wk numerous branching PGP-immunoreactive (-IR) nerves were observed in the capsule of the developing prostate gland and surrounding the preprostatic urethra but the remainder of the gland was devoid of nerves. The majority of nerves in the capsule contained D beta H and TH and were presumed to be noradrenergic in type while other nerves (in decreasing numbers) contained NPY, l-ENK, SP and CGRP. Nerves associated with the preprostatic urethra did not contain any of the neuropeptides under investigation. At 17 wk the density of nerves in the capsule had increased and occasional m-ENK-, VIP- and BOM-IR nerve fibres were also observed. In addition PGP, D beta H-, TH-, NPY- and l-ENK-IR nerves occurred in association with smooth muscle bundles which at 17 wk were present in the outer part of the gland. Occasional PGP-IR nerves were also present at the base of the epithelium forming some of the prostatic glands. At 23 wk some of the subepithelial nerves showed immunoreactivity for NPY, VIP or l-ENK. At 26 wk smooth muscle bundles occurred throughout the gland and were richly innervated by PGP, D beta H and TH-IR nerves while a less dense plexus was formed by NPY- and l

  19. Epigenetic control of fetal bone development through HoxA10 in the rat

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Epidemiological studies show that quality of nutrition during intrauterine and early postnatal life impact the risk of low bone mass and fracture later in life. Maternal consumption of high-fat diets has been demonstrated to affect health outcomes, such as: brain development; obesity; insulin resist...

  20. Effect of maternal obesity on fetal bone development in the rat

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Epidemiological studies show that quality of nutrition during intrauterine and postnatal early life impact the risk of low bone mass and fracture later in life. Maternal consumption of high-fat diets has been demonstrated to affect health outcomes, such as: brain development; obesity; insulin resist...

  1. Maternal Inflammation Disrupts Fetal Neurodevelopment via Increased Placental Output of Serotonin to the Fetal Brain

    PubMed Central

    Goeden, Nick; Velasquez, Juan; Arnold, Kathryn A.; Chan, Yen; Lund, Brett T.; Anderson, George M.

    2016-01-01

    Maternal inflammation during pregnancy affects placental function and is associated with increased risk of neurodevelopmental disorders in the offspring. The molecular mechanisms linking placental dysfunction to abnormal fetal neurodevelopment remain unclear. During typical development, serotonin (5-HT) synthesized in the placenta from maternal l-tryptophan (TRP) reaches the fetal brain. There, 5-HT modulates critical neurodevelopmental processes. We investigated the effects of maternal inflammation triggered in midpregnancy in mice by the immunostimulant polyriboinosinic-polyribocytidylic acid [poly(I:C)] on TRP metabolism in the placenta and its impact on fetal neurodevelopment. We show that a moderate maternal immune challenge upregulates placental TRP conversion rapidly to 5-HT through successively transient increases in substrate availability and TRP hydroxylase (TPH) enzymatic activity, leading to accumulation of exogenous 5-HT and blunting of endogenous 5-HT axonal outgrowth specifically within the fetal forebrain. The pharmacological inhibition of TPH activity blocked these effects. These results establish altered placental TRP conversion to 5-HT as a new mechanism by which maternal inflammation disrupts 5-HT-dependent neurogenic processes during fetal neurodevelopment. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT The mechanisms linking maternal inflammation during pregnancy with increased risk of neurodevelopmental disorders in the offspring are poorly understood. In this study, we show that maternal inflammation in midpregnancy results in an upregulation of tryptophan conversion to serotonin (5-HT) within the placenta. Remarkably, this leads to exposure of the fetal forebrain to increased concentrations of this biogenic amine and to specific alterations of crucially important 5-HT-dependent neurogenic processes. More specifically, we found altered serotonergic axon growth resulting from increased 5-HT in the fetal forebrain. The data provide a new understanding of placental

  2. Variables Affecting Economic Development of Wind Energy

    SciTech Connect

    Lantz, E.; Tegen, S.

    2008-07-01

    NREL's JEDI Wind model performed an analysis of wind-power-related economic development drivers. Economic development benefits for wind and coal were estimated using NREL's JEDI Wind and JEDI Coal models.

  3. Cognition and Affect in Early Literacy Development.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    McNamee, Gillian D.; And Others

    1985-01-01

    Using Vygotsky's theory of development, explores the significance of storytelling and dramatization activities on the intellectual and emotional development of preschool children. Results indicate that dramatizing of children's stories enhances the storytelling of preschool children and, thus, influences their literacy development. (DST)

  4. Glucocorticoid-induced changes in glucocorticoid receptor mRNA and protein expression in the human placenta as a potential factor for altering fetal growth and development.

    PubMed

    Bivol, Svetlana; Owen, Suzzanne J; Rose'Meyer, Roselyn B

    2016-02-05

    Glucocorticoids (GCs) control essential metabolic processes in virtually every cell in the body and play a vital role in the development of fetal tissues and organ systems. The biological actions of GCs are mediated via glucocorticoid receptors (GRs), the cytoplasmic transcription factors that regulate the transcription of genes involved in placental and fetal growth and development. Several experimental studies have demonstrated that fetal exposure to high maternal GC levels early in gestation is associated with adverse fetal outcomes, including low birthweight, intrauterine growth restriction and anatomical and structural abnormalities that may increase the risk of cardiovascular, metabolic and neuroendocrine disorders in adulthood. The response of the fetus to GCs is dependent on gender, with female fetuses becoming hypersensitive to changes in GC levels whereas male fetuses develop GC resistance in the environment of high maternal GCs. In this paper we review GR function and the physiological and pathological effects of GCs on fetal development. We propose that GC-induced changes in the placental structure and function, including alterations in the expression of GR mRNA and protein levels, may play role in inhibiting in utero fetal growth.

  5. Extrinsic fetal akinesia and skeletal development: a study in oligohydramnios sequence.

    PubMed

    Palacios, J; Rodriguez, J I

    1990-07-01

    Long-bone morphometry and cephalometry were performed in 13 newborns with oligohydramnios sequence (OS) in order to establish whether or not skeletal changes existed in extrinsic fetal akinesia similar to those observed in the fetal akinesia deformative sequence (FADS) (i.e., hypoplastic long bones and micrognathia). Oligohydramnios sequence was caused by bilateral renal agenesis in five cases and obstructive uropathy in eight cases. Twenty-one stillborns and newborns who had died from conditions other than renal anomalies or congenital malformations were used as controls. Normal longitudinal and periosteal long-bone growth and absence of micrognathia were found in OS patients. Skeletal differences between FADS and OS may be explained not only by timing, duration, and degree of reduced motility but also, and more importantly, by the normal muscular stress in OS patients.

  6. Cytomegalovirus Infection during Pregnancy and Its Impact on the Intrauterine Fetal Development – Case Report

    PubMed Central

    Angelova, Mariya; Kovachev, Emil; Todorov, Nikolai

    2016-01-01

    AIM: The aim of this publication is to present a case of CMV infection during pregnancy, with clinical manifestations of the development of microcephaly and simultaneous dilatation of the 3rd and 4th brain ventricle at 23 weeks gestation. This article discusses the role of ultrasound screening in the second trimester of pregnancy. CASE PRESENTATION: We present the case of a 25-year-old woman with the initials S.K. in her second pregnancy that came to our antenatal Consulting Centre. The first screening for blood count, blood group, biochemistry and serology showed results within the reference range. The patient came for a second comprehensive biochemical screening at 17 – 18 weeks gestation. The results showed the low genetic risk of congenital anomalies. Fetal morphology of the fetus was normal. S.K. came again for consultation at 22 weeks gestation in connection with the admittance of her first 3-year-old child to the hospital because of pneumonia. Serological tests of the child had shown elevated CMV titer - specific IgM. Then we made new serological tests of the patient and the results have shown that the patient was most likely infected by CMV primarily in the first trimester of pregnancy. After consulting about the risk of transmission of CMV to the fetus, the woman chose monthly ultrasound scans and refused amniocentesis. At 36 weeks gestation, in addition to the microcephaly already established, enlargement of the IV brain ventricle at the expense of underdevelopment of the cerebellum was noticed. Also, 2nd to 3rd stage of placenta maturity and low quantity of amniotic fluid was established. A male fetus of weight 2,890 g and height 50 cm was delivered. The fetus was with skin petechiae and hepatosplenomegaly. Neurological examination showed no abnormalities. CONCLUSIONS: In the described case the time interval between infection and ultrasonic manifestations is more than 17 weeks. The long interval between infection and occurrence of ultrasound markers

  7. Coupling Diffusion Imaging with Histological and Gene Expression Analysis to Examine the Dynamics of Cortical Areas across the Fetal Period of Human Brain Development

    PubMed Central

    Huang, Hao; Jeon, Tina; Sedmak, Goran; Pletikos, Mihovil; Vasung, Lana; Xu, Xuming; Yarowsky, Paul; Richards, Linda J.; Kostović, Ivica; Šestan, Nenad; Mori, Susumu

    2013-01-01

    As a prominent component of the human fetal brain, the structure of the cerebral wall is characterized by its laminar organization which includes the radial glial scaffold during fetal development. Diffusion tensor imaging (DTI) is useful to quantitatively delineate the microstructure of the developing brain and to clearly identify transient fetal layers in the cerebral wall. In our study, the spatio-temporal microstructural changes in the developing human fetal cerebral wall were quantitatively characterized with high-resolution DTI data of postmortem fetal brains from 13 to 21 gestational weeks. Eleven regions of interest for each layer in the entire cerebral wall were included. Distinctive time courses of microstructural changes were revealed for 11 regions of the neocortical plate. A histological analysis was also integrated to elucidate the relationship between DTI fractional anisotropy (FA) and histology. High FA values correlated with organized radial architecture in histological image. Expression levels of 17565 genes were quantified for each of 11 regions of human fetal neocortex from 13 to 21 gestational weeks to identify transcripts showing significant correlation with FA change. These correlations suggest that the heterogeneous and regionally specific microstructural changes of the human neocortex are related to different gene expression patterns. PMID:22933464

  8. N-acetylcysteine attenuates lipopolysaccharide-induced impairment in lamination of Ctip2-and Tbr1- expressing cortical neurons in the developing rat fetal brain

    PubMed Central

    Chao, Ming-Wei; Chen, Chie-Pein; Yang, Yu-Hsiu; Chuang, Yu-Chen; Chu, Tzu-Yun; Tseng, Chia-Yi

    2016-01-01

    Oxidative stress and inflammatory insults are the major instigating events of bacterial intrauterine infection that lead to fetal brain injury. The purpose of this study is to investigate the remedial effects of N-acetyl-cysteine (NAC) for inflammation-caused deficits in brain development. We found that lipopolysaccharide (LPS) induced reactive oxygen species (ROS) production by RAW264.7 cells. Macrophage-conditioned medium caused noticeable cortical cell damage, specifically in cortical neurons. LPS at 25 μg/kg caused more than 75% fetal loss in rats. An increase in fetal cortical thickness was noted in the LPS-treated group. In the enlarged fetal cortex, laminar positioning of the early born cortical cells expressing Tbr1 and Ctip2 was disrupted, with a scattered distribution. The effect was similar, but minor, in later born Satb2-expressing cortical cells. NAC protected against LPS-induced neuron toxicity in vitro and counteracted pregnancy loss and alterations in thickness and lamination of the neocortex in vivo. Fetal loss and abnormal fetal brain development were due to LPS-induced ROS production. NAC is an effective protective agent against LPS-induced damage. This finding highlights the key therapeutic impact of NAC in LPS-caused abnormal neuronal laminar distribution during brain development. PMID:27577752

  9. Biomonitoring of human fetal exposure to environmental chemicals in early pregnancy.

    PubMed

    Cooke, Gerard M

    2014-01-01

    The first trimester of human fetal life, a period of extremely rapid development of physiological systems, represents the most rapid growth phase in human life. Interference in the establishment of organ systems may result in abnormal development that may be manifest immediately or programmed for later abnormal function. Exposure to environmental chemicals may be affecting development at these early stages, and yet there is limited knowledge of the quantities and identities of the chemicals to which the fetus is exposed during early pregnancy. Clearly, opportunities for assessing fetal chemical exposure directly are extremely limited. Hence, this review describes indirect means of assessing fetal exposure in early pregnancy to chemicals that are considered disrupters of development. Consideration is given to such matrices as maternal hair, fingernails, urine, saliva, sweat, breast milk, amniotic fluid and blood, and fetal matrices such as cord blood, cord tissue, meconium, placenta, and fetal liver. More than 150 articles that presented data from chemical analysis of human maternal and fetal tissues and fluids were reviewed. Priority was given to articles where chemical analysis was conducted in more than one matrix. Where correlations between maternal and fetal matrices were determined, these articles were included and are highlighted, as these may provide the basis for future investigations of early fetal exposure. The determination of fetal chemical exposure, at the time of rapid human growth and development, will greatly assist regulatory agencies in risk assessments and establishment of advisories for risk management concerning environmental chemicals.

  10. Cell-free total and fetal DNA in first trimester maternal serum and subsequent development of preeclampsia

    PubMed Central

    Silver, Robert; Clifton, Rebecca G.; Myatt, Leslie; Hauth, John C.; Leveno, Kenneth J.; Reddy, Uma M.; Peaceman, Alan M.; Ramin, Susan M.; Samuels, Philip; Saade, George; Sorokin, Yoram

    2017-01-01

    Objective To assess the relationship between first trimester cell-free total and fetal DNA in maternal plasma and the subsequent development of preeclampsia. Study Design Nested case-control study of patients enrolled in the Combined Antioxidant and Preeclampsia Prediction Studies (CAPPS) prediction study of 175 women who did and 175 women who did not develop preeclampsia. The predictive values of cell-free total and fetal DNA and the subsequent development of preeclampsia were measured using ROC curves. Results Cell-free total DNA was higher in African American (median; 25 – 75%; 6.15; 0.14 – 28.73; p = 0.02) and Hispanic (4.95; 0.20 – 26.82; p = 0.037) compared to white women (2.33; 0.03 – 13.10). Levels of cell-free total DNA was also associated with maternal BMI (p = 0.02). Cell-free total DNA levels were similar between women who later developed preeclampsia (3.52; 0.11 – 25.3) and controls (3.74; 0.12 – 21.14, p=0.96). Conclusions There is no significant difference in levels of cell-free total DNA in the first trimester in women who subsequently develop preeclampsia. Levels of cell-free total DNA in the first trimester are increased in African American and Hispanic compared to white women, and levels increase with increasing BMI. PMID:27398706

  11. Effect of lead on fetal development in rats fed with 8% casein diet

    SciTech Connect

    Saxena, D.K.; Lal, B.; Chandra, S.V.

    1987-10-01

    Nutritional status is known to affect the susceptibility of humans and animals to chemical insult. Prevalence of protein malnutrition in developing countries and increasing reports of exposure to lead through environmental pollution have led us to investigate the embryotoxic and teratogenic effects of lead in pregnant rats maintained on low protein diet so as to asses the developmental toxicity of lead in protein malnourished state.

  12. [Maternal nutrition during pregnancy conditions the fetal pancreas development, hormonal status and diabetes mellitus and metabolic syndrome biomarkers at birth].

    PubMed

    Sánchez-Muniz, F J; Gesteiro, E; Espárrago Rodilla, M; Rodríguez Bernal, B; Bastida, S

    2013-01-01

    Pregnancy is a vital period where several hyperplasic, hypertrophic processes together with metabolic adaptation and preparation for extra-uterine life take place. Present review accounts for central aspects of nutrition throughout gestation on the embryonic and fetal periods. It is centered in the major changes occurring in fetal pancreas, with special mention to the susceptibility of this main glucose homeostasis organ to support nutritional changes during maturation and development. Studies performed in animal models as human are commented considering the role of maternal nutrition on β-cell mass size, insulin and other pancreatic hormones production, and insulin sensitivity. Details of both the thrifty genotype and phenotype hypothesis are given, indicating that hypo/subnutrition causes metabolic adaptations that permit the future body to grow and develop itself in limited environmental and energetic conditions. The Barker hypothesis is considered suggesting that this metabolic hypothesis is a double-edged sword in the actual abundance World. Lastly the review, taking into account our own research and other papers, analyses less known aspects that relate maternal diet with insulin resistance/sensitivity markers at delivery. Particularly the role of the saturated fatty acid/carbohydrate and omega-6/omega-3 ratios in the frame of maternal diet is reviewed considering the quality of those diets under the Healthy Eating Index and the Adherence to Mediterranean Diet scores and the relationship with insulin resistance profile at birth. Present review ends indicating that nutritional habits should be strongly stated before gestation in order to assure a proper nutrition since the first moment of pregnancy. This will support an adequate fetal and pancreatic growth and development, and in turn, adequate glucose homeostasis during pregnancy and later in life, slowing down or preventing from degenerative diseases related with metabolic syndrome and type 2 diabetes

  13. Human fetal thyroid function.

    PubMed

    Polak, Michel

    2014-01-01

    The early steps of thyroid development that lead to its function in the human fetus and subsequently the further maturation that allows the human fetus to secrete thyroxine (T4) in a significant amount are reviewed here. We underline the importance of the transfer of T4 from the pregnant woman to her fetus, which contributes at all stages of the pregnancy to fetal thyroid function and development. In the first trimester of pregnancy, the temporal and structural correlation of thyroid hormone synthesis with folliculogenesis supported the concept that structural and functional maturations are closely related. Human thyroid terminal differentiation follows a precisely timed gene expression program. The crucial role of the sodium/iodine symporter for the onset of thyroid function in the human fetus is shown. Fetal T4 is detected by the eleventh week of gestation and progressively increases throughout. The pattern of thyroid hormones and thyroid-stimulating hormone levels in the course of pregnancy is given from fetal blood sampling data, and the mechanisms governing this maturation in the human fetus are discussed. Finally an example of primary human fetal thyroid dysfunction, such as in Down syndrome, is given. The understanding of the physiology of the human fetal thyroid function is the basis for fetal medicine in the field of thyroidology.

  14. Fetal calcium regulates branching morphogenesis in the developing human and mouse lung: involvement of voltage-gated calcium channels.

    PubMed

    Brennan, Sarah C; Finney, Brenda A; Lazarou, Maria; Rosser, Anne E; Scherf, Caroline; Adriaensen, Dirk; Kemp, Paul J; Riccardi, Daniela

    2013-01-01

    Airway branching morphogenesis in utero is essential for optimal postnatal lung function. In the fetus, branching morphogenesis occurs during the pseudoglandular stage (weeks 9-17 of human gestation, embryonic days (E)11.5-16.5 in mouse) in a hypercalcaemic environment (~1.7 in the fetus vs. ~1.1-1.3 mM for an adult). Previously we have shown that fetal hypercalcemia exerts an inhibitory brake on branching morphogenesis via the calcium-sensing receptor. In addition, earlier studies have shown that nifedipine, a selective blocker of L-type voltage-gated Ca(2+) channels (VGCC), inhibits fetal lung growth, suggesting a role for VGCC in lung development. The aim of this work was to investigate the expression of VGCC in the pseudoglandular human and mouse lung, and their role in branching morphogenesis. Expression of L-type (CaV1.2 and CaV1.3), P/Q type (CaV2.1), N-type (CaV2.2), R-type (CaV2.3), and T-type (CaV3.2 and CaV3.3) VGCC was investigated in paraffin sections from week 9 human fetal lungs and E12.5 mouse embryos. Here we show, for the first time, that Cav1.2 and Cav1.3 are expressed in both the smooth muscle and epithelium of the developing human and mouse lung. Additionally, Cav2.3 was expressed in the lung epithelium of both species. Incubating E12.5 mouse lung rudiments in the presence of nifedipine doubled the amount of branching, an effect which was partly mimicked by the Cav2.3 inhibitor, SNX-482. Direct measurements of changes in epithelial cell membrane potential, using the voltage-sensitive fluorescent dye DiSBAC2(3), demonstrated that cyclic depolarisations occur within the developing epithelium and coincide with rhythmic occlusions of the lumen, driven by the naturally occurring airway peristalsis. We conclude that VGCC are expressed and functional in the fetal human and mouse lung, where they play a role in branching morphogenesis. Furthermore, rhythmic epithelial depolarisations evoked by airway peristalsis would allow for branching to match

  15. Fetal Ultrasound

    MedlinePlus

    ... needle placement during certain prenatal tests, such as amniocentesis or chorionic villus sampling. Determine fetal position before ... home. Accessed Aug. 11, 2015. Ghidini A. Diagnostic amniocentesis. http://www.uptodate.com/home. Accessed Aug. 11, ...

  16. Fetal echocardiography

    MedlinePlus

    ... JavaScript. Fetal echocardiography is a test that uses sound waves ( ultrasound ) to evaluate the baby's heart for ... moved over the area. The probe sends out sound waves, which bounce off the baby's heart and ...

  17. Expression of Nerve Growth Factor (NGF), TrkA, and p75NTR in Developing Human Fetal Teeth

    PubMed Central

    Mitsiadis, Thimios A.; Pagella, Pierfrancesco

    2016-01-01

    Nerve growth factor (NGF) is important for the development and the differentiation of neuronal and non-neuronal cells. NGF binds to specific low- and high-affinity cell surface receptors, respectively, p75NTR and TrkA. In the present study, we examined by immunohistochemistry the expression patterns of the NGF, p75NTR, and TrkA proteins during human fetal tooth development, in order to better understand the mode of NGF signaling action in dental tissues. The results obtained show that these molecules are expressed in a wide range of dental cells of both epithelial and mesenchymal origin during early stages of odontogenesis, as well as in nerve fibers that surround the developing tooth germs. At more advanced developmental stages, NGF and TrkA are localized in differentiated cells with secretory capacities such as preameloblasts/ameloblasts secreting enamel matrix and odontoblasts secreting dentine matrix. In contrast, p75NTR expression is absent from these secretory cells and restricted in proliferating cells of the dental epithelium. The temporospatial distribution of NGF and p75NTR in fetal human teeth is similar, but not identical, with that observed previously in the developing rodent teeth, thus indicating that the genetic information is well-conserved during evolution. The expression patterns of NGF, p75NTR, and TrkA during odontogenesis suggest regulatory roles for NGF signaling in proliferation and differentiation of epithelial and mesenchymal cells, as well as in attraction and sprouting of nerve fibers within dental tissues. PMID:27536251

  18. Germline melanocortin-1-receptor genotype is associated with severity of cutaneous phenotype in congenital melanocytic nevi: a role for MC1R in human fetal development.

    PubMed

    Kinsler, Veronica A; Abu-Amero, Sayeda; Budd, Peter; Jackson, Ian J; Ring, Susan M; Northstone, Kate; Atherton, David J; Bulstrode, Neil W; Stanier, Philip; Hennekam, Raoul C; Sebire, Neil J; Moore, Gudrun E; Healy, Eugene

    2012-08-01

    Congenital melanocytic nevi (CMN) are pigmented birthmarks that affect up to 80% of the skin surface area. The increased frequency of CMN in families of severely affected individuals is suggestive of a predisposing germline genotype. We noted a high prevalence of red hair in affected families, and considered a role for MC1R in this condition. A cohort of 166 CMN subjects underwent pigmentary phenotyping, with MC1R genotyping in 113. Results were compared with a local control group of 60 unrelated children and with 300 UK children without CMN. CMN subjects had higher prevalences of red hair and a red-haired parent than local controls and had a higher rate of compound heterozygosity and homozygosity for MC1R variants. The presence of a V92M or R allele (D84E, R151C, R160W, D294H) was associated with increasing size of the CMN, implying a growth-promoting effect of these alleles. Unexpectedly, the V92M and R151C alleles were also strongly associated with birth weight in the CMN cohort, a finding confirmed in the control group. The effect of germline MC1R genotype on development and severity of CMN led us to investigate potential broader effects on growth, revealing a role for MC1R in normal fetal development.

  19. Input and output constraints affecting irrigation development

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schramm, G.

    1981-05-01

    In many of the developing countries the expansion of irrigated agriculture is used as a major development tool for bringing about increases in agricultural output, rural economic growth and income distribution. Apart from constraints imposed by water availability, the major limitations considered to any acceleration of such programs are usually thought to be those of costs and financial resources. However, as is shown on the basis of empirical data drawn from Mexico, in reality the feasibility and effectiveness of such development programs is even more constrained by the lack of specialized physical and human factors on the input and market limitations on the output side. On the input side, the limited availability of complementary factors such as, for example, truly functioning credit systems for small-scale farmers or effective agricultural extension services impose long-term constraints on development. On the output side the limited availability, high risk, and relatively slow growth of markets for high-value crops sharply reduce the usually hoped-for and projected profitable crop mix that would warrant the frequently high costs of irrigation investments. Three conclusions are drawn: (1) Factors in limited supply have to be shadow-priced to reflect their high opportunity costs in alternative uses. (2) Re-allocation of financial resources from immediate construction of projects to longer-term increase in the supply of scarce, highly-trained manpower resources are necessary in order to optimize development over time. (3) Inclusion of high-value, high-income producing crops in the benefit-cost analysis of new projects is inappropriate if these crops could potentially be grown in already existing projects.

  20. Even Low Levels of Alcohol during Pregnancy Can Affect Fetal Brain Development. Science Briefs

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    National Scientific Council on the Developing Child, 2008

    2008-01-01

    "Science Briefs" summarize the findings and implications of a recent study in basic science or clinical research. This brief reports on the study "Effects of Prenatal Alcohol Exposure on GABAergic Neurons" (V. C. Cuzone; P. W. L. Yeh; Y. Yanagawa; K. Obata; and H. H. Yeh). Study results indicate that even exposure to low levels of alcohol during…

  1. Fetal stroke.

    PubMed

    Ozduman, Koray; Pober, Barbara R; Barnes, Patrick; Copel, Joshua A; Ogle, Eileen A; Duncan, Charles C; Ment, Laura R

    2004-03-01

    Fetal stroke, or that which occurs between 14 weeks of gestation and the onset of labor resulting in delivery, has been associated with postnatal epilepsy, mental retardation, and cerebral palsy. The entity is caused by antenatal ischemic, thrombotic, or hemorrhagic injury. We present seven new cases of fetal stroke diagnosed in utero and review the 47 cases reported in the literature. Although risk factors could not be assigned to 50% of the fetuses with stroke, the most common maternal conditions associated with fetal stroke were alloimmune thrombocytopenia and trauma. Magnetic resonance imaging was optimal for identifying fetal stroke, and prenatal imaging revealed hemorrhagic lesions in over 90% of studies; porencephalies were identified in just 13%. Seventy-eight percent of cases with reported outcome resulted in either death or adverse neurodevelopmental outcome at ages 3 months to 6 years. Fetal stroke appears to have different risk factors, clinical characteristics, and outcomes than other perinatal or childhood stroke syndromes. A better understanding of those risk factors predisposing a fetus to cerebral infarction may provide a basis for future therapeutic intervention trials. Ozduman K, Pober BR, Barnes P, Copel JA, Ogle EA, Duncan CC, Ment LR. Fetal stroke.

  2. The fine structure of the human fetal urinary bladder. Development and maturation. A light, transmission and scanning electron microscopic study.

    PubMed Central

    Newman, J; Antonakopoulos, G N

    1989-01-01

    The urinary bladders of 27 human fetuses, aged 7 weeks to full term, were studied by light, transmission and scanning electron microscopy to establish the sequence of events in the development and maturation of the organ during fetal life. In the early specimens, 7-12 weeks old, the urinary bladder was lined by a bilayered, cuboidal and glycogen-rich epithelium. During the 13-17th weeks the epithelium thickened, a third layer developed and by light microscopy it now resembled urothelium. By 21 weeks this had evolved into a 3-4 layer thick epithelium with typical ultrastructural urothelial characteristics. Smooth muscle cells emerged from the condensed mesenchyme of the bladder wall by the 12th week of gestation, initially in the cephalic part of the organ but spreading within a week into the caudal end. Our findings indicate that the human fetal bladder undergoes a series of vital developmental changes during 13-21 weeks of gestation finally acquiring the typical urothelial lining and a well-developed muscular coat. Images Fig. 2 Fig. 3 Fig. 4 Fig. 5 Fig. 6 Fig. 7 Fig. 8 Fig. 9 Fig. 10 Fig. 11 Fig. 12 Fig. 13 Fig. 14 Fig. 15 Fig. 16 Fig. 17 PMID:2621133

  3. Renal Angiomyolipoma in Pregnancy: Surgical Management with Fetal Preservation - Approach in a Developing Setting

    PubMed Central

    Ugwumba, Fred O.; Nnakenyi, Emeka F.; Okafor, Okechukwu C.; Onuh, Augustine C.; Ezechukwu, Paschalina C.; Urube, Sunday

    2016-01-01

    Renal angiomyolipomas (RAML) are uncommon benign renal tumours that are associated with a tendency to rupture resulting in sometimes-torrential retroperitoneal hemorrhage as the Wunderlich syndrome or as severe potentially exsanguinating hematuria. When hemorrhage from RAML occurs in pregnancy it presents a unique challenge requiring timely and appropriately adapted intervention with the goal of preventing fatality, preserving renal function as well as preventing fetal loss if possible. We report the management of severe bleeding from RAML in pregnancy and highlight the need to adopt a management strategy that suits the practice environment and offers the patient standard and enduring care. PMID:28176962

  4. Physiological reactivity of pregnant women to evoked fetal startle

    PubMed Central

    DiPietro, Janet A.; Voegtline, Kristin M.; Costigan, Kathleen A.; Aguirre, Frank; Kivlighan, Katie; Chen, Ping

    2013-01-01

    Objective The bidirectional nature of mother-child interaction is widely acknowledged during infancy and childhood. Prevailing models during pregnancy focus on unidirectional influences exerted by the pregnant woman on the developing fetus. Prior work has indicated that the fetus also affects the pregnant woman. Our objective was to determine whether a maternal psychophysiological response to stimulation of the fetus could be isolated. Methods Using a longitudinal design, an airborne auditory stimulus was used to elicit a fetal heart rate and motor response at 24 (n = 47) and 36 weeks (n = 45) gestation. Women were blind to condition (stimulus versus sham). Maternal parameters included cardiac (heart rate) and electrodermal (skin conductance) responses. Multilevel modeling of repeated measures with 5 data points per second was used to examine fetal and maternal responses. Results As expected, compared to a sham condition, the stimulus generated a fetal motor response at both gestational ages, consistent with a mild fetal startle. Fetal stimulation was associated with significant, transient slowing of maternal heart rate coupled with increased skin conductance within 10 s of the stimulus at both gestational ages. Nulliparous women showed greater electrodermal responsiveness. The magnitude of the fetal motor response significantly corresponded to the maternal skin conductance response at 5, 10, 15, and 30 s following stimulation. Conclusion Elicited fetal movement exerts an independent influence on the maternal autonomic nervous system. This finding contributes to current models of the dyadic relationship during pregnancy between fetus and pregnant woman. PMID:24119937

  5. Fetal movement and fetal presentation.

    PubMed

    Suzuki, S; Yamamuro, T

    1985-09-01

    Fetal movements were analyzed by means of ultrasonography in an attempt to clarify the causative factor of frank breech presentation. Fetal posture, position, presentation and movements, as well as posture of the extremities and the volume of amniotic cavity were analyzed by ultrasonography in 112 fetuses ranging from 12 to 42 weeks of gestation. There existed three different fetal states: inactivity; slow sporadic movements without changes of presentations; active whole body movements with changes of presentations. It appears likely that version of fetal presentation from breech to cephalic occurs as the fetus tries to accommodate itself to the shape of the uterus during the state of active whole body movements, and the frank breech presentation of the fetus might result when the whole body movements are weak or absent.

  6. The circumplex model of affect: An integrative approach to affective neuroscience, cognitive development, and psychopathology

    PubMed Central

    Posner, Jonathan; Russell, James A.; Peterson, Bradley S.

    2008-01-01

    The circumplex model of affect proposes that all affective states arise from cognitive interpretations of core neural sensations that are the product of two independent neurophysiological systems. This model stands in contrast to theories of basic emotions, which posit that a discrete and independent neural system subserves every emotion. We propose that basic emotion theories no longer explain adequately the vast number of empirical observations from studies in affective neuroscience, and we suggest that a conceptual shift is needed in the empirical approaches taken to the study of emotion and affective psychopathologies. The circumplex model of affect is more consistent with many recent findings from behavioral, cognitive neuroscience, neuroimaging, and developmental studies of affect. Moreover, the model offers new theoretical and empirical approaches to studying the development of affective disorders as well as the genetic and cognitive underpinnings of affective processing within the central nervous system. PMID:16262989

  7. In situ hybridization analysis of anterior pituitary hormone gene expression during fetal mouse development.

    PubMed

    Japón, M A; Rubinstein, M; Low, M J

    1994-08-01

    We used 35S-labeled oligonucleotides and cRNAs (riboprobes) to detect the temporal order and spatial pattern of anterior pituitary hormone gene expression in (B6CBF1 x B6CBF1)F2 fetal mice from embryonic Day 9.5 (E9.5) to postnatal Day 1 (P1). Pro-opiomelanocortin (POMC) mRNA was expressed in the basal diencephalon on Day E10.5, in the ventromedial zone of the pars distalis on Day E12.5, and in the pars intermedia on Day E14.5. The common alpha-glycoprotein subunit (alpha-GSU) mRNA first appeared in the anterior wall of Rathke's pouch on Day E11.5 and extended to the pars tuberalis and ventromedial zone of the pars distalis on Day E12.5. Thyroid-stimulating hormone-beta (TSH beta) subunit mRNA was expressed initially in both the pas tuberalis and ventromedial pars distalis on Day E14.5, with an identical spatial distribution to alpha-GSU at the time. In contrast, luteinizing hormone-beta (LH beta) subunit and follicle-stimulating hormone beta (FSH beta) subunit mRNAs were detected initially only in the ventromedial pars distalis on Days E16.5 and E17.5, respectively, in an identical distribution to each other. POMC-, alpha-GSU-, TSH beta, LH beta-, and FSH beta-positive cells within the pars distalis all increased in number and autoradiographic signal with differing degrees of spatial expansion posteriorly, laterally, and dorsally up to Day P1. POMC expression was typically the most intense and extended circumferentially to include the entire lateral and dorsal surfaces of the pars distalis. The expression of both growth hormone (GH) and prolactin (PRL) started coincidentally on Day E15.5. However PRL cells localized in the ventromedial area similarly to POMC and the glycoprotein hormone subunits, whereas GH cells were found initially in a more lateral and central distribution within the lobes of the pars distalis. Somatotrophs increased dramatically in number and autoradiographic signal, extending throughout the pars distalis except for the most peripheral layer

  8. Hormonal regulation of fetal growth.

    PubMed

    Gicquel, C; Le Bouc, Y

    2006-01-01

    Fetal growth is a complex process depending on the genetics of the fetus, the availability of nutrients and oxygen to the fetus, maternal nutrition and various growth factors and hormones of maternal, fetal and placental origin. Hormones play a central role in regulating fetal growth and development. They act as maturational and nutritional signals in utero and control tissue development and differentiation according to the prevailing environmental conditions in the fetus. The insulin-like growth factor (IGF) system, and IGF-I and IGF-II in particular, plays a critical role in fetal and placental growth throughout gestation. Disruption of the IGF1, IGF2 or IGF1R gene retards fetal growth, whereas disruption of IGF2R or overexpression of IGF2 enhances fetal growth. IGF-I stimulates fetal growth when nutrients are available, thereby ensuring that fetal growth is appropriate for the nutrient supply. The production of IGF-I is particularly sensitive to undernutrition. IGF-II plays a key role in placental growth and nutrient transfer. Several key hormone genes involved in embryonic and fetal growth are imprinted. Disruption of this imprinting causes disorders involving growth defects, such as Beckwith-Wiedemann syndrome, which is associated with fetal overgrowth, or Silver-Russell syndrome, which is associated with intrauterine growth retardation. Optimal fetal growth is essential for perinatal survival and has long-term consequences extending into adulthood. Given the high incidence of intrauterine growth retardation and the high risk of metabolic and cardiovascular complications in later life, further clinical and basic research is needed to develop accurate early diagnosis of aberrant fetal growth and novel therapeutic strategies.

  9. Precocial rodents as new experimental model to study the effects of altered gravitational conditions on fetal development

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sekulić, Slobodan; Božić, Ksenija; Bozić, Aleksandar; Borota, Jelena; Ćulić, Milka

    2006-09-01

    So far the experiments in altered gravitational conditions on the prenatal development have used altricial rodent species. The aim of this study is to explore the differences in the intrauterine development of locomotor system in precocial (guinea pig, spiny mouse) and altricial (rat, mouse, and golden hamster) rodent species and to determine which of these mammalian groups represent a better study model to conduct research on the influence of altered gravitational conditions on human fetal development. Findings suggest that the influence of altered gravitational conditions on development of locomotor system significantly vary according to the maturity of mammals. By the characteristics of maturity at birth precocial rodents are more similar to a human than altricial species. Since precocial species have similar maturity of locomotor system to human, the changes caused by altered gravity among them should be similar as opposed to altricial species.

  10. Polystyrene nanoparticles affect Xenopus laevis development

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tussellino, Margherita; Ronca, Raffaele; Formiggini, Fabio; Marco, Nadia De; Fusco, Sabato; Netti, Paolo Antonio; Carotenuto, Rosa

    2015-02-01

    Exposing living organisms to nanoparticulates is potentially hazardous, in particular when it takes place during embryogenesis. In this investigation, we have studied the effects of 50-nm-uncoated polystyrene nanoparticles (PSNPs) as a model to investigate the suitability of their possible future employments. We have used the standardized Frog Embryo Teratogenesis Assay- Xenopus test during the early stages of larval development of Xenopus laevis, and we have employed either contact exposure or microinjections. We found that the embryos mortality rate is dose dependent and that the survived embryos showed high percentage of malformations. They display disorders in pigmentation distribution, malformations of the head, gut and tail, edema in the anterior ventral region, and a shorter body length compared with sibling untreated embryos. Moreover, these embryos grow more slowly than the untreated embryos. Expressions of the mesoderm markers, bra (T-box Brachyury gene), myod1 (myogenic differentiation1), and of neural crest marker sox9 (sex SRY (determining region Y-box 9) transcription factor sox9), are modified. Confocal microscopy showed that the nanoparticles are localized in the cytoplasm, in the nucleus, and in the periphery of the digestive gut cells. Our data suggest that PSNPs are toxic and show a potential teratogenic effect for Xenopus larvae. We hypothesize that these effects may be due either to the amount of NPs that penetrate into the cells and/or to the "corona" effect caused by the interaction of PSNPs with cytoplasm components. The three endpoints of our study, i.e., mortality, malformations, and growth inhibition, suggest that the tests we used may be a powerful and flexible bioassay in evaluating pollutants in aquatic embryos.

  11. Developing fetal motor-cardiovascular coordination analyzed from multi-channel magnetocardiography.

    PubMed

    Schmidt, A; Schneider, U; Witte, O W; Schleußner, E; Hoyer, D

    2014-10-01

    Fetal movements (FM) related heart rate accelerations (AC) are an important maturation criterion. Since Doppler-based time resolution is not sufficient for accompanying heart rate variability analysis, the work is aimed at a comprehensive FM-AC analysis using magnetocardiographic recordings from fetuses during sleep.We identify FM and AC by independent component analysis and automatic recognition algorithms. We investigate associations between FM and AC of different magnitude by means of event coincidence and time series cross-correlation over the maturation period of 21-40 weeks of gestation (WGA).FM related AC appear with increasing AC magnitude and WGA. Vice versa, AC related FM appear independent of WGA, but more frequently with increasing AC amplitude. The FM-AC correlation exists already at 21 WGA and further increases with WGA while the variability of its time delay decreases. Hence, FM and AC are clearly associated over the whole investigated maturation period. The increase of FM related AC runs parallel to the increasing AC magnitude.The MCG methodology was confirmed and results from previous Doppler-based analyses reproduced. Hence, MCG recordings allow the collective analysis of heart rate variability based maturation indices and FM related AC. This synergism may improve the diagnosis of fetal developmental disorders.

  12. Effect of nebivolol treatment during pregnancy on the genital circulation, fetal growth and postnatal development in the Wistar rat.

    PubMed

    Altoama, Kassem; Yassine Mallem, Mohamed; Thorin, Chantal; Betti, Eric; Desfontis, Jean-Claude

    2015-07-05

    The aim of study was to evaluate the effects of nebivolol, a cardioselective beta-1 adrenergic receptor blocker of the third generation with vasodilatory properties, vs. bisoprolol on the genital circulation, uterine vasculature, fetal growth and postnatal development in pregnant Wistar rats. Non invasive measurements of systolic and diastolic blood pressure (SBP and DBP) and heart rate (HR), and invasive measurement of genital blood flow (GBF) were taken in pregnant rats, by tail cuff and transonic probe methods respectively, after an oral treatment by gastric gavage with nebivolol (8mg/kg/day) or bisoprolol (10mg/kg/day) from day 11 to day 18 of pregnancy. Other morphometrical and histological measurements were performed on the ovarian and uterine arteries to evaluate the effect of nebivolol on the uterine vasculature. Furthermore, postnatal mortality and pup growth were recorded. The data demonstrated that nebivolol (compared with bisoprolol) induced a significant decrease in SBP, HR and GBF while DBP remained unchanged. Moreover, nebivolol increased the diameter and the length of ovarian and uterine arteries and the number of uterine artery segmental branches. The results also showed that the body weight gain of newborns in the nebivolol group was significantly lower vs. bisoprolol and vs. control with a higher mortality rate. The nebivolol action is not only limited to its favorable hemodynamic effects represented by a decrease in blood pressure, but it also produces adverse effects on fetal growth and postnatal development that may limit its therapeutic use in females during pregnancy.

  13. Fetal radiofrequency radiation exposure from 800-1900 mhz-rated cellular telephones affects neurodevelopment and behavior in mice.

    PubMed

    Aldad, Tamir S; Gan, Geliang; Gao, Xiao-Bing; Taylor, Hugh S

    2012-01-01

    Neurobehavioral disorders are increasingly prevalent in children, however their etiology is not well understood. An association between prenatal cellular telephone use and hyperactivity in children has been postulated, yet the direct effects of radiofrequency radiation exposure on neurodevelopment remain unknown. Here we used a mouse model to demonstrate that in-utero radiofrequency exposure from cellular telephones does affect adult behavior. Mice exposed in-utero were hyperactive and had impaired memory as determined using the object recognition, light/dark box and step-down assays. Whole cell patch clamp recordings of miniature excitatory postsynaptic currents (mEPSCs) revealed that these behavioral changes were due to altered neuronal developmental programming. Exposed mice had dose-responsive impaired glutamatergic synaptic transmission onto layer V pyramidal neurons of the prefrontal cortex. We present the first experimental evidence of neuropathology due to in-utero cellular telephone radiation. Further experiments are needed in humans or non-human primates to determine the risk of exposure during pregnancy.

  14. Fetal Radiofrequency Radiation Exposure From 800-1900 Mhz-Rated Cellular Telephones Affects Neurodevelopment and Behavior in Mice

    PubMed Central

    Aldad, Tamir S.; Gan, Geliang; Gao, Xiao-Bing; Taylor, Hugh S.

    2012-01-01

    Neurobehavioral disorders are increasingly prevalent in children, however their etiology is not well understood. An association between prenatal cellular telephone use and hyperactivity in children has been postulated, yet the direct effects of radiofrequency radiation exposure on neurodevelopment remain unknown. Here we used a mouse model to demonstrate that in-utero radiofrequency exposure from cellular telephones does affect adult behavior. Mice exposed in-utero were hyperactive and had impaired memory as determined using the object recognition, light/dark box and step-down assays. Whole cell patch clamp recordings of miniature excitatory postsynaptic currents (mEPSCs) revealed that these behavioral changes were due to altered neuronal developmental programming. Exposed mice had dose-responsive impaired glutamatergic synaptic transmission onto layer V pyramidal neurons of the prefrontal cortex. We present the first experimental evidence of neuropathology due to in-utero cellular telephone radiation. Further experiments are needed in humans or non-human primates to determine the risk of exposure during pregnancy. PMID:22428084

  15. Children's toxicology from bench to bed--Drug-induced renal injury (1): The toxic effects of ARB/ACEI on fetal kidney development.

    PubMed

    Sekine, Takashi; Miura, Ken-ichiro; Takahashi, Kazuhiro; Igarashi, Takashi

    2009-01-01

    Development of fetal kidney is a finely programmed sequence, and is regulated by many important molecules. The perturbation of normal kidney development leads to congenital anomalies of kidney and urinary tract (CAKUT). CAKUT includes hypoplastic/dysplastic kidney, obstructive nephropathy and several other anomalies. CAKUT is of clinically importance, since it could lead to end stage renal failure when its anomaly grade is severe. So far, several causative genes responsible for development of CAKUT have been identified, including genes encoding molecules related to the renin-angiotensin-aldosterone system, RAS system. In humans, maternal administration of agents with inhibitory effects on the RAS system, such as angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitors (ACEIs) or angiotensin type 1 receptor blockers (ARBs), have been reported to cause severe renal malformation, designated as ACEI/ARB fetopathy. In this paper, we overview the development of fetal kidney and address the effects of ACEIs/ARBs on fetal kidney.

  16. Maternal obesity induced by a high fat diet causes altered cellular development in fetal brains suggestive of a predisposition of offspring to neurological disorders in later life.

    PubMed

    Stachowiak, Ewa K; Srinivasan, Malathi; Stachowiak, Michal K; Patel, Mulchand S

    2013-12-01

    Fetal development in an obese maternal intrauterine environment has been shown to predispose the offspring for a number of metabolic disorders in later life. The observation that a large percentage of women of child-bearing age in the US are overweight/obese during pregnancy is therefore a source of concern. A high fat (HF) diet-induced obesity in female rats has been used as a model for maternal obesity. The objective of this study was to determine cellular development in brains of term fetuses of obese rats fed a HF diet from the time of weaning. Fetal brains were dissected out on gestational day 21 and processed for immunohistochemical analysis in the hypothalamic as well as extra-hypothalamic regions. The major observation of this study is that fetal development in the obese HF female rat induced several alterations in the HF fetal brain. Marked increases were observed in orexigenic signaling and a significant decrease was observed for anorexigenic signaling in the vicinity of the 3rd ventricle in HF brains. Additionally, our results indicated diminished migration and maturation of stem-like cells in the 3rd ventricular region as well as in the brain cortex. The results from the present study indicate developmental alterations in the hypothalamic and extra-hypothalamic regions in the HF fetal brain suggestive of a predisposition for the development of obesity and possibly neurodevelopmental abnormalities in the offspring.

  17. Atypical fetal prostate development is associated with ipsilateral hypoplasia of the wolffian ducts in the ACI rat.

    PubMed

    Hofkamp, Luke E; Bradley, Sarahann; Geliebter, Jan; Timms, Barry G

    2010-05-01

    For over a half century, the ACI (August x Copenhagen) rat has been a primary model for studying renal agenesis and ipsilateral hypoplasia (IHP) of the Wolffian-derived structures (WDS). Because the ACI rat is also used as a model for prostate research, it is important to examine the relationship of IHP and urogenital sinus (UGS) development. The prostate is dependent on androgens for proper growth and differentiation. Alteration in androgen production and/or delivery to the UGS has the potential to perturbate normal development. In this study, we investigate whether the ipsilateral loss of the WDS is associated with altered prostate development. Digital images of serial-sectioned fetal ACI rat UGS were used to create three-dimensional (3-D) surface-rendered models of the developing prostate, seminal vesicle, vas deferens, and utricle on gestational day 21. The number and volume of prostate ducts developing from the UGS were calculated from the 3-D model data. Animals exhibiting IHP had a significant decrease in total fetal prostate volume (40%; P < 0.005) with significant regional specific differences when compared with normal male ACI rats. Anatomical and histological differences in the utricle, abnormal histology of the ipsilateral testes, and a truncation of the ipsilateral Wolffian ductal mesenchyme were also seen in the animals with IHP. Additional research is needed to further understand the mechanisms and consequences of IHP on prostate growth and development. Alterations to normal prenatal development of the male accessory sex organs can have important consequences for the growth and morphology of the adult gland.

  18. Effects of L-glutamine supplementation on maternal and fetal hemodynamics in gestating ewes exposed to alcohol

    PubMed Central

    Sawant, Onkar B.; Ramadoss, Jayanth; Hankins, Gary D.; Wu, Guoyao

    2014-01-01

    Not much is known about effects of gestational alcohol exposure on maternal and fetal cardiovascular adaptations. This study determined whether maternal binge alcohol exposure and L-glutamine supplementation could affect maternal-fetal hemodynamics and fetal regional brain blood flow during the brain growth spurt period. Pregnant sheep were randomly assigned to one of four groups: saline control, alcohol (1.75–2.5 g/kg body weight), glutamine (100 mg/kg body weight) or alcohol + glutamine. A chronic weekend binge drinking paradigm between gestational days (GD) 99 and 115 was utilized. Fetuses were surgically instrumented on GD 117 ± 1 and studied on GD 120 ± 1. Binge alcohol exposure caused maternal acidemia, hypercapnea, and hypoxemia. Fetuses were acidemic and hypercapnic, but not hypoxemic. Alcohol exposure increased fetal mean arterial pressure, whereas fetal heart rate was unaltered. Alcohol exposure resulted in ~40 % reduction in maternal uterine artery blood flow. Labeled microsphere analyses showed that alcohol induced >2-fold increases in fetal whole brain blood flow. The elevation in fetal brain blood flow was region-specific, particularly affecting the developing cerebellum, brain stem, and olfactory bulb. Maternal L-glutamine supplementation attenuated alcohol-induced maternal hypercapnea, fetal acidemia and increases in fetal brain blood flow. L-Glutamine supplementation did not affect uterine blood flow. Collectively, alcohol exposure alters maternal and fetal acid–base balance, decreases uterine blood flow, and alters fetal regional brain blood flow. Importantly, L-glutamine supplementation mitigates alcohol-induced acid–base imbalances and alterations in fetal regional brain blood flow. Further studies are warranted to elucidate mechanisms responsible for alcohol-induced programming of maternal uterine artery and fetal circulation adaptations in pregnancy. PMID:24810329

  19. Maternal-fetal transfer and metabolism of vitamin A and its precursor β-carotene in the developing tissues

    PubMed Central

    Spiegler, Elizabeth; Kim, Youn-Kyung; Wassef, Lesley; Shete, Varsha; Quadro, Loredana

    2011-01-01

    The requirement of the developing mammalian embryo for retinoic acid is well established. Retinoic acid, the active form of vitamin A, can be generated from retinol and retinyl ester obtained from food of animal origin, and from carotenoids, mainly β-carotene, from vegetables and fruits. The mammalian embryo relies on retinol, retinyl ester and β-carotene circulating in the maternal bloodstream for its supply of vitamin A. The maternal-fetal transfer of retinoids and carotenoids, as well as the metabolism of these compounds in the developing tissues are still poorly understood. The existing knowledge in this field has been summarized in this review in reference to our basic understanding of the transport and metabolism of retinoids and carotenoids in adult tissues. The need for future research on the metabolism of these essential lipophilic nutrients during development is highlighted. PMID:21621637

  20. Implications of dietary fatty acids during pregnancy on placental, fetal and postnatal development--a review.

    PubMed

    Herrera, Emilio

    2002-04-01

    During pregnancy, the mother adapts her metabolism to support the continuous draining of substrates by the fetus. Her increase in net body weight (free of the conceptus) corresponds to the accumulation of fat depots during the first two-thirds of gestation, switching to an accelerated breakdown of these during the last trimester. Under fasting conditions, adipose tissue lipolytic activity is highly enhanced, and its products, free fatty acids (FFA) and glycerol, are mainly driven to maternal liver, where FFA are converted to ketone bodies and glycerol to glucose, which easily cross the placenta and sustain fetal metabolism. Lipolytic products reaching maternal liver are also used for triglyceride synthesis that are released in turn to the circulation, where together with an enhanced transfer of triglycerides among the different lipoprotein fractions, and a decrease in extrahepatic lipoprotein lipase activity, increase the content of triglycerides in all the lipoprotein fractions. Long chain polyunsaturated fatty acids (LCPUFA) circulate in maternal plasma associated to lipoprotein triglycerides, and in a minor proportion in the form of FFA. Despite the lack of a direct placental transfer of triglycerides, diffusion of their fatty acids to the fetus is ensured by means of lipoprotein receptors, lipoprotein lipase activity and intracellular lipase activities in the placenta. Maternal plasma FFA are also an important source of LCPUFA to the fetus, and their placental uptake occurs via a selective process of facilitated membrane translocation involving a plasma membrane fatty acid-binding protein. This mechanism together with a selective cellular metabolism determine the actual rate of placental transfer and its selectivity, resulting even in an enrichment of certain LCPUFA in fetal circulation as compared to maternal. The degree to which the fetus is capable of fatty acid desaturation and elongation is not clear, although both term and preterm infants can synthesize

  1. Fetal, neonatal, infant, and child international growth standards: an unprecedented opportunity for an integrated approach to assess growth and development.

    PubMed

    Garza, Cutberto

    2015-07-01

    The recent publication of fetal growth and gestational age-specific growth standards by the International Fetal and Newborn Growth Consortium for the 21st Century Project and the previous publication by the WHO of infant and young child growth standards based on the WHO Multicentre Growth Reference Study enable evaluations of growth from ∼9 wk gestation to 5 y. The most important features of these projects are the prescriptive approach used for subject selection and the rigorous testing of the assertion that growth is very similar among geographically and ethnically diverse nonisolated populations when health, nutrition, and other care needs are met and the environment imposes minimal constraints on growth. Both studies documented that with adequate controls, the principal source of variability in growth during gestation and early childhood resides among individuals. Study sites contributed much less to observed variability. The agreement between anthropometric measurements common to both studies also is noteworthy. Jointly, these studies provide for the first time, to my knowledge, a conceptually consistent basis for worldwide and localized assessments and comparisons of growth performance in early life. This is an important contribution to improving the health care of children across key periods of growth and development, especially given the appropriate interest in pursuing "optimal" health in the "first 1000 d," i.e., the period covering fertilization/implantation, gestation, and postnatal life to 2 y of age.

  2. Tissue plasminogen activator is required for the development of fetal alcohol syndrome in mice.

    PubMed

    Noel, Melissa; Norris, Erin H; Strickland, Sidney

    2011-03-22

    Ethanol exposure during developmental synaptogenesis can lead to brain defects referred to as fetal alcohol syndrome (FAS), which can include mental health problems such as cognitive deficits and mental retardation. In FAS, widespread neuronal death and brain mass loss precedes behavioral and cognitive impairments in adulthood. Because tissue plasminogen activator (tPA) has been implicated in neurodegeneration, we examined whether it mediates FAS. Neonatal WT and tPA-/- mice were injected with ethanol to mimic FAS in humans. In WT mice, ethanol elicited caspase-3 activation, significant forebrain neurodegeneration, and decreased contextual fear conditioning in adults. However, tPA-deficient mice were protected from these neurotoxicities, and this protection could be abrogated by exogenous tPA. Selective pharmacological modulators of NMDA and GABAA receptor pathways revealed that the effects of tPA were mediated by the NR2B subunit of the NMDA receptor. This study identifies tPA as a critical signaling component in FAS.

  3. Hormonal and extracellular matrix components act as mediators for mouse fetal lung development

    SciTech Connect

    Smith, C.I.

    1988-01-01

    The concentration of disaturated phosphatidylcholine (DPPC) in 16 day lung tissue was measured after 5 days in culture. When grown in the absence of serum and hormones, levels of DPPC, assayed by phosphorus content, increased over 17 day in vivo controls. Treated with thyroxine and dexamethasone, DPPC levels were comparable to 2 day postnatal controls. Levels of DPPC increased in cultures containing dexamethasone alone while thyroxine alone had significantly less effect. 16- and 19-day fetal lung tissues were labeled with {sup 35}S-sulfate and {sup 3}H-glucosamine. Each pool was analyzed by DEAE-sepharose chromatography and by digestion with nitrous acid and chondroitinase. GAG synthesis was inhibited using {beta}-xyloside. The {beta}-xyloside inhibition of GAG synthesis was examined morphologically by transmission and scanning electron microscopy and functionally by autoradiography, sequential extraction, chromatography, and digestion as above.

  4. Estrogenic chemicals in plastic and oral contraceptives disrupt development of the fetal mouse prostate and urethra

    PubMed Central

    Timms, Barry G.; Howdeshell, Kembra L.; Barton, Lesley; Bradley, Sarahann; Richter, Catherine A.; vom Saal, Frederick S.

    2005-01-01

    Exposure of human fetuses to man-made estrogenic chemicals can occur through several sources. For example, fetal exposure to ethinylestradiol occurs because each year ≈3% of women taking oral contraceptives become pregnant. Exposure to the estrogenic chemical bisphenol A occurs through food and beverages because of significant leaching from polycarbonate plastic products and the lining of cans. We fed pregnant CD-1 mice ethinylestradiol (0.1 μg/kg per day) and bisphenol A (10 μg/kg per day), which are doses below the range of exposure by pregnant women. In male mouse fetuses, both ethinylestradiol and bisphenol A produced an increase in the number and size of dorsolateral prostate ducts and an overall increase in prostate duct volume. Histochemical staining of sections with antibodies to proliferating cell nuclear antigen and mouse keratin 5 indicated that these increases were due to a marked increase in proliferation of basal epithelial cells located in the primary ducts. The urethra was malformed in the colliculus region and was significantly constricted where it enters the bladder, which could contribute to urine flow disorders. These effects were identical to those caused by a similar dose (0.1 μg/kg per day) of the estrogenic drug diethylstilbestrol (DES), a known human developmental teratogen and carcinogen. In contrast, a 2,000-fold higher DES dose completely inhibited dorsolateral prostate duct formation, revealing opposite effects of high and low doses of estrogen. Acceleration in the rate of proliferation of prostate epithelium during fetal life by small amounts of estrogenic chemicals could permanently disrupt cellular control systems and predispose the prostate to disease in adulthood. PMID:15867144

  5. Affective Development in Advanced Old Age: Analyses of Terminal Change in Positive and Negative Affect

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Schilling, Oliver K.; Wahl, Hans-Werner; Wiegering, Sarah

    2013-01-01

    Late-life development of affect may unfold terminal changes that are driven more by end-of-life processes and not so much by time since birth. This study aimed to explore time-to-death-related effects in measures of affect in a sample of the very old. We used longitudinal data (2 measurement occasions: 2002 and 2003) from 140 deceased…

  6. Deiodinase-mediated thyroid hormone inactivation minimizes thyroid hormone signaling in the early development of fetal skeleton.

    PubMed

    Capelo, Luciane P; Beber, Eduardo H; Huang, Stephen A; Zorn, Telma M T; Bianco, Antonio C; Gouveia, Cecília H A

    2008-11-01

    Thyroid hormone (TH) plays a key role on post-natal bone development and metabolism, while its relevance during fetal bone development is uncertain. To study this, pregnant mice were made hypothyroid and fetuses harvested at embryonic days (E) 12.5, 14.5, 16.5 and 18.5. Despite a marked reduction in fetal tissue concentration of both T4 and T3, bone development, as assessed at the distal epiphyseal growth plate of the femur and vertebra, was largely preserved up to E16.5. Only at E18.5, the hypothyroid fetuses exhibited a reduction in femoral type I and type X collagen and osteocalcin mRNA levels, in the length and area of the proliferative and hypertrophic zones, in the number of chondrocytes per proliferative column, and in the number of hypertrophic chondrocytes, in addition to a slight delay in endochondral and intramembranous ossification. This suggests that up to E16.5, thyroid hormone signaling in bone is kept to a minimum. In fact, measuring the expression level of the activating and inactivating iodothyronine deiodinases (D2 and D3) helped understand how this is achieved. D3 mRNA was readily detected as early as E14.5 and its expression decreased markedly ( approximately 10-fold) at E18.5, and even more at 14 days after birth (P14). In contrast, D2 mRNA expression increased significantly by E18.5 and markedly ( approximately 2.5-fold) by P14. The reciprocal expression levels of D2 and D3 genes during early bone development along with the absence of a hypothyroidism-induced bone phenotype at this time suggest that coordinated reciprocal deiodinase expression keeps thyroid hormone signaling in bone to very low levels at this early stage of bone development.

  7. Deiodinase-mediated thyroid hormone inactivation minimizes thyroid hormone signaling in the early development of fetal skeleton

    PubMed Central

    Capelo, Luciane P.; Beber, Eduardo H.; Huang, Stephen A.; Zorn, Telma M.T.; Bianco, Antonio C.; Gouveia, Cecília H.A.

    2015-01-01

    Thyroid hormone (TH) plays a key role on post-natal bone development and metabolism, while its relevance during fetal bone development is uncertain. To study this, pregnant mice were made hypothyroid and fetuses harvested at embryonic days (E) 12.5, 14.5, 16.5 and 18.5. Despite a marked reduction in fetal tissue concentration of both T4 and T3, bone development, as assessed at the distal epiphyseal growth plate of the femur and vertebra, was largely preserved up to E16.5. Only at E18.5, the hypothyroid fetuses exhibited a reduction in femoral type I and type X collagen and osteocalcin mRNA levels, in the length and area of the proliferative and hypertrophic zones, in the number of chondrocytes per proliferative column, and in the number of hypertrophic chondrocytes, in addition to a slight delay in endochondral and intramembranous ossification. This suggests that up to E16.5, thyroid hormone signaling in bone is kept to a minimum. In fact, measuring the expression level of the activating and inactivating iodothyronine deiodinases (D2 and D3) helped understand how this is achieved. D3 mRNA was readily detected as early as E14.5 and its expression decreased markedly (~ 10-fold) at E18.5, and even more at 14 days after birth (P14). In contrast, D2 mRNA expression increased significantly by E18.5 and markedly (~2.5-fold) by P14. The reciprocal expression levels of D2 and D3 genes during early bone development along with the absence of a hypothyroidism-induced bone phenotype at this time suggest that coordinated reciprocal deiodinase expression keeps thyroid hormone signaling in bone to very low levels at this early stage of bone development. PMID:18682303

  8. Heritable bovine fetal abnormalities.

    PubMed

    Whitlock, B K; Kaiser, L; Maxwell, H S

    2008-08-01

    The etiologies for congenital bovine fetal anomalies can be divided into heritable, toxic, nutritional, and infectious categories. Although uncommon in most herds, inherited congenital anomalies are probably present in all breeds of cattle and propagated as a result of specific trait selection that inadvertently results in propagation of the defect. In some herds, the occurrence of inherited anomalies has become frequent, and economically important. Anomalous traits can affect animals in a range of ways, some being lethal or requiring euthanasia on humane grounds, others altering structure, function, or performance of affected animals. Veterinary practitioners should be aware of the potential for inherited defects, and be prepared to investigate and report animals exhibiting abnormal characteristics. This review will discuss the morphologic characteristics, mode of inheritance, breeding lines affected, and the availability of genetic testing for selected heritable bovine fetal abnormalities.

  9. From prenatal genomic diagnosis to fetal personalized medicine: progress and challenges

    PubMed Central

    Bianchi, Diana W

    2015-01-01

    Thus far, the focus of personalized medicine has been the prevention and treatment of conditions that affect adults. Although advances in genetic technology have been applied more frequently to prenatal diagnosis than to fetal treatment, genetic and genomic information is beginning to influence pregnancy management. Recent developments in sequencing the fetal genome combined with progress in understanding fetal physiology using gene expression arrays indicate that we could have the technical capabilities to apply an individualized medicine approach to the fetus. Here I review recent advances in prenatal genetic diagnostics, the challenges associated with these new technologies and how the information derived from them can be used to advance fetal care. Historically, the goal of prenatal diagnosis has been to provide an informed choice to prospective parents. We are now at a point where that goal can and should be expanded to incorporate genetic, genomic and transcriptomic data to develop new approaches to fetal treatment. PMID:22772565

  10. Progestin treatment does not affect expression of cytokines, steroid receptors, oxytocin receptor, and cyclooxygenase 2 in fetal membranes and endometrium from pony mares at parturition.

    PubMed

    Palm, F; Walter, I; Nowotny, N; Budik, S; Helmreich, M; Aurich, C

    2013-01-01

    In most mammalian species, progestins have a major function in maintaining pregnancy. In humans, the physiologic initiation of parturition bears similarities with inflammatory processes and anti-inflammatory effects of progestins have been suggested to postpone birth until term. To examine if comparable effects exist in the horse, mares were treated with the synthetic progestin altrenogest from day 280 of gestation until parturition (N = 5) or were left untreated as controls (N = 7). Tissue from the amnion (AMN), allantochorion (AC), and endometrium (EM) was collected at foaling and mRNA expression of interleukin (IL)-6 and -8, cyclooxygenase 2 (COX2), estrogen receptor (ER) α, progesterone receptor, and oxytocin receptor (OTR) was analyzed. Leukocytes, steroid receptors, COX2, and OTR were also investigated by histology and immunohistochemistry. Expression of mRNA for IL-6 was higher in AMN and EM versus AC (P < 0.01). Expression of IL-8 was higher in AMN than AC and EM (P < 0.001). Steroid receptors and OTR were highly expressed in EM but not in AMN and AC (P < 0.001). Expression of COX2 was most pronounced in AC whereas IL expression was not upregulated in AC. No differences in mRNA expression existed between altrenogest-treated and control animals. Endometrial polymorphonuclear leukocytes were increased in altrenogest-treated mares. Epithelial cells of all tissues, except AC chorionic villi stained progesterone receptor-positive. Staining for ER was more pronounced in the amnion facing epithelium of the AC in altrenogest-treated versus control animals (P < 0.01). In conclusion, COX2 is highly expressed in the AC. The fetal membranes thus might play a role in the onset of labor in the horse. Altrenogest did not affect gene expression in the AMN, AC, and EM but had localized effects on inflammatory cells and ER expression. No anti-inflammatory effects of altrenogest in healthy, late pregnant pony mares could be detected.

  11. Identification of differentially expressed microRNAs and the possible role of miRNA-126* in Sprague-Dawley rats during fetal lung development.

    PubMed

    Yang, Yang; Pu, Xiao-Dan; Qing, Kan; Guo, Xi-Rong; Zhou, Xiao-Yu; Zhou, Xiao-Guang

    2013-01-01

    The aim of this study was to conduct a search for microRNAs (miRNAs) that are significant in fetal lung develop-ment to lay a foundation for further studies in the relevant fields. In this study, histological observation was performed in rats by hematoxylin and eosin (H&E) staining at three time points of fetal lung development [Embryo 21 (E21), E19 and E16, and designated as groups S1, S2 and S3, respectively]. An expression profile for fetal lung development was determined using the latest microarray technology. Furthermore, certain differentially expressed miRNAs were selected for further study by real‑time PCR. In total, 202 differentially expressed miRNAs were identified. Among them, miRNA-126* was selected for further study and validated by real-time PCR due to its higher expression levels in the microarrays. The results revealed that the relative expression of miRNA-126* differentially increased as embyronic development increased (P<0.05), which was consistent with the microarray results. In conclusion, we hypothesize that these newly identified miRNAs (including miRNA-126*) may be important in the physiological mechanisms during fetal lung development. These results may aid future studies of neonatal lung development.

  12. Fetal breathing movements: antepartum monitoring of fetal condition.

    PubMed

    Manning, F A; Platt, L D

    1979-08-01

    Until recently, the relative inaccessibility of the human fetus to physical assessment has made antepartum assessment of its condition difficult. The development of methods for accurate antepartum fetal heart rate monitoring and the subsequent study of heart rate responses to various stimuli have resulted in a significant improvement in accuracy of antepartum fetal surveillance. The development of real time B-mode ultrasound enables the clinician to assess many additional fetal biophysical variables including fetal breathing movements. In our observations, the combination of heart rate and fetal breathing assessment has produced a significant improvement in differentiating the normal from the compromised fetus. The addition of other biophysical variables (tone, movements and amniotic fluid volume) have further refined the ability to identify the fetus at risk. At this point, we have evaluated only a few of many possible variables. It seems probable that, as other fetal biophysical variables are included with the overall assessment, for example fetal reflexes or fetal biophysical response to exogenous stimuli, the identification of the fetus at risk and the quantitation of the magnitude of risk will become increasingly more precise.

  13. Fetal Macrosomia

    MedlinePlus

    ... previously been diagnosed with diabetes, after childbirth your health care provider will test you for the condition. During future pregnancies, you'll be closely monitored for signs and symptoms of gestational diabetes — a type ... health care provider suspects fetal macrosomia during your pregnancy, you ...

  14. Maternal nutrient restriction during early fetal kidney development attenuates the renal innate inflammatory response in obese young adult offspring.

    PubMed

    Sharkey, Don; Gardner, David S; Symonds, Michael E; Budge, Helen

    2009-11-01

    Obesity is an independent risk factor for developing chronic kidney disease. Toll-like receptor 4 (TLR4), interleukin (IL)-18, and uncoupling protein 2 (UCP2) are important components of the innate immune system mediating inflammatory renal damage. Early to midgestation maternal nutrient restriction appears to protect the kidney from the deleterious effects of early onset obesity, although the mechanisms remain unclear. We examined the combined effects of gestational maternal nutrient restriction during early fetal kidney development and early onset obesity on the renal innate immune response in offspring. Pregnant sheep were randomly assigned to a normal (control, 100%) or nutrient-restricted (NR, 50%) diet from days 30 to 80 gestation and 100% thereafter. Offspring were killed humanely at 7 days or, following rearing in an obesogenic environment, at 1 yr of age, and renal tissues were collected. IL-18 and TLR4 expression were strongly correlated irrespective of intervention. Seven-day NR offspring had significantly lower relative renal mass and IL-18 mRNA expression. At 1 yr of age, obesity resulted in increased mRNA abundance of TLR4, IL-18, and UCP2, coupled with tubular atrophy and greater immunohistological staining of glomerular IL-6 and medullary tumor necrosis factor (TNF)-alpha. NR obese offspring had a marked reduction of TLR4 abundance and renal IL-6 staining. In conclusion, maternal nutrient restriction during early fetal kidney development attenuates the effects of early onset obesity-related nephropathy, in part, through the downregulation of the innate inflammatory response. A better understanding of maternal nutrition and the in utero nutritional environment may offer therapeutic strategies aimed at reducing the burden of later kidney disease.

  15. Ongoing neural development of affective theory of mind in adolescence.

    PubMed

    Vetter, Nora C; Weigelt, Sarah; Döhnel, Katrin; Smolka, Michael N; Kliegel, Matthias

    2014-07-01

    Affective Theory of Mind (ToM), an important aspect of ToM, involves the understanding of affective mental states. This ability is critical in the developmental phase of adolescence, which is often related with socio-emotional problems. Using a developmentally sensitive behavioral task in combination with functional magnetic resonance imaging, the present study investigated the neural development of affective ToM throughout adolescence. Eighteen adolescent (ages 12-14 years) and 18 young adult women (aged 19-25 years) were scanned while evaluating complex affective mental states depicted by actors in video clips. The ventromedial prefrontal cortex (vmPFC) showed significantly stronger activation in adolescents in comparison to adults in the affective ToM condition. Current results indicate that the vmPFC might be involved in the development of affective ToM processing in adolescence.

  16. Study for collecting background data on Wistar Hannover [Crl:WI(Han)] rats in embryo-fetal development studies--comparative data to Sprague Dawley rats.

    PubMed

    Noritake, Ken-ichi; Ikeda, Takashi; Ito, Keiichi; Miwa, Yoji; Senuma, Mika; Takashima, Hiromasa; Tateishi, Taishi; Hisada, Shigeru; Maki, Eiji

    2013-01-01

    The purpose of the present study was to collect the background data on Wistar Hannover [Crl:WI(Han)] (hereafter Wistar Han) rats in embryo-fetal development studies from the 6 safety research facilities of pharmaceutical companies and contract research organizations. In each facility, 20 or 22 female rats were dosed with vehicle solution during the organogenesis period. As a result, no abnormalities in clinical signs and necropsy findings in dams were found. Body weights and food consumption in dams were lower than those in Sprague Dawley (SD) rats. The number of corpora lutea (13.3 vs. 16.0 in SD) and implantations (11.8 vs. 14.7) were fewer, and fetal body weights (3.66 vs. 3.70) and placental weights (0.42 vs. 0.45) tended to be lower than those in SD rats. Regarding the fetal abnormalities, the incidence of several findings such as the persistent left umbilical artery (10.4% vs. 1.1%) and cervical (5.2% vs. 0.4%), full (7.4% vs. 0.9%) or short supernumerary (64.5% vs. 9.9%) and wavy ribs (6.6% vs. 0.3%) was higher than that in SD rats. Our present study showed that they maintained a sufficient number of live fetuses and the difference in the fetal sex ratio was not observed. In conclusion, Wistar Han rats were considered to be a suitable strain for embryo-fetal development toxicity study. Since the incidence of several abnormalities was higher than that in SD rats, it may be said that to accumulate background control data is important to evaluate the embryo-fetal development toxicity study using Wistar Han rats.

  17. Role of the placenta in fetal programming: underlying mechanisms and potential interventional approaches.

    PubMed

    Jansson, Thomas; Powell, Theresa L

    2007-07-01

    Adverse influences during fetal life alter the structure and function of distinct cells, organ systems or homoeostatic pathways, thereby 'programming' the individual for an increased risk of developing cardiovascular disease and diabetes in adult life. Fetal programming can be caused by a number of different perturbations in the maternal compartment, such as altered maternal nutrition and reduced utero-placental blood flow; however, the underlying mechanisms remain to be fully established. Perturbations in the maternal environment must be transmitted across the placenta in order to affect the fetus. Here, we review recent insights into how the placenta responds to changes in the maternal environment and discuss possible mechanisms by which the placenta mediates fetal programming. In IUGR (intrauterine growth restriction) pregnancies, the increased placental vascular resistance subjects the fetal heart to increased work load, representing a possible direct link between altered placental structure and fetal programming of cardiovascular disease. A decreased activity of placental 11beta-HSD-2 (type 2 isoform of 11beta-hydroxysteroid dehydrogenase) activity can increase fetal exposure to maternal cortisol, which programmes the fetus for later hypertension and metabolic disease. The placenta appears to function as a nutrient sensor regulating nutrient transport according to the ability of the maternal supply line to deliver nutrients. By directly regulating fetal nutrient supply and fetal growth, the placenta plays a central role in fetal programming. Furthermore, perturbations in the maternal compartment may affect the methylation status of placental genes and increase placental oxidative/nitrative stress, resulting in changes in placental function. Intervention strategies targeting the placenta in order to prevent or alleviate altered fetal growth and/or fetal programming include altering placental growth and nutrient transport by maternally administered IGFs (insulin

  18. Human fetal keratocytes have multipotent characteristics in the developing avian embryo.

    PubMed

    Chao, Jennifer R; Bronner, Marianne E; Lwigale, Peter Y

    2013-08-01

    The human cornea contains stem cells that can be induced to express markers consistent with multipotency in cell culture; however, there have been no studies demonstrating that human corneal keratocytes are multipotent. The objective of this study is to examine the potential of human fetal keratocytes (HFKs) to differentiate into neural crest-derived tissues when challenged in an embryonic environment. HFKs were injected bilaterally into the cranial mesenchyme adjacent to the neural tube and the periocular mesenchyme in chick embryos at embryonic days 1.5 and 3, respectively. The injected keratocytes were detected by immunofluorescence using the human cell-specific marker, HuNu. HuNu-positive keratocytes injected along the neural crest pathway were localized adjacent to HNK-1-positive migratory host neural crest cells and in the cardiac cushion mesenchyme. The HuNu-positive cells transformed into neural crest derivatives such as smooth muscle in cranial blood vessels, stromal keratocytes, and corneal endothelium. However, they failed to form neurons despite their presence in the condensing trigeminal ganglion. These results show that HFKs retain the ability to differentiate into some neural crest-derived tissues. Their ability to respond to embryonic cues and generate corneal endothelium and stromal keratocytes provides a basis for understanding the feasibility of creating specialized cells for possible use in regenerative medicine.

  19. Cell therapy of pain: Characterization of human fetal chromaffin cells at early adrenal medulla development.

    PubMed

    Zhou, H; Aziza, J; Sol, J C; Courtade-Saïdi, M; Chatelin, S; Evra, C; Parant, O; Lazorthes, Y; Jozan, S

    2006-04-01

    Adult adrenal chromaffin cells are being utilized for therapeutic transplantation. With the prospect of using fetal chromaffin cells in pain therapy, we studied their phenotype, proliferative power, function, and growth in vitro and in situ in order to determine the optimal time for implantation. Between 7 and 10 gestational weeks (GW), we isolated, in vitro, two types of chromaffin cells with a noradrenergic phenotype akin to that observed, in situ. Among the adherent chromaffin cells first observed in vitro, only a few samples expressed met-enkephalin, whereas almost all the neurosphere-like colonies, which appeared later, expressed it. However, neither of the two types of populations expressed an adrenergic phenotype in line with that observed in situ. At the upper limits of the voluntary abortion period authorized in France, this phenotype (12 GW) and met-enkephalin expression (13 GW) were evidenced in situ. For the first time in man, we demonstrate the secretion of noradrenaline in vitro by the two populations of cells. Consistent with this result, we also noted dopamine beta hydroxylase (DbetaH) mRNA expression in vitro and in situ within this period. These observations on the expression of these biological factors indicate that 9-10 GW would be the best stage for sampling these cells for preclinical transplantation experiments.

  20. Pregnancy, obesity and insulin resistance: maternal overnutrition and the target windows of fetal development.

    PubMed

    Muhlhausler, Beverly S; Gugusheff, Jessica R; Ong, Zhi Yi; Vithayathil, Mini A

    2013-09-01

    A substantial body of literature has demonstrated that the nutritional environment an individual experiences before birth or in early infancy is a key determinant of their health outcomes across the life course. This concept, the developmental origins of health and disease (DOHaD) hypothesis, was initially focused on the adverse consequences of exposure to a suboptimal nutrient supply and provided evidence that maternal undernutrition, fetal growth restriction, and low birth weight were associated with heightened risk of central adiposity, insulin resistance, and cardiovascular disease. More recently, the epidemic rise in the incidence of maternal obesity has seen the attention of the DOHaD field turn toward identifying the impact on the offspring of exposure to an excess nutrient supply in early life. The association between maternal obesity and increased risk of obesity in the offspring has been documented in human populations worldwide, and animal models have provided critical insights into the biological mechanisms that drive this relationship. This review will discuss the important roles that programming of the adipocyte and programming of the central neural networks which control appetite and reward play in the early life programming of metabolic disease by maternal overnutrition. It will also highlight the important research gaps and challenges that remain to be addressed and provide a personal perspective on where the field should be heading in the coming 5-10 years.

  1. Strategies for Developing Effective Teaching Skills in the Affective Domain

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hansen, Ken

    2009-01-01

    Perhaps more than any other academic discipline, physical education holds the highest potential for teaching affective skills. By its very nature, the typical physical education setting offers countless teachable moments and opportunities to capitalize on the development of affective skills. The seeming lack of attention given to affective…

  2. The Development of the Meta-Affective Trait Scale

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Uzuntiryaki-Kondakci, Esen; Kirbulut, Zubeyde Demet

    2016-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to develop a Meta-Affective Trait Scale (MATS) to measure the meta-affective inclinations related to emotions that students have while they are studying for their classes. First, a pilot study was performed with 380 10th-grade students. Results of the exploratory factor analysis supported a two-factor structure of the…

  3. Endocrine differentiation of fetal ovaries and testes of the spotted hyena (Crocuta crocuta): timing of androgen-independent versus androgen-driven genital development.

    PubMed

    Browne, P; Place, N J; Vidal, J D; Moore, I T; Cunha, G R; Glickman, S E; Conley, A J

    2006-10-01

    Female spotted hyenas (Crocuta crocuta) have an erectile peniform clitoris and a pseudoscrotum but no external vagina, all established by day 35 of a 110-day gestation. Recent studies indicate that these events are androgen-independent, although androgen secretion by fetal ovaries and testis was hypothesized previously to induce phallic development in both sexes. We present the first data relating to the capacity of the ovaries and testes of the spotted hyena to synthesize androgens at different stages of fetal life. Specifically, spotted hyena fetal gonads were examined by immunohistochemistry at GD 30, 45, 48, 65, and 95 for androgen-synthesizing enzymes, as related to the morphological development. Enzymes included 17alpha-hydroxylase/17,20-lyase cytochrome P450 (P450c17), cytochrome b5, 3beta-hydroxysteroid dehydrogenase (3betaHSD), and cholesterol side-chain cleavage cytochrome P450 (P450scc). Anti-Müllerian-hormone (AMH) expression was also examined. AMH was strongly expressed in fetal Sertoli cells from GD 30 and after. P450c17 expression was detected in Leydig cells of developing testes and surprisingly in Müllerian duct epithelium. Fetal ovaries began to organize and differentiate by GD 45, and medullary cells expressed P450c17, cytochrome b5, 3betaHSD, and P450scc. The findings support the hypothesis that external genital morphology is probably androgen-independent initially, but that fetal testicular androgens modify the secondary, male-specific phallic form and accessory organs. Fetal ovaries appear to develop substantial androgen-synthesizing capacity but not until phallic differentiation is complete, i.e. after GD 45 based on circulating androstenedione concentrations. During late gestation, fetal ovaries and testes synthesize androgens, possibly organizing the neural substrates of aggressive behaviors observed at birth in spotted hyenas. These data provide an endocrine rationale for sexual dimorphisms in phallic structure and reveal a potential

  4. Fetal cell microchimerism develops through the migration of fetus-derived cells to the maternal organs early after implantation.

    PubMed

    Sunami, Rei; Komuro, Mayuko; Yuminamochi, Tsutomu; Hoshi, Kazuhiko; Hirata, Shuji

    2010-03-01

    Fetus-derived cells are present in the blood and tissues of the maternal body over a long period of time, even after delivery, resulting in fetal cell microchimerism. The exact process by which fetal cells cross the placental barrier to enter the maternal circulation is unclear. The objective of this paper was to determine the time during pregnancy that fetal cells with multilineage potential migrate to the maternal organs. Wild type female mice were crossbred with male transgenic mice, expressing enhanced green fluorescent protein (EGFP). Total hysterectomies were performed at different time points of pregnancy. On day 60 after surgery, mice were injected with either streptozotocin (STZ) to induce insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus, or vehicle. Detection and quantification of fetal cells were then undertaken in a variety of maternal organs via fluorescent microscopy and quantitative PCR amplification of the gfp transgene. In vehicle control mice, fetal cells were detected only in the maternal bone marrow. However on day 30 after STZ injection, fetal cells were detected not only in bone marrow but also in the maternal pancreas, liver and kidney. Histological analysis showed differentiated fetal cells within the pancreatic acinar cells, hepatocytes and tubular epithelial cells. Their morphological appearance was indistinguishable from their maternal counterparts, and their frequency in these organs was constant, regardless of the timing of hysterectomy. These results indicate that most fetal cells with multilineage potential in maternal tissues migrate to the maternal body early after implantation, and thereafter sustain their population over the long term after delivery.

  5. Climatic conditions, twining and frequency of milking as factors affecting the risk of fetal losses in high-yielding Holstein cows in a hot environment.

    PubMed

    Mellado, Miguel; López, Ricardo; de Santiago, Ángeles; Veliz, Francisco G; Macías-Cruz, Ulises; Avendaño-Reyes, Leonel; García, José Eduardo

    An epidemiological study of risk factors for fetal losses was carried out on 62,403 high-yielding Holstein cows in 29 large highly technified dairy herds in northern Mexico (25° N; 23.5 °C mean annual temperature). Multivariate multiple-group response model indicated that fetal losses between 43 and 260 days of pregnancy were 23 %. Heat-stressed cows at conception (temperature-humidity index, THI >82) were 14 times more likely (P < 0.01) to present fetal losses than not heat-stressed cows (27 vs. 18 %). Heat-stressed cows at 60 days of pregnancy (THI >82) were 4.5 times more likely (P < 0.01) to present fetal losses than cows suffering heat stress in early gestation (29.1 vs. 17.7 %). The proportion of cows experiencing fetal loss was lower for multiparous than primiparous cows (odds ratio; OR = 0.7). Cows with twin pregnancies had significantly increased chances of losing their fetuses than cows with a single fetus (33.6 vs. 20.7 %; P < 0.01). Cows with three milkings per day were 30 % more likely (P < 0.01) to lose their fetuses than cows milked twice daily. Cows calving in winter and spring had significantly increased chances of losing their fetuses than cows calving in summer and fall (30-35 vs. 4-5 %; P < 0.01). It was concluded that, in this particular environment, heat stress exert a great influence on fetal losses in high producing Holstein cows.

  6. MALFORMATIONS IN GUBERNACULAR LIGAMENT DEVELOPMENT INDUCED BY DEHP, DBP, AND BBP ARE ASSOCIATED WITH DECREASES IN INSL3 GENE EXPRESSION IN THE FETAL RAT TESTIS

    EPA Science Inventory

    Malformations in gubernacular ligament development induced by DEHP, DBP, and BBP are associated with decreases in insl3 gene expression in the fetal rat testis.
    Vickie S.Wilson, Christy Lambright, Johnathan Furr, Carmen Wood, Gary Held, L. Earl Gray Jr. U.S. EPA, ORD, NHEER...

  7. Observation of Classroom Social Communication: Do Children with Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders Spend Their Time Differently than Their Typically Developing Peers?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Olswang, Lesley B.; Svensson, Liselotte; Astley, Susan

    2010-01-01

    Purpose: In this research, the authors examined how social communication profiles during classroom activities differed between children with fetal alcohol spectrum disorders (FASD) and typically developing pair-matched peers. Method: Twelve pairs of children were observed in their classrooms 20 min a day for 4 days across 2 weeks. Coders…

  8. The effect of maternal exposure to endocrine disrupting chemicals on fetal and neonatal development: A review on the major concerns.

    PubMed

    Mallozzi, Maddalena; Bordi, Giulia; Garo, Chiara; Caserta, Donatella

    2016-09-01

    There is a widespread exposure of general population, including pregnant women and developing fetuses, to the endocrine disrupting chemicals (EDCs). These chemicals have been reported to be present in urine, blood serum, breast milk, and amniotic fluid. Endocrine disruptions induced by environmental toxicants have placed a heavy burden on society, since environmental exposures during critical periods of development can permanently reprogram normal physiological responses, thereby increasing susceptibility to disease later in life-a process known as developmental reprogramming. During development, organogenesis and tissue differentiation occur through a continuous series of tightly-regulated and precisely-timed molecular, biochemical, and cellular events. Humans may encounter EDCs daily and during all stages of life, from conception and fetal development through adulthood and senescence. Nevertheless, prenatal and early postnatal windows are the most critical for proper development, due to rapid changes in system growth. Although there are still gaps in our knowledge, currently available data support the urgent need for health and environmental policies aimed at protecting the public and, in particular, the developing fetus and women of reproductive age. Birth Defects Research (Part C) 108:224-242, 2016. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  9. Development of axonal pathways in the human fetal fronto-limbic brain: histochemical characterization and diffusion tensor imaging.

    PubMed

    Vasung, Lana; Huang, Hao; Jovanov-Milošević, Nataša; Pletikos, Mihovil; Mori, Susumu; Kostović, Ivica

    2010-10-01

    The development of cortical axonal pathways in the human brain begins during the transition between the embryonic and fetal period, happens in a series of sequential events, and leads to the establishment of major long trajectories by the neonatal period. We have correlated histochemical markers (acetylcholinesterase (AChE) histochemistry, antibody against synaptic protein SNAP-25 (SNAP-25-immunoreactivity) and neurofilament 200) with the diffusion tensor imaging (DTI) database in order to make a reconstruction of the origin, growth pattern and termination of the pathways in the period between 8 and 34 postconceptual weeks (PCW). Histological sections revealed that the initial outgrowth and formation of joined trajectories of subcortico-frontal pathways (external capsule, cerebral stalk-internal capsule) and limbic bundles (fornix, stria terminalis, amygdaloid radiation) occur by 10 PCW. As early as 11 PCW, major afferent fibers invade the corticostriatal junction. At 13-14 PCW, axonal pathways from the thalamus and basal forebrain approach the deep moiety of the cortical plate, causing the first lamination. The period between 15 and 18 PCW is dominated by elaboration of the periventricular crossroads, sagittal strata and spread of fibers in the subplate and marginal zone. Tracing of fibers in the subplate with DTI is unsuccessful due to the isotropy of this zone. Penetration of the cortical plate occurs after 24-26 PCW. In conclusion, frontal axonal pathways form the periventricular crossroads, sagittal strata and 'waiting' compartments during the path-finding and penetration of the cortical plate. Histochemistry is advantageous in the demonstration of a growth pattern, whereas DTI is unique for demonstrating axonal trajectories. The complexity of fibers is the biological substrate of selective vulnerability of the fetal white matter.

  10. Rasch scaling procedures for informing development of a valid Fetal Surveillance Education Program multiple-choice assessment

    PubMed Central

    Zoanetti, Nathan; Griffin, Patrick; Beaves, Mark; Wallace, Euan M

    2009-01-01

    Background It is widely recognised that deficiencies in fetal surveillance practice continue to contribute significantly to the burden of adverse outcomes. This has prompted the development of evidence-based clinical practice guidelines by the Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists and an associated Fetal Surveillance Education Program to deliver the associated learning. This article describes initial steps in the validation of a corresponding multiple-choice assessment of the relevant educational outcomes through a combination of item response modelling and expert judgement. Methods The Rasch item response model was employed for item and test analysis and to empirically derive the substantive interpretation of the assessment variable. This interpretation was then compared to the hierarchy of competencies specified a priori by a team of eight subject-matter experts. Classical Test Theory analyses were also conducted. Results A high level of agreement between the hypothesised and derived variable provided evidence of construct validity. Item and test indices from Rasch analysis and Classical Test Theory analysis suggested that the current test form was of moderate quality. However, the analyses made clear the required steps for establishing a valid assessment of sufficient psychometric quality. These steps included: increasing the number of items from 40 to 50 in the first instance, reviewing ineffective items, targeting new items to specific content and difficulty gaps, and formalising the assessment blueprint in light of empirical information relating item structure to item difficulty. Conclusion The application of the Rasch model for criterion-referenced assessment validation with an expert stakeholder group is herein described. Recommendations for subsequent item and test construction are also outlined in this article. PMID:19402898

  11. An investigation of the conus medullaris termination level during the period of fetal development to adulthood.

    PubMed

    Malas, M A; Salbacak, A; Büyükmumcu, M; Seker, M; Köylüoğlu, B; Karabulut, A K

    2001-10-01

    The spinal cord fills the length of the vertebral canal at the early period of intrauterine term. It is reported to extend to the level of the third lumbar vertebra at birth, because the vertebral column is growing more rapidly in the longitudinal direction than the spinal cord. The present investigation aimed to determine the changes in the termination level of conus medullaris (TLCM) from fetus to adulthood in a total of 285 individuals who had no defects in the central or peripheral nervous system, and were obtained from our Faculties of Medicine and Konya Maternity Hospital between 1992-1995. The age distribution was as follows: 36 fetuses, 20 prematures and 50 neonates, 51 children aged 1 to 7 years and 128 adults aged 15 to 68 years. In this study, for fetuses, prematures, neonates and children the TLCM was determined using ultrasonography. In addition, microdissection was used in fetuses to confirm the results obtained from the above technique. Also, magnetic resonance imaging was used in adults. During fetal life the end of the conus altered its levels from S5 to L3 vertebrae. The tip of the conus medullaris of the prematures and neonates ranged from L1 to L3 vertebrae. The tip of the conus medullaris in the children lay between the Th12 and L3 vertebrae, and in the adults it was between the Th12 and L2 vertebrae. There were slight differences between the prematures and neonates in terms of the TLCM. We concluded that there are differences in the TLCM between the age groups and therefore, especially in prematures and infants the determination of the tip of conus medullaris might be important for preventing postoperative neurological complications.

  12. Recent progress in understanding the pathogenesis of fetal and neonatal alloimmune thrombocytopenia.

    PubMed

    Curtis, Brian R

    2015-12-01

    Fetal and neonatal alloimmune thrombocytopenia (FNAIT) occurs in c. 1 in 1000 births and is caused by maternal antibodies against human platelet alloantigens that bind incompatible fetal platelets and promote their clearance from the circulation. Affected infants can experience bleeding, bruising and, in severe cases, intracranial haemorrhage and even death. As maternal screening is not routinely performed, and first pregnancies can be affected, most cases are diagnosed at delivery of a first affected pregnancy. Unlike its erythrocyte counterpart, Haemolytic Disease of the Fetus and Newborn, there is no prophylactic treatment for FNAIT. This report will review recent advances made in understanding the pathogenesis of FNAIT: the platelet alloantigens involved, maternal exposure and sensitization to fetal platelet antigens, properties of platelet Immunoglobulin G antibodies, maternal-fetal antibody transport mechanisms and efforts to develop an effective FNAIT prophylaxis.

  13. CD99 Is Strongly Expressed in Basal Cells of the Normal Adult Epidermis and Some Subpopulations of Appendages: Comparison with Developing Fetal Skin

    PubMed Central

    Choi, Gawon; Roh, Jin; Park, Chan-Sik

    2016-01-01

    Background CD99 is a cell surface transmembrane glycoprotein expressed in various tissues. CD99 is differentially expressed between subpopulations of each tissue and is highly expressed in certain hematopoietic and precursor cells. However, there has been no comprehensive study of CD99 expression in normal skin. We evaluated CD99 expression in normal human skin and developing fetal skin. Methods Seventy-five adult skin samples containing normal skin and eight fetal skin samples of different gestational ages were collected. CD99 immunohistochemical staining was performed to evaluate expression pattern in adult and fetal skin samples. CD99 and CD34 expression were compared by double immunofluorescence. Results In normal adult skin, CD99 was strongly expressed in the membrane of epidermal basal keratinocytes, hair follicle bulges and outer root sheaths, and inner secretory cells of eccrine sweat glands. In fetal skin, CD99 was not expressed on the periderm at 16 weeks of gestation but was expressed in basal cells of fetal skin at around 19 weeks of gestation. CD99 expression became comparable to that of the adult skin after 20 weeks of gestation. CD99 and CD34 were co-expressed in hair follicle outer root sheaths, as seen by double immunofluorescence study. Conclusions This is the first study examining CD99 expression pattern in normal adult and fetal skin. CD99 tends to be expressed in the basal/precursor cells of epidermis and in hair follicles. These results provide a basis for future investigation on functions of CD99 in the skin and provide a novel potential target for the treatment of dermatologic lesions. PMID:27498544

  14. Injury effects of ginkgolide B on maturation of mouse oocytes, fertilization, and fetal development in vitro and in vivo.

    PubMed

    Shiao, Nion-Heng; Chan, Wen-Hsiung

    2009-07-10

    Ginkgolide B (GKB), the major active component of Ginkgo biloba extracts, exerts both stimulatory and inhibitory effects on apoptotic signaling. Previous studies by our group demonstrated that ginkgolide treatment of mouse blastocysts induces apoptosis, decreases cell number, hinders early postimplantation blastocyst development, and increases early-stage blastocyst death. Here, we further investigate the effects of GKB on oocyte maturation, and subsequent pre- and postimplantation development in vitro and in vivo. In our experiments, GKB induced a significant reduction in the rate of oocyte maturation, fertilization, and in vitro embryonic development. Treatment of oocytes with 1-6 microM GKB during in vitro maturation (IVM) led to increased resorption of postimplantation embryos and decreased placental and fetal weights. Data obtained using an in vivo mouse model further disclosed that consumption of drinking water containing 3-6 microM GKB led to decreased oocyte maturation and in vitro fertilization, as well as early embryo developmental injury, specifically, inhibition of development to the blastocyst stage in vivo. To our knowledge, this is the first study to investigate the impact of GKB on maturation of mouse oocytes, fertilization, and sequential embryonic development.

  15. Maternal stress retards fetal development in mice with transcriptome-wide impact on gene expression profiles of the limb.

    PubMed

    Choe, Han Kyoung; Son, Gi Hoon; Chung, Sooyoung; Kim, Myungjin; Sun, Woong; Kim, Hyun; Geum, Dongho; Kim, Kyungjin

    2011-03-01

    The environment of a pregnant mother has a life-long impact on later life of offspring. Maternal stress is known to cause low birth weight and programs several physiological dysfunctions in offspring. However, the direct effects of maternal stress on the developing fetus remain largely unknown. The present study focused on the effect of chronic maternal stress on the developmental program and its molecular mechanisms. Pregnant mice were given 6-hour immobilization stress every day from 8.5 days post coitum. Fetal body weight was significantly decreased by maternal stress throughout development. Importantly, developmental events were retarded in the stressed fetuses. Around embryonic day 13.5 (E13.5), the developmental increment of somite numbers was delayed, although this difference recovered by E15.5. Limb bud formation and regression of interdigital webbing were also retarded by approximately 0.5 days. Subsequently, transcriptomes of developing limbs were analyzed by cDNA microarrays. Approximately, one-tenth of detected transcripts were significantly influenced by maternal stress. Q-PCR AQ analyses further demonstrated that the expression of a subset of limb development-associated genes, including Igf1, Aldh1a2, and Acta1, was changed in the stressed fetus. In conclusion, our findings suggest that maternal stress can retard limb and somite development in mice, with profound impacts on the developmental genetic program of limb.

  16. Fetal electrocardiograph

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rios, Heriberto; Andrade, Armando; Puente, Ernestina; Lizana, Pablo R.; Mendoza, Diego

    2002-11-01

    The high intra-uterine death rate is due to failure in appropriately diagnosing some problems in the cardiobreathing system of the fetus during pregnancy. The electrocardiograph is one apparatus which might detect problems at an early stage. With electrodes located near the womb and uterus, in a way similar to the normal technique, the detection of so-called biopotential differences, caused by concentrations of ions, can be achieved. The fetal electrocardiograph is based on an ultrasound technique aimed at detecting intrauterine problems in pregnant women, because it is a noninvasive technique due to the very low level of ultrasound power used. With this system, the following tests can be done: Heart movements from the ninth week onwards; Rapid and safe diagnosis of intrauterine fetal death; Location and size of the placenta. The construction of the fetal electrocardiograph requires instrument level components directly mounted on the printed circuit board, in order to avoid stray capacitance in the cabling which prevents the detection of the E.C.G. activity. The low cost of the system makes it affordable to low budget institutions; in contrast, available commercial systems are priced in U.S. Dollars. (To be presented in Spanish.)

  17. Endocrine interactions in the control of fetal growth.

    PubMed

    Fowden, Abigail L; Forhead, Alison J

    2013-01-01

    Hormones are both growth stimulatory and growth inhibitory in utero. They act as environmental and maturational signals in regulating tissue accretion and differentiation during late gestation. They ensure that fetal development is appropriate for the nutrient supply and is optimal for neonatal survival. Growth-stimulatory hormones, such as insulin, the insulin-like growth factors and the thyroid hormones, have anabolic effects on fetal metabolism and increase cellular nutrient uptake and energy production for tissue accretion. Thyroid hormones also have specific effects on tissue differentiation at key developmental milestones. Similarly, leptin appears to affect development of specific fetal tissues and may counterbalance the maturational actions of other hormones near term. Glucocorticoids inhibit growth in utero but are essential for prepartum tissue differentiation in preparation for delivery. They also affect fetal bioavailability of most of the other growth-regulatory hormones. In addition, many of these hormones alter the placental capacity to supply nutrients for fetal growth. In producing a fetoplacental epigenome specific to the prevailing intrauterine environment, hormones interact to produce phenotypical diversity with potential health consequences long after birth.

  18. Cytotoxic effects of CdSe quantum dots on maturation of mouse oocytes, fertilization, and fetal development.

    PubMed

    Hsieh, Ming-Shu; Shiao, Nion-Heng; Chan, Wen-Hsiung

    2009-05-14

    Quantum dots (QDs) are useful novel luminescent markers, but their embryonic toxicity is yet to be fully established, particularly in oocyte maturation and sperm fertilization. Earlier experiments by our group show that CdSe-core QDs have cytotoxic effects on mouse blastocysts and are associated with defects in subsequent development. Here, we further investigate the influence of CdSe-core QDs on oocyte maturation, fertilization, and subsequent pre- and postimplantation development. CdSe-core QDs induced a significant reduction in the rates of oocyte maturation, fertilization, and in vitro embryo development, but not ZnS-coated CdSe QDs. Treatment of oocytes with 500 nM CdSe-core QDs during in vitro maturation (IVM) led to increased resorption of postimplantation embryos and decreased placental and fetal weights. To our knowledge, this is the first study to report the negative impact of CdSe-core QDs on mouse oocyte development. Moreover, surface modification of CdSe-core QDs with ZnS effectively prevented this cytotoxicity.

  19. Role of Insulinlike Growth Factor 1 in Fetal Development and in the Early Postnatal Life of Premature Infants.

    PubMed

    Hellström, Ann; Ley, David; Hansen-Pupp, Ingrid; Hallberg, Boubou; Ramenghi, Luca A; Löfqvist, Chatarina; Smith, Lois E H; Hård, Anna-Lena

    2016-09-01

    The neonatal period of very preterm infants is often characterized by a difficult adjustment to extrauterine life, with an inadequate nutrient supply and insufficient levels of growth factors, resulting in poor growth and a high morbidity rate. Long-term multisystem complications include cognitive, behavioral, and motor dysfunction as a result of brain damage as well as visual and hearing deficits and metabolic disorders that persist into adulthood. Insulinlike growth factor 1 (IGF-1) is a major regulator of fetal growth and development of most organs especially the central nervous system including the retina. Glucose metabolism in the developing brain is controlled by IGF-1 which also stimulates differentiation and prevents apoptosis. Serum concentrations of IGF-1 decrease to very low levels after very preterm birth and remain low for most of the perinatal development. Strong correlations have been found between low neonatal serum concentrations of IGF-1 and poor brain and retinal growth as well as poor general growth with multiorgan morbidities, such as intraventricular hemorrhage, retinopathy of prematurity, bronchopulmonary dysplasia, and necrotizing enterocolitis. Experimental and clinical studies indicate that early supplementation with IGF-1 can improve growth in catabolic states and reduce brain injury after hypoxic/ischemic events. A multicenter phase II study is currently underway to determine whether intravenous replacement of human recombinant IGF-1 up to normal intrauterine serum concentrations can improve growth and development and reduce prematurity-associated morbidities.

  20. The development of a multichannel atomic magnetometer array for fetal magnetocardiography

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wylie, Robert, IV

    Biomagnetic signals can provide important information about electrical processes in the human body. Because of the small signal sizes, magnetic detection is generally used where other detection methods are incomplete or insufficiently sensitive. One important example is fetal magnetocardiography (fMCG), where the detection of magnetic signals is currently the only available technique for certain clinical applications, such as the detection of cardiac arrhythmia. Until now, magnetometers based on superconducting quantum interference devices (SQUIDs), which can operate at sensitivities down to 1 fT Hz-1/2 have been the only option. The low Tc superconductors and associated cryogenics required for the most sensitive devices has led to interest in alternative technologies. In the last decade, atomic magnetometers operating in the spin-exchange relaxation-free (SERF) regime have demonstrated a higher sensitivity than SQUIDs while operating near room temperature. Though large SERF magnetometer arrays have not yet been built, smaller arrays should be sufficient for applications such as fMCG. In this thesis, we present the design and characterization of a portable four-channel SERF atomic magnetometer array with a 5-10 fT Hz-1/2 single channel baseline sensitivity. The magnetometer array has several design features intended to maximize its suitability for biomagnetic measurement, specifically fMCG, such as a compact modular design and large, flexible channel spacing from 5-15 cm. The modular design allows for easily adding units to the array and the independent positioning and orientation of each magnetometer, in principle allowing for non-planar array geometries. Using this array in a magnetically shielded room, we acquire adult magnetocadiograms and, for the first time with a SERF magnetometer, fMCG. We also investigate the use of different operational modes of the magnetometer to extend its functionality, specifically modulation methods for additional directional

  1. Investigating the interaction between hematopoietic stem cells and their niche during embryonic development: optimizing the isolation of fetal and newborn stem cells from liver, spleen, and bone marrow.

    PubMed

    Cao, Huimin; Williams, Brenda; Nilsson, Susan K

    2014-01-01

    Hematopoietic stem cells (HSCs) are maintained in a particular microenvironment termed a "niche." Within the niche, a number of critical molecules and supportive cell types have been identified to play key roles in modulating adult HSC quiescence, proliferation, differentiation, and reconstitution. However, unlike in the adult bone marrow (BM), the components of stem cell niches, as well as their interactions with fetal HSC during different stages of embryonic development, are poorly understood. During embryogenesis, hematopoietic development migrates through multiple organs, each with different cellular and molecular components and hence each with a potentially unique HSC niche. As a consequence, isolating fetal HSC from each organ at the time of hematopoietic colonization is fundamental for assessing and understanding both HSC function and their interactions with specific microenvironments. Herein, we describe methodologies for harvesting cells as well as the purification of stem and progenitors from fetal and newborn liver, spleen, and BM at various developmental stages following the expansion of hematopoiesis in the fetal liver at E14.5.

  2. Inhibition of brain prostaglandin endoperoxide synthase-2 prevents the preparturient increase in fetal adrenocorticotropin secretion in the sheep fetus.

    PubMed

    Gersting, Jason; Schaub, Christine E; Keller-Wood, Maureen; Wood, Charles E

    2008-08-01

    Maturation of the fetal hypothalamus-pituitary-adrenal axis is critical for the timely somatic development of the fetus and readiness for birth. Recently, we proposed that prostaglandin generation within the fetal central nervous system is critical for the modulation of hypotension-induced fetal ACTH secretion. The present study was designed to test the hypothesis that the preparturient increase in fetal ACTH secretion is dependent upon fetal central nervous system prostaglandin synthesis mediated by the activity of prostaglandin endoperoxide synthase (PGHS)-2 (cyclooxygenase-2) in the fetal brain. We performed two studies in chronically catheterized fetal sheep. In the first study, we infused nimesulide or vehicle intracerebroventricularly (i.c.v) into singleton fetal sheep and collected blood samples until spontaneous parturition. Nimesulide significantly delayed parturition, and inhibited fetal ACTH and proopiomelanocortin secretion but did not prevent the preparturient increase in fetal plasma cortisol concentration. In the second study, we used twin fetuses. One fetus received intracerebroventricular nimesulide and the other intracerebroventricular vehicle. Nimesulide reduced brain tissue concentrations of prostaglandin estradiol, while not affecting plasma prostaglandin E(2) concentrations, demonstrating an action restricted to the fetal brain. Nimesulide reduced PGHS-2 mRNA and increased PGHS-2 protein, while not altering PGHS-1 mRNA or protein in most brain regions, suggesting an effect of the inhibitor on PGHS-2 turnover and relative specificity for PGHS-2 in vivo. We conclude that the preparturient increase in fetal ACTH and proopiomelanocortin is dependent upon the activity of PGHS-2 in the fetal brain. However, we also conclude that the timing of parturition is not solely dependent upon ACTH in this species.

  3. Development and characterization of K562 cell clones expressing BCL11A-XL: Decreased hemoglobin production with fetal hemoglobin inducers and its rescue with mithramycin

    PubMed Central

    Finotti, Alessia; Gasparello, Jessica; Breveglieri, Giulia; Cosenza, Lucia Carmela; Montagner, Giulia; Bresciani, Alberto; Altamura, Sergio; Bianchi, Nicoletta; Martini, Elisa; Gallerani, Eleonora; Borgatti, Monica; Gambari, Roberto

    2015-01-01

    Induction of fetal hemoglobin (HbF) is considered a promising strategy in the treatment of β-thalassemia, in which production of adult hemoglobin (HbA) is impaired by mutations affecting the β-globin gene. Recent results indicate that B-cell lymphoma/leukemia 11A (BCL11A) is a major repressor of γ-globin gene expression. Therefore, disrupting the binding of the BCL11A transcriptional repressor complex to the γ-globin gene promoter provides a novel approach for inducing expression of the γ-globin genes. To develop a cellular screening system for the identification of BCL11A inhibitors, we produced K562 cell clones with integrated copies of a BCL11A-XL expressing vector. We characterized 12 K562 clones expressing different levels of BCL11A-XL and found that a clear inverse relationship does exist between the levels of BCL11A-XL and the extent of hemoglobinization induced by a panel of HbF inducers. Using mithramycin as an inducer, we found that this molecule was the only HbF inducer efficient in rescuing the ability to differentiate along the erythroid program, even in K562 cell clones expressing high levels of BCL11A-XL, suggesting that BCL11A-XL activity is counteracted by mithramycin. PMID:26342260

  4. Fetal cardiac time intervals estimated on fetal magnetocardiograms: single cycle analysis versus average beat inspection.

    PubMed

    Comani, Silvia; Alleva, Giovanna

    2007-01-01

    Fetal cardiac time intervals (fCTI) are dependent on fetal growth and development, and may reveal useful information for fetuses affected by growth retardation, structural cardiac defects or long QT syndrome. Fetal cardiac signals with a signal-to-noise ratio (SNR) of at least 15 dB were retrieved from fetal magnetocardiography (fMCG) datasets with a system based on independent component analysis (ICA). An automatic method was used to detect the onset and offset of the cardiac waves on single cardiac cycles of each signal, and the fCTI were quantified for each heartbeat; long rhythm strips were used to calculate average fCTI and their variability for single fetal cardiac signals. The aim of this work was to compare the outcomes of this system with the estimates of fCTI obtained with a classical method based on the visual inspection of averaged beats. No fCTI variability can be measured from averaged beats. A total of 25 fMCG datasets (fetal age from 22 to 37 weeks) were evaluated, and 1768 cardiac cycles were used to compute fCTI. The real differences between the values obtained with a single cycle analysis and visual inspection of averaged beats were very small for all fCTI. They were comparable with signal resolution (+/-1 ms) for QRS complex and QT interval, and always <5 ms for the PR interval, ST segment and T wave. The coefficients of determination between the fCTI estimated with the two methods ranged between 0.743 and 0.917. Conversely, inter-observer differences were larger, and the related coefficients of determination ranged between 0.463 and 0.807, assessing the high performance of the automated single cycle analysis, which is also rapid and unaffected by observer-dependent bias.

  5. Modulation of GABAergic and glutamatergic transmission by ethanol in the developing neocortex: an in vitro test of the excessive inhibition hypothesis of Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder

    PubMed Central

    Sanderson, Jennifer L.; Partridge, L. Donald; Valenzuela, C. Fernando

    2010-01-01

    Summary Exposure to ethanol during development triggers neuronal cell death and this is thought to play a central role in the pathophysiology of fetal alcohol spectrum disorder (FASD). Studies suggest that ethanol-induced neurodegeneration during the period of synaptogenesis results from widespread potentiation of GABAA receptors and inhibition of NMDA receptors throughout the brain, with neocortical layer II being particularly sensitive. Here, we tested whether ethanol modulates the function of these receptors during this developmental period using patch-clamp electrophysiological and Ca2+ imaging techniques in acute slices from postnatal day 7–9 rats. We focused on pyramidal neurons in layer II of the parietal cortex (with layer III as a control). Ethanol (70 mM) increased spontaneous action potential-dependent GABA release in layer II (but not layer III) neurons without affecting postsynaptic GABAA receptors. Protein and mRNA expression for both the Cl− importer, NKCC1, and the Cl− exporter KCC2, were detected in layer II/III neurons. Perforated-patch experiments demonstrated that ECl− is shifted to the right of Em; activation of GABAA receptors with muscimol depolarized Em, decreased action potential firing, and minimally increased [Ca2+]i. However, the ethanol-induced increase of GABAergic transmission did not affect neuronal excitability. Ethanol had no effect on currents exogenously evoked by NMDA or AMPA receptor-mediated spontaneous excitatory postsynaptic currents. Acute application of ethanol in the absence of receptor antagonists minimally increased [Ca2+]i. These findings are inconsistent with the excessive inhibition model of ethanol-induced neurodegeneration, supporting the view that ethanol damages developing neurons via more complex mechanisms that vary among specific neuronal populations. PMID:19027758

  6. Fetal Alcohol Syndrome

    MedlinePlus

    ... Conditions Frequently Asked Questions Español Condiciones Chinese Conditions Fetal Alcohol Syndrome Read in Chinese What is Fetal Alcohol Syndrome (FAS)? Fetal Alcohol Syndrome (FAS) describes changes in ...

  7. The Future of Fetal Monitoring

    PubMed Central

    J, Adam

    2012-01-01

    Fetal heart rate monitoring is the most common obstetric procedure, and yet it remains a frustrating technology, plagued by false-positive results and miscommunication between providers. A new generation of invasive and noninvasive monitoring technologies is under development and entering the clinic, including the STAN monitor (Neoventa Medical, Mölndal, Sweden), which improves monitoring accuracy by incorporating a proxy of the fetal ST-segment. New noninvasive fetal electrocardiography and uterine contraction monitoring technologies will bring novel metrics and potentially improved safety to obstetrics in coming years. PMID:23483429

  8. Affect development as a need to preserve homeostasis.

    PubMed

    Dönmez, Aslıhan; Ceylan, Mehmet Emin; Ünsalver, Barış Önen

    2016-03-01

    In this review, we aim to present our hypothesis about the neural development of affect. According to this view, affect develops at a multi-layered process, and as a mediator between drives, emotion and cognition. This development is parallel to the evolution of the brain from reptiles to mammals. There are five steps in this process: (1) Because of the various environmental challenges, changes in the autonomic nervous system occur and homeostasis becomes destabilized; (2) Drives arise from the destabilized homeostasis; (3) Drives trigger the neural basis of the basic emotional systems; (4) These basic emotions evolve into affect to find the particular object to invest the emotional energy; and (5) In the final stage, cognition is added to increase the possibility of identifying a particular object. In this paper, we will summarize the rationale behind this view, which is based on neuroscientific proofs, such as evolution of autonomic nervous system, neural basis the raw affective states, the interaction between affect and cognition, related brain areas, related neurotransmitters, as well as some clinical examples.

  9. Timed Maternal Melatonin Treatment Reverses Circadian Disruption of the Fetal Adrenal Clock Imposed by Exposure to Constant Light

    PubMed Central

    Mendez, Natalia; Abarzua-Catalan, Lorena; Vilches, Nelson; Galdames, Hugo A.; Spichiger, Carlos; Richter, Hans G.; Valenzuela, Guillermo J.; Seron-Ferre, Maria; Torres-Farfan, Claudia

    2012-01-01

    Surprisingly, in our modern 24/7 society, there is scant information on the impact of developmental chronodisruption like the one experienced by shift worker pregnant women on fetal and postnatal physiology. There are important differences between the maternal and fetal circadian systems; for instance, the suprachiasmatic nucleus is the master clock in the mother but not in the fetus. Despite this, several tissues/organs display circadian oscillations in the fetus. Our hypothesis is that the maternal plasma melatonin rhythm drives the fetal circadian system, which in turn relies this information to other fetal tissues through corticosterone rhythmic signaling. The present data show that suppression of the maternal plasma melatonin circadian rhythm, secondary to exposure of pregnant rats to constant light along the second half of gestation, had several effects on fetal development. First, it induced intrauterine growth retardation. Second, in the fetal adrenal in vivo it markedly affected the mRNA expression level of clock genes and clock-controlled genes as well as it lowered the content and precluded the rhythm of corticosterone. Third, an altered in vitro fetal adrenal response to ACTH of both, corticosterone production and relative expression of clock genes and steroidogenic genes was observed. All these changes were reversed when the mother received a daily dose of melatonin during the subjective night; supporting a role of melatonin on overall fetal development and pointing to it as a ‘time giver’ for the fetal adrenal gland. Thus, the present results collectively support that the maternal circadian rhythm of melatonin is a key signal for the generation and/or synchronization of the circadian rhythms in the fetal adrenal gland. In turn, low levels and lack of a circadian rhythm of fetal corticosterone may be responsible of fetal growth restriction; potentially inducing long term effects in the offspring, possibility that warrants further research. PMID

  10. Fetal nutrition

    PubMed Central

    Rosa, Franz W.; Turshen, Meredeth

    1970-01-01

    The extensive literature on nutrition in pregnancy is reviewed with special reference to international experience, including observations on nutritional trials in pregnancy, pregnancy during famines caused by war, and studies of birth-weight in relation to pregnancy interval, parity and multiple pregnancies. Recent research on the significance of fetal nutrition suggests that ”small-for-dates” infants, i.e., those that are developmentally retarded in utero, suffer long-term developmental sequelae. A high world-wide incidence of small-for-dates births was reported by the World Health Organization in 1960. Although a definite correlation has been found between socio-economic status and birth-weight, it is not known to what extent the smaller birth-weights observed in the lower socio-economic groups can be improved by specific nutritional measures. In addition to the general advice given on maternal nutrition and family-planning, further studies are needed to determine the precise means of achieving improvement in fetal nutrition and a better outcome of pregnancy. PMID:5314013

  11. Fetal nutrition.

    PubMed

    Rosa, F W; Turshen, M

    1970-01-01

    The extensive literature on nutrition in pregnancy is reviewed with special reference to international experience, including observations on nutritional trials in pregnancy, pregnancy during famines caused by war, and studies of birth-weight in relation to pregnancy interval, parity and multiple pregnancies. Recent research on the significance of fetal nutrition suggests that "small-for-dates" infants, i.e., those that are developmentally retarded in utero, suffer long-term developmental sequelae. A high world-wide incidence of small-for-dates births was reported by the World Health Organization in 1960.Although a definite correlation has been found between socio-economic status and birth-weight, it is not known to what extent the smaller birth-weights observed in the lower socio-economic groups can be improved by specific nutritional measures. In addition to the general advice given on maternal nutrition and family-planning, further studies are needed to determine the precise means of achieving improvement in fetal nutrition and a better outcome of pregnancy.

  12. Antenatal management of recurrent fetal goitrous hyperthyroidism associated with fetal cardiac failure in a pregnant woman with persistent high levels of thyroid-stimulating hormone receptor antibody after ablative therapy.

    PubMed

    Matsumoto, Tadashi; Miyakoshi, Kei; Saisho, Yoshifumi; Ishii, Tomohiro; Ikenoue, Satoru; Kasuga, Yoshifumi; Kadohira, Ikuko; Sato, Seiji; Momotani, Naoko; Minegishi, Kazuhiro; Yoshimura, Yasunori

    2013-01-01

    High titer of maternal thyroid-stimulating hormone receptor antibody (TRAb) in patients with Graves' disease could cause fetal hyperthyroidism during pregnancy. Clinical features of fetal hyperthyroidism include tachycardia, goiter, growth restriction, advanced bone maturation, cardiomegaly, and fetal death. The recognition and treatment of fetal hyperthyroidism are believed to be important to optimize growth and intellectual development in affected fetuses. We herein report a case of fetal treatment in two successive siblings showing in utero hyperthyroid status in a woman with a history of ablative treatment for Graves' disease. The fetuses were considered in hyperthyroid status based on high levels of maternal TRAb, a goiter, and persistent tachycardia. In particular, cardiac failure was observed in the second fetus. With intrauterine treatment using potassium iodine and propylthiouracil, fetal cardiac function improved. A high level of TRAb was detected in the both neonates. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first report on the changes of fetal cardiac function in response to fetal treatment in two siblings showing in utero hyperthyroid status. This case report illustrates the impact of prenatal medication via the maternal circulation for fetal hyperthyroidism and cardiac failure.

  13. Experiment K-314: Fetal and neonatal rat bone and joint development following in Utero spaceflight

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Sabelman, E. E.; Holton, E. M.; Arnaud, C. D.

    1981-01-01

    Infant rat limb specimens from Soviet and U.S. ground-based studies were examined by radiography, macrophotography, histologic sectioning and staining and scanning electron microscopy. A comparison was conducted between vivarium and flight-type diets suggesting that nutritional obesity may adversely affect pregnancy. Data were obtained on maturation of ossification centers, orientation of collagen fibers in bone, tendon and ligaments, joint surface texture and spatial relationships of bones of the hind limb. Computer reconstructions of the knee and hip show promise as a means of investigating the etiology of congenital hip dislocation.

  14. Developing Worksheet Based on Science Process Skills: Factors Affecting Solubility

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Karsli, Fethiye; Sahin, Cigdem

    2009-01-01

    The purpose of this study is to develop a worksheet about the factors affecting solubility, which could be useful for the prospective science teachers (PST) to remind and regain their science process skills (SPS). The pilot study of the WS was carried out with 32 first grade PST during the 2007-2008 academic year in the education department at…

  15. Morphological abnormalities, impaired fetal development and decrease in myostatin expression following somatic cell nuclear transfer in dogs.

    PubMed

    Hong, Il-Hwa; Jeong, Yeon-Woo; Shin, Taeyoung; Hyun, Sang-Hwan; Park, Jin-Kyu; Ki, Mi-Ran; Han, Seon-Young; Park, Se-Il; Lee, Ji-Hyun; Lee, Eun-Mi; Kim, Ah-Young; You, Sang-Young; Hwang, Woo-Suk; Jeong, Kyu-Shik

    2011-05-01

    Several mammals, including dogs, have been successfully cloned using somatic cell nuclear transfer (SCNT), but the efficiency of generating normal, live offspring is relatively low. Although the high failure rate has been attributed to incomplete reprogramming of the somatic nuclei during the cloning process, the exact cause is not fully known. To elucidate the cause of death in cloned offspring, 12 deceased offspring cloned by SCNT were necropsied. The clones were either stillborn just prior to delivery or died with dyspnea shortly after birth. On gross examination, defects in the anterior abdominal wall and increased heart and liver sizes were found. Notably, a significant increase in muscle mass and macroglossia lesions were observed in deceased SCNT-cloned dogs. Interestingly, the expression of myostatin, a negative regulator of muscle growth during embryogenesis, was down-regulated at the mRNA level in tongues and skeletal muscles of SCNT-cloned dogs compared with a normal dog. Results of the present study suggest that decreased expression of myostatin in SCNT-cloned dogs may be involved in morphological abnormalities such as increased muscle mass and macroglossia, which may contribute to impaired fetal development and poor survival rates.

  16. TGFβ2 regulates hypothalamic Trh expression through the TGFβ inducible early gene-1 (TIEG1) during fetal development

    PubMed Central

    Martínez-Armenta, Miriam; de León-Guerrero, Sol Díaz; Catalán, Ana; Alvarez-Arellano, Lourdes; Uribe, Rosa Maria; Subramaniam, Malayannan; Charli, Jean-Louis; Pérez-Martínez, Leonor

    2015-01-01

    The hypothalamus regulates the homeostasis of the organism by controlling hormone secretion from the pituitary. The molecular mechanisms that regulate the differentiation of the hypothalamic thyrotropin-releasing hormone (TRH) phenotype are poorly understood. We have previously shown that Klf10 or TGFβ inducible early gene-1 (TIEG1) is enriched in fetal hypothalamic TRH neurons. Here, we show that expression of TGFβ isoforms (1–3) and both TGFβ receptors (TβRI and II) occurs in the hypothalamus concomitantly with the establishment of TRH neurons during late embryonic development. TGFβ2 induces Trh expression via a TIEG1 dependent mechanism. TIEG1 regulates Trh expression through an evolutionary conserved GC rich sequence on the Trh promoter. Finally, in mice deficient in TIEG1, Trh expression is lower than in wild type animals at embryonic day 17. These results indicate that TGFβ signaling, through the upregulation of TIEG1, plays an important role in the establishment of Trh expression in the embryonic hypothalamus. PMID:25448845

  17. TGFβ2 regulates hypothalamic Trh expression through the TGFβ inducible early gene-1 (TIEG1) during fetal development.

    PubMed

    Martínez-Armenta, Miriam; Díaz de León-Guerrero, Sol; Catalán, Ana; Alvarez-Arellano, Lourdes; Uribe, Rosa Maria; Subramaniam, Malayannan; Charli, Jean-Louis; Pérez-Martínez, Leonor

    2015-01-15

    The hypothalamus regulates the homeostasis of the organism by controlling hormone secretion from the pituitary. The molecular mechanisms that regulate the differentiation of the hypothalamic thyrotropin-releasing hormone (TRH) phenotype are poorly understood. We have previously shown that Klf10 or TGFβ inducible early gene-1 (TIEG1) is enriched in fetal hypothalamic TRH neurons. Here, we show that expression of TGFβ isoforms (1-3) and both TGFβ receptors (TβRI and II) occurs in the hypothalamus concomitantly with the establishment of TRH neurons during late embryonic development. TGFβ2 induces Trh expression via a TIEG1 dependent mechanism. TIEG1 regulates Trh expression through an evolutionary conserved GC rich sequence on the Trh promoter. Finally, in mice deficient in TIEG1, Trh expression is lower than in wild type animals at embryonic day 17. These results indicate that TGFβ signaling, through the upregulation of TIEG1, plays an important role in the establishment of Trh expression in the embryonic hypothalamus.

  18. Segmented independent component analysis for improved separation of fetal cardiac signals from nonstationary fetal magnetocardiograms

    PubMed Central

    Murta, Luiz O.; Guzo, Mauro G.; Moraes, Eder R.; Baffa, Oswaldo; Wakai, Ronald T.; Comani, Silvia

    2015-01-01

    Fetal magnetocardiograms (fMCGs) have been successfully processed with independent component analysis (ICA) to separate the fetal cardiac signals, but ICA effectiveness can be limited by signal nonstation-arities due to fetal movements. We propose an ICA-based method to improve the quality of fetal signals separated from fMCG affected by fetal movements. This technique (SegICA) includes a procedure to detect signal nonstationarities, according to which the fMCG recordings are divided in stationary segments that are then processed with ICA. The first and second statistical moments and the signal polarity reversal were used at different threshold levels to detect signal transients. SegICA effectiveness was assessed in two fMCG datasets (with and without fetal movements) by comparing the signal-to-noise ratio (SNR) of the signals extracted with ICA and with SegICA. Results showed that the SNR of fetal signals affected by fetal movements improved with SegICA, whereas the SNR gain was negligible elsewhere. The best measure to detect signal nonstationarities of physiological origin was signal polarity reversal at threshold level 0.9. The first statistical moment also provided good results at threshold level 0.6. SegICA seems a promising method to separate fetal cardiac signals of improved quality from nonstationary fMCG recordings affected by fetal movements. PMID:25781658

  19. Fetal brain disruption sequence versus fetal brain arrest: A distinct autosomal recessive developmental brain malformation phenotype.

    PubMed

    Abdel-Salam, Ghada M H; Abdel-Hamid, Mohamed S; El-Khayat, Hamed A; Eid, Ola M; Saba, Soliman; Farag, Mona K; Saleem, Sahar N; Gaber, Khaled R

    2015-05-01

    The term fetal brain disruption sequence (FBDS) was coined to describe a number of sporadic conditions caused by numerous external disruptive events presenting with variable imaging findings. However, rare familial occurrences have been reported. We describe five patients (two sib pairs and one sporadic) with congenital severe microcephaly, seizures, and profound intellectual disability. Brain magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) revealed unique and uniform picture of underdeveloped cerebral hemispheres with increased extraxial CSF, abnormal gyral pattern (polymicrogyria-like lesions in two sibs and lissencephaly in the others), loss of white matter, dysplastic ventricles, hypogenesis of corpus callosum, and hypoplasia of the brainstem, but hypoplastic cerebellum in one. Fetal magnetic resonance imaging (FMRI) of two patients showed the same developmental brain malformations in utero. These imaging findings are in accordance with arrested brain development rather than disruption. Molecular analysis excluded mutations in potentially related genes such as NDE1, MKL2, OCLN, and JAM3. These unique clinical and imaging findings were described before among familial reports with FBDS. However, our patients represent a recognizable phenotype of developmental brain malformations, that is, apparently distinguishable from either familial microhydranencephaly or microlissencephaly that were collectively termed FBDS. Thus, the use of the umbrella term FBDS is no longer helpful. Accordingly, we propose the term fetal brain arrest to distinguish them from other familial patients diagnosed as FBDS. The presence of five affected patients from three unrelated consanguineous families suggests an autosomal-recessive mode of inheritance. The spectrum of fetal brain disruption sequence is reviewed.

  20. Regional development of the human epidermis in the first trimester embryo and the second trimester fetus (ages related to the timing of amniocentesis and fetal biopsy).

    PubMed

    Holbrook, K A; Odland, G F

    1980-03-01

    The epidermis was sampled from multiple body sites of whole human embryos and fetuses of 45- and 65-days, 16- and 21-weeks estimated gestation age to determine whether a regionally dependent, variable rate of interfollicular epidermal development exists. Surface characteristics and thickness of the epidermis were evaluated by scanning electron and light microscopy, respectively. It was concluded that all epidermal development proceeded simultaneously during the first trimester with the exception of the foot which was more advanced in both thickness and state of differentiation. During the second trimester the epidermis of both the head and the foot showed more precocious development, particularly in relation to the special sense organs and to the plantar surface. The interfollicular epidermis of the majority of the body, however, was approximately equivalent in the state of development. These data have potential relevance to prenatal diagnosis of inherited skin disease from amniocentesis and/or fetal biopsy specimens; the present survey of the total epidermal surface will allow one to predict the types of skin-derived cells that should be present in the amniotic fluid at a given age, and to evaluate a fetal biopsy from one region and be confident that it is an accurate index of fetal skin development, age and status in general.

  1. Development of cognitive and affective control networks and decision making.

    PubMed

    Kar, Bhoomika R; Vijay, Nivita; Mishra, Shreyasi

    2013-01-01

    Cognitive control and decision making are two important research areas in the realm of higher-order cognition. Control processes such as interference control and monitoring in cognitive and affective contexts have been found to influence the process of decision making. Development of control processes follows a gradual growth pattern associated with the prolonged maturation of underlying neural circuits including the lateral prefrontal cortex, anterior cingulate, and the medial prefrontal cortex. These circuits are also involved in the control of processes that influences decision making, particularly with respect to choice behavior. Developmental studies on affective control have shown distinct patterns of brain activity with adolescents showing greater activation of amygdala whereas adults showing greater activity in ventral prefrontal cortex. Conflict detection, monitoring, and adaptation involve anticipation and subsequent performance adjustments which are also critical to complex decision making. We discuss the gradual developmental patterns observed in two of our studies on conflict monitoring and adaptation in affective and nonaffective contexts. Findings of these studies indicate the need to look at the differences in the effects of the development of cognitive and affective control on decision making in children and particularly adolescents. Neuroimaging studies have shown the involvement of separable neural networks for cognitive (medial prefrontal cortex and anterior cingulate) and affective control (amygdala, ventral medial prefrontal cortex) shows that one system can affect the other also at the neural level. Hence, an understanding of the interaction and balance between the cognitive and affective brain networks may be crucial for self-regulation and decision making during the developmental period, particularly late childhood and adolescence. The chapter highlights the need for empirical investigation on the interaction between the different aspects

  2. Effects of benzene on erythropoiesis in the fetal mouse

    SciTech Connect

    Mizens, M.

    1981-01-01

    Benzene toxicity in humans and adult animals appears as a functional disturbance of hematopoiesis. The work presented here examined the effects of benzene on the fetal mouse and its blood forming organ, the liver. The study includes the effects on macromolecular synthesis in the fetal liver erythropoietic cells and the general effects of benzene on the development of the fetus. Although biochemical changes were noted in the liver of the fetus when the female was exposed to benzene, no histopathologic changes were found. The effects on DNA and heme synthesis in the fetal liver cell population suggest disturbances in the proliferation and maturation phases of the developing red blood cell. The biochemical perturbations observed in the erythropoietic activity of the fetal mouse liver appeared to have no long term effects on the fetus. It is suggested that the temporary effect on the fetus may be the result of inteplay between an increase in the females' rate of metabolism of benzene and the ability of the fetal liver to recover rapidly from disturbances in the erythropoietic cell cycle. Only when the dosing period was extended from day 11 of gestation to term, and the maternal health appeared to be deteriorating, was the viability of the litter affected.

  3. Fetal alcohol exposure: consequences, diagnosis, and treatment.

    PubMed

    Pruett, Dawn; Waterman, Emily Hubbard; Caughey, Aaron B

    2013-01-01

    Maternal alcohol use during pregnancy is prevalent, with as many as 12% of pregnant women consuming alcohol. Alcohol intake may vary from an occasional drink, to weekly binge drinking, to chronic alcohol use throughout pregnancy. Whereas there are certain known consequences from fetal alcohol exposure, such as fetal alcohol syndrome, other effects are less well defined. Craniofacial dysmorphologies, abnormalities of organ systems, behavioral and intellectual deficits, and fetal death have all been attributed to maternal alcohol consumption. This review article considers the theoretical mechanisms of how alcohol affects the fetus, including the variable susceptibility to fetal alcohol exposure and the implications of ethanol dose and timing of exposure. Criteria for diagnosis of fetal alcohol syndrome are discussed, as well as new methods for early detection of maternal alcohol use and fetal alcohol exposure, such as the use of fatty acid ethyl esters. Finally, current and novel treatment strategies, both in utero and post utero, are reviewed.

  4. [Mentalisation and affect regulation--how the infantile self develops].

    PubMed

    Kalisch, Konrad

    2012-01-01

    The text comprises the different elements of the psychoanalytic mentalization theory of Peter Fonagy et al. and tries to explain them. Part of this theory are above all the affect mirroring as well as the affect reciprocity theory and the two modes of the "as if" character and the psychic equivalence (playing with reality). You can find clear examples for each of these theoretical components. Moreover there are many correlations to other authors and their respective development theories: that is to Wilfred Bion, Donald Winnicott and John Bowlby. The text is based above all on Martin Dornes' approaches on this topic (2004, 2006).

  5. Widespread neuronal degeneration in rats following oral administration of methylmercury during the postnatal developing phase: a model of fetal-type minamata disease.

    PubMed

    Sakamoto, M; Wakabayashi, K; Kakita, A; Hitoshi Takahashi; Adachi, T; Nakano, A

    1998-02-16

    The neurotoxicity of methylmercury (MeHg) treatment during the postnatal developing phase in rats was studied. Rats on postnatal day 1 were orally administered 5 mg/kg/day methylmercury chloride (MMC) for more than 30 consecutive days. Body weight loss began 26 days after MMC was administered, and severe paralysis of the hind-limbs and unsteadiness appeared subsequently. Histopathologically, the widespread neuronal degeneration was observed in the cerebral neocortex, neostriatum, red nucleus, brainstem, cerebellum and spinal dorsal root ganglia on day 32. The widespread distribution of the lesions was quite similar to that in fetal cases of MeHg intoxication in Minamata, Japan. These findings suggest that MMC treatment during the postnatal development phase in rats produce a good model of fetal-type Minamata disease.

  6. Heating of fetal bone by diagnostic ultrasound

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Doody, Claire

    Most pregnant women in the Western world undergo an ultrasound examination and so it is important to ensure that exposure of the embryo or fetus does not produce unwanted effects. It is known that ultrasound can heat tissue, especially bone, and so this thesis explores the degree to which fetal bone might be heated during a pulsed Doppler examination. This is done both by carrying out measurements and by developing computer models. Thermal measurements on human fetal thoracic vertebrae of gestational age ranging from 14 to 39 weeks are reported. The bone samples were insonated in vitro with an ultrasound beam which had power and intensity values typical of those from a clinical scanner operating in pulsed Doppler mode. Temperature rises ranging from 0.6°C to 1.8°C were observed after five minutes, with approximately 75% of the temperature rise occurring in the first minute. Two approaches to computer modelling are described. These are the heated disc technique, which is commonly used to model the temperature rise generated by an ultrasound beam, and finite element modelling, a more general approach used to obtain solutions to differential equations. The degree to which our limited knowledge of the properties of fetal tissue affect our ability to make accurate predictions of in vivo heating is explored. It is shown that the present uncertainty in the value of the thermal conductivity and attenuation coefficient of fetal bone can lead to significant uncertainty in predictions of heating. The degree to which the simplifications inherent in the heated disc model affect the results will also be discussed. The results from the models are compared with the experimental measurements in order to estimate the attenuation coefficient of the bone.

  7. Regulation of Baboon Fetal Ovarian Development by Placental Estrogen: Onset of Puberty Is Delayed in Offspring Deprived of Estrogen In Utero1

    PubMed Central

    Pepe, Gerald J.; Lynch, Terrie J.; Albrecht, Eugene D.

    2013-01-01

    ABSTRACT Using the baboon as a model for studies of human reproductive biology, we previously showed that placental estrogen regulates fetal ovarian follicle development. In this study, offspring of baboons untreated or treated in utero with the aromatase inhibitor letrozole (estradiol reduced >95%) or letrozole and estradiol were reared to adulthood to determine whether estrogen programming of the fetal ovary impacted puberty and reproduction in adulthood. All offspring exhibited normal growth and blood pressure/chemistries. Puberty onset in untreated baboons (43.2 ± 1.4 mo) was delayed (P < 0.01) in animals of letrozole-treated mothers (49.0 ± 1.2 mo) and normal in offspring of mothers treated with letrozole and estradiol (42.7 ± 0.8 mo). During the first 2 yr postmenarche, menstrual cycles in estrogen-suppressed animals (43.2 ± 1.3 days) were longer (P < 0.05) than in untreated baboons (38.3 ± 0.5 days) or those treated with letrozole and estrogen (39.6 ± 0.8 days). Moreover, in estrogen-suppressed offspring, serum levels of estradiol were lower and follicle-stimulating hormone greater (P < 0.05) in the follicular and luteal phases, and the elevation in luteal-phase progesterone extended (P < 0.02). Thus, puberty onset was delayed and menstrual cycles prolonged and associated with altered serum hormone levels in baboon offspring that developed in an intrauterine environment in which estradiol levels were suppressed. Because puberty and follicle development, as shown previously, were normal in baboons treated in utero with letrozole and estradiol, we propose that fetal ovarian development and timely onset of puberty in the primate is programmed by fetal exposure to placental estrogen. PMID:24132960

  8. Evidence for regulatory genes on mouse chromosome 7 that affect the quantitative expression of proteins in the fetal and newborn liver.

    PubMed Central

    Giometti, C S; Gemmell, M A; Taylor, J; Tollaksen, S L; Angeletti, R; Gluecksohn-Waelsch, S

    1992-01-01

    A series of deletions around the albino locus on mouse chromosome 7 is believed to include one or more regulatory genes that control the activities of a cluster of liver enzymes. To further characterize the functions of this region of the mouse genome, we have used quantitative two-dimensional electrophoresis to analyze the effects of two of these deletions, c3H and c14CoS, on the expression of liver proteins. More than 400 distinct protein gene products were quantitated in livers from fetal and newborn wild-type homozygous (cch/cch), heterozygous (cch/c3H or cch/c14CoS), and deletion homozygous (c3H/c3H or c14CoS/c14CoS) mice. Livers of fetal and newborn c3H heterozygotes and homozygous wild-type littermates produced qualitatively identical protein patterns after two-dimensional electrophoresis. In livers of c3H homozygous fetuses, however, abnormal amounts (either increased or decreased relative to homozygous wild-type and heterozygous littermates) of 29 proteins were found. Twenty-eight of these 29 protein anomalies were also found in livers of newborn c3H homozygotes. Livers of fetal and newborn mice homozygous for the c14CoS deletion, which overlaps the c3H deletion and produces a similar phenotype, expressed normal amounts of these proteins. One of the 29 proteins (MSN807) has an amino-terminal sequence similar to a 23-kDa translationally controlled protein abundant in mouse erythroleukemia and sarcoma-180 cells. These results suggest that normal chromosome 7 contains genes, located within the region of the c3H but not the c14CoS deletion, that regulate the abundance of specific proteins in the liver. These proteins cannot be related to the phenotypic alterations shared by the c3H and c14CoS deletions. Images PMID:1549608

  9. Role of fetal DNA in preeclampsia (review).

    PubMed

    Konečná, Barbora; Vlková, Barbora; Celec, Peter

    2015-02-01

    Preeclampsia is an autoimmune disorder characterized by hypertension. It begins with abnormal cytotrophoblast apoptosis, which leads to inflammation and an increase in the levels of anti-angiogenic factors followed by the disruption of the angiogenic status. Increased levels of fetal DNA and RNA coming from the placenta, one of the most commonly affected organs in pregnancies complicated by preeclampsia, have been found in pregnant women with the condition. However, it remains unknown as to whether this is a cause or a consequence of preeclampsia. Few studies have been carried out on preeclampsia in which an animal model of preeclampsia was induced by an injection of different types of DNA that are mimic fetal DNA and provoke inflammation through Toll-like receptor 9 (TLR9) or cyclic guanosine monophosphate-adenosine monophosphate (cGAMP). The specific mechanisms involved in the development of preeclampsia are not yet fully understood. It is hypothesized that the presence of different fragments of fetal DNA in maternal plasma may cause for the development of preeclampsia. The function of DNase during preeclampsia also remains unresolved. Studies have suggested that its activity is decreased or the DNA is protected against its effects. Further research is required to uncover the pathogenesis of preeclampsia and focus more on the condition of patients with the condition.

  10. [Fetal pain - neurobiological causes and consequences].

    PubMed

    Gonçalves, Nuno; Rebelo, Sandra; Tavares, Isaura

    2010-01-01

    The existence of putatively painful situations to the fetus demands a careful evaluation of the issue of fetal pain. Several indirect approaches are used to evaluate the existence of fetal pain. Neurobiological studies showed that from the 30th week on, the anatomical and physiological system for pain transmission is already developed, with the connections from the periphery to the cortex being successively established. Stress responses to a painful stimulation are complex but they can be detected from the 16th week on. There is activation of the hypothalamus-pituitary-adrenal axis, autonomic nervous system and hemodynamic changes in response to nociceptive stimulation. In prematures exposed to pain there are significant increases of adrenaline, noradrenaline and cortisol, hemodynamic changes, motor reflexes and facial reactions. The changes induced by strong nociceptive stimulation of newborns have important postnatal consequences since they affect future reactions to noxious stimuli. Central sensitization and immaturity of the pain inhibitory system are the main neurobiological explanations for the increased pain. Detailed studies of the neurobiological mechanisms of the transmission of painful stimuli along with follow-up studies of the consequences of exposure to pain during the development of the fetus are necessary to fully understand fetal pain.

  11. Would gestational age and presence of brain anomalies affect interobserver reliability of fetal head biometry? Using off-line analysis of 3-D dataset.

    PubMed

    Salman, Mona S M; Mousa, Hatem A; Twining, Peter; Jones, Nia W; James, David; Momtaz, Mohamed; Aboulghar, Mona; El-Sheikhah, Ahmad; Bugg, George

    2012-01-01

    The objective was to assess interobserver reliability of fetal head biometry using archived three-dimensional (3-D) volumes and the impact of gestational age and presence of brain anomalies on examiners' performance. Seventy nine 3-D volume datasets of fetal head were examined: 27 were normal and 52 had brain abnormalities. Off-line analysis was done by three fetal medicine experts (E1, E2 and E2), all were blinded to history and patient details. Measurements of the biparietal diameter (BPD), head circumference (HC), lateral ventricle (Vp) and transcerebellar diameter (TCD) were compared between examiners and to two-dimensional (2-D) measurements. Comparisons were made at two gestational age groups (≤22 and >22 weeks) and in presence and absence of brain anomalies. The intraclass coefficient showed a significantly high level of measurement agreement between 3-D examiners and 2-D, with values >0.9 throughout (p < 0.001). Bias was evident between 3-D examiners. E2 produced smaller measurements. The mean percentage difference between this examiner and the other two in BPD, HC, Vp and TCD measurements was significant, of 1.6%, 1%, 4.9% and 1.8%, respectively. E1 measured statistically larger for HC and TCD. E3 measured significantly larger for only BPD. The presence of anomalies was of no influence on the 3-D examiners' performance except for E3 who showed bias in BPD measurements only in cases with brain anomalies. Unlike other examiners, bias of E2 was only seen at gestational age group ≤22 weeks. Limits of agreement in measurements between observers were narrow for all parameters but were widest for the Vp measurements, being ±23% of the mean difference. Despite the above bias, the actual mean difference between examiners was small and unlikely to be of any clinical significance. Off-line measurement of fetal head biometry using 3-D volumes is reliable. In our study, presence of brain anomalies was unlikely to influence the reproducibility of measurements

  12. Major histocompatibility complex class II (MHC II) expression during the development of human fetal cerebral occipital lobe, cerebellum, and hematopoietic organs.

    PubMed

    Wierzba-Bobrowicz, T; Kosno-Kruszewska, E; Gwiazda, E; Lechowicz, W

    2000-01-01

    In adults, under physiological conditions proteins of the major histocompatibility complex, class II (MHC II) molecules are synthesized and then presented on the surface of the cells known under a common name as antigen presenting cells (APCs). Dendritic cells (DCs), microglia, macrophages, ameboid microglia and lymphocytes B are qualified as APCs. The aim of present study was to evaluate the expression of MHC II molecules in the central nervous system (CNS) and hematopoietic organs during the fetal development. Observations were made on the cerebral occipital lobe, cerebellum, thymus, spleen and liver of 30 normal human fetuses, between 11 and 22 week of gestation (GW). Histological, histochemical and immunohistochemical techniques were used to identify cells with expression of MHC II molecules. In the brain, MHC II molecules were detected on macrophages/ameboid microglia in meninges, choroid plexus and single cells of ramified microglia in deeper layers of the cortex and white matter. In the other organs besides macrophages and dendritic cells, MHC II molecules were also immunopositive in thymic epithelial cells, and in the spleen and liver also in other cells of stroma and lobule. The expression of MHC II molecules on so extensive population of cells, at an early stage of the fetal development, may evidence their significant involvement in histogenesis and morphogenesis. It seems that in adults the complex of MHC II with protein is originated from the foreign antigen. On the contrary, during normal fetal development the complex of MHC II with protein origins most probably from the fetus own structures.

  13. Growth and development of rabbit oocytes in vitro: effect of fetal bovine serum concentration on culture medium.

    PubMed

    Sugimoto, H; Kida, Y; Miyamoto, Y; Kitada, K; Matsumoto, K; Saeki, K; Taniguchi, T; Hosoi, Y

    2012-09-15

    The objective was to develop a culture system that produced blastocyst stage embryos from rabbit oocytes grown in vitro. Two experiments were performed. First, various concentrations of fetal bovine serum (FBS, 0, 0.05, 0.5 and 5%) were used in the culture medium for in vitro growth (IVG) of oocytes recovered from follicles 200 to 299 μm in diameter. Intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI) was performed on mature oocytes obtained after IVG for 8 days and in vitro maturation for 14 to 16 h. Rates of survival and pronuclear formation after ICSI were higher for oocytes grown in a medium with 0.05% FBS compared to oocytes grown in a medium lacking FBS (97.6 vs. 76.9%, 97.5 vs. 70%, P < 0.1). The rate of development to the blastocyst stage was also higher in the medium containing 0.05% FBS than in the medium lacking FBS (9.5 vs. 17.9%, P < 0.05). Next, using oocytes recovered from follicles 200 to 399 μm in diameter which were cultured in 0.05% FBS, oxygen consumption and the number of cells were analyzed. Blastocysts from oocytes grown in vitro with 0.05% FBS had reduced oxygen consumption and number of cells compared with those from ovulated oocytes (21.66 ± 4.54 × 10(14) vs. 50.19 ± 4.61 × 10(14) mol/sec, 244 ± 25 vs. 398 ± 24, P < 0.05). Rabbit oocytes grown in vitro with 0.05% FBS achieved pregnancy, but pregnancies were not maintained to term. In conclusion, the addition of 0.05% FBS to the culture medium for IVG improved developmental competence of rabbit oocytes grown in vitro.

  14. Role of development in reorganization of the SI forelimb-stump representation in fetally, neonatally, and adult amputated rats.

    PubMed

    Pluto, Charles P; Lane, Richard D; Chiaia, Nicolas L; Stojic, Andrey S; Rhoades, Robert W

    2003-09-01

    Rats that sustain forelimb removal on postnatal day (P) 0 exhibit numerous multi-unit recording sites in the forelimb-stump representation of primary somatosensory cortex (SI) that also respond to hindlimb stimulation when cortical GABAA+B receptors are blocked. Most of these hindlimb inputs originate in the medial SI hindlimb representation. Although many forelimb-stump sites in these animals respond to hindlimb stimulation, very few respond to stimulation of the face (vibrissae or lower jaw), which is represented in SI just lateral to the forelimb. The lateral to medial development of SI may influence the capacity of hindlimb (but not face) inputs to "invade" the forelimb-stump region in neonatal amputees. The SI forelimb-stump was mapped in adult (>60 days) rats that had sustained amputation on embryonic day (E) 16, on P0, or during adulthood. GABA receptors were blocked and subsequent mapping revealed increases in nonstump inputs in E16 and P0 amputees: fetal amputees exhibited forelimb-stump sites responsive to face (34%), hindlimb (10%), and both (22%); neonatal amputees exhibited 10% face, 39% hindlimb, and 5% both; adult amputees exhibited 10% face, 5% hindlimb, and 0% both, with approximately 80% stump-only sites. These results indicate age-dependent differences in receptive-field reorganization of the forelimb-stump representation, which may reflect the spatiotemporal development of SI. Results from cobalt chloride inactivation of the SI vibrissae region and electrolesioning of the dysgranular cortex suggest that normally suppressed vibrissae inputs to the SI forelimb-stump area originate in the SI vibrissae region and synapse in the dysgranular cortex.

  15. Morphometric studies on the structural development of the lung in Macaca fascicularis during fetal and postnatal life.

    PubMed Central

    Hislop, A; Howard, S; Fairweather, D V

    1984-01-01

    The structural development of the normal monkey lung (Macaca fascicularis) from 61 days of gestation to 14 days postnatal age has been described using quantitative morphometric techniques. The lung of the adult monkey has also been studied. The airway and arterial branching pattern has been traced using serial sections. The alveolar number and size have been estimated and the structure of the arteries after postmortem arterial injection has been assessed. Comparison of lung morphology in monkey and man shows that there are similarities in segmental arrangement, structure and branching pattern of airways, in arterial structure and in changes in the arteries after birth. Although there are differences in the number of lobes, the number of generations of different types of airways and the number and size of alveoli, the overall structure in the monkey is more similar to that in man than is the structure of the lung in species such as sheep, pig or rat. During fetal life the monkey lung passes through the same stages of development as the human fetus but at birth the monkey has a full complement of airways and mature alveoli. Postnatal growth of airways and alveoli is due to increase in size rather than to multiplication. In man there is an increase in the number of alveoli and alveolar ducts after birth as well as an increase in size. Despite the differences between the species it seems appropriate to use the monkey in experimental studies on the lung. Images Fig. 1 (cont.) Fig. 1 Fig. 4 (cont.) Fig. 4 PMID:6706842

  16. Minireview: The Impact of Antenatal Therapeutic Synthetic Glucocorticoids on the Developing Fetal Brain

    PubMed Central

    Peffer, Melanie E.; Zhang, Janie Y.; Umfrey, Leah; Rudine, Anthony C.; Monaghan, A. Paula

    2015-01-01

    The life-threatening, emotional, and economic burdens of premature birth have been greatly alleviated by antenatal glucocorticoid (GC) treatment. Antenatal GCs accelerate tissue development reducing respiratory distress syndrome and intraventricular hemorrhage in premature infants. However, they can also alter developmental processes in the brain and trigger adverse behavioral and metabolic outcomes later in life. This review summarizes animal model and clinical studies that examined the impact of antenatal GCs on the developing brain. In addition, we describe studies that assess glucocorticoid receptor (GR) action in neural stem/progenitor cells (NSPCs) in vivo and in vitro. We highlight recent work from our group on two GR pathways that impact NSPC proliferation, ie, a nongenomic GR pathway that regulates gap junction intercellular communication between coupled NSPCs through site-specific phosphorylation of connexin 43 and a genomic pathway driven by differential promoter recruitment of a specific GR phosphoisoform. PMID:25763611

  17. Examiner's finger-mounted fetal tissue oximetry

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kanayama, Naohiro; Niwayama, Masatsugu

    2014-06-01

    The best way to assess fetal condition is to observe the oxygen status of the fetus (as well as to assess the condition of infants, children, and adults). Previously, several fetal oximeters have been developed; however, no instrument has been utilized in clinical practice because of the low-capturing rate of the fetal oxygen saturation. To overcome the problem, we developed a doctor's finger-mounted fetal tissue oximeter, whose sensor volume is one hundredth of the conventional one. Additionally, we prepared transparent gloves. The calculation algorithm of the hemoglobin concentration was derived from the light propagation analysis based on the transport theory. We measured neonatal and fetal oxygen saturation (StO2) with the new tissue oximeter. Neonatal StO was measured at any position of the head regardless of amount of hair. Neonatal StO was found to be around 77%. Fetal StO was detected in every position of the fetal head during labor regardless of the presence of labor pain. Fetal StO without labor pain was around 70% in the first stage of labor and around 60% in the second stage of labor. We concluded that our new concept of fetal tissue oximetry would be useful for detecting fetal StO in any condition of the fetus.

  18. Examiner's finger-mounted fetal tissue oximetry.

    PubMed

    Kanayama, Naohiro; Niwayama, Masatsugu

    2014-06-01

    The best way to assess fetal condition is to observe the oxygen status of the fetus (as well as to assess the condition of infants, children, and adults). Previously, several fetal oximeters have been developed; however, no instrument has been utilized in clinical practice because of the low-capturing rate of the fetal oxygen saturation. To overcome the problem, we developed a doctor's finger-mounted fetal tissue oximeter, whose sensor volume is one hundredth of the conventional one. Additionally, we prepared transparent gloves. The calculation algorithm of the hemoglobin concentration was derived from the light propagation analysis based on the transport theory. We measured neonatal and fetal oxygen saturation (StO₂) with the new tissue oximeter. Neonatal StO₂ was measured at any position of the head regardless of amount of hair. Neonatal StO₂ was found to be around 77%. Fetal StO₂ was detected in every position of the fetal head during labor regardless of the presence of labor pain. Fetal StO₂ without labor pain was around 70% in the first stage of labor and around 60% in the second stage of labor. We concluded that our new concept of fetal tissue oximetry would be useful for detecting fetal StO₂ in any condition of the fetus.

  19. Survey of state water laws affecting coal slurry pipeline development

    SciTech Connect

    Rogozen, M.B.

    1980-11-01

    This report summarizes state water laws likely to affect the development of coal slurry pipelines. It was prepared as part of a project to analyze environmental issues related to energy transportation systems. Coal slurry pipelines have been proposed as a means to expand the existing transportation system to handle the increasing coal shipments that will be required in the future. The availability of water for use in coal slurry systems in the coal-producing states is an issue of major concern.

  20. How a Decade of Conflict Affected Junior Logistics Officer Development

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2011-03-22

    OMB control number. PLEASE DO NOT RETURN YOUR FORM TO THE ABOVE ADDRESS. 1. REPORT DATE (DD-MM-YYYY) 22-03-2011 2. REPORT TYPE Strategy Research...Form 298 (Rev. 8-98) Prescribed by ANSI Std. Z39.18 USAWC STRATEGY RESEARCH PROJECT HOW A DECADE OF CONFLICT AFFECTED JUNIOR...FORMAT: Strategy Research Project DATE: 22 March 2011 WORD COUNT: 5,662 PAGES: 28 KEY TERMS: Modularity, ARFORGEN, Leader Development

  1. Fetal programming of polycystic ovary syndrome

    PubMed Central

    Gur, Esra Bahar; Karadeniz, Muammer; Turan, Guluzar Arzu

    2015-01-01

    Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) is a common endocrine disorder that affects up to 6.8% of reproductive age women. Experimental research and clinical observations suggest that PCOS may originate in the very early stages of development, possibly even during intrauterine life. This suggests that PCOS is either genetically-transmitted or is due to epigenetic alterations that develop in the intrauterine microenvironment. Although familial cases support the role of genetic factors, no specific genetic pattern has been defined in PCOS. Several candidate genes have been implicated in its pathogenesis, but none can specifically be implicated in PCOS development. Hypotheses based on the impact of the intrauterine environment on PCOS development can be grouped into two categories. The first is the “thrifty” phenotype hypothesis, which states that intrauterine nutritional restriction in fetuses causes decreased insulin secretion and, as a compensatory mechanism, insulin resistance. Additionally, an impaired nutritional environment can affect the methylation of some specific genes, which can also trigger PCOS. The second hypothesis postulates that fetal exposure to excess androgen can induce changes in differentiating tissues, causing the PCOS phenotype to develop in adult life. This review aimed to examine the role of fetal programming in development of PCOS. PMID:26185601

  2. Influence of gestational salt restriction in fetal growth and in development of diseases in adulthood.

    PubMed

    Sakuyama, Hiroe; Katoh, Minami; Wakabayashi, Honoka; Zulli, Anthony; Kruzliak, Peter; Uehara, Yoshio

    2016-01-20

    Recent studies reported the critical role of the intrauterine environment of a fetus in growth or the development of disease in adulthood. In this article we discussed the implications of salt restriction in growth of a fetus and the development of growth-related disease in adulthood. Salt restriction causes retardation of fatal growth or intrauterine death thereby leading to low birth weight or decreased birth rate. Such retardation of growth along with the upregulation of the renin angiotensin system due to salt restriction results in the underdevelopment of cardiovascular organs or decreases the number of the nephron in the kidney and is responsible for onset of hypertension in adulthood. In addition, gestational salt restriction is associated with salt craving after weaning. Moreover, salt restriction is associated with a decrease in insulin sensitivity. A series of alterations in metabolism due to salt restriction are probably mediated by the upregulation of the renin angiotensin system and an epigenetic mechanism including proinflammatory substances or histone methylation. Part of the metabolic disease in adulthood may be programmed through such epigenetic changes. The modification of gene in a fetus may be switched on through environment factors or life style after birth. The benefits of salt restriction have been assumed thus far; however, more precise investigation is required of its influence on the health of fetuses and the onset of various diseases in adulthood.

  3. Neurobiological consequences of maternal cannabis on human fetal development and its neuropsychiatric outcome.

    PubMed

    Jutras-Aswad, Didier; DiNieri, Jennifer A; Harkany, Tibor; Hurd, Yasmin L

    2009-10-01

    Despite the high prevalence of marijuana use among pregnant women and adolescents, the impact of cannabis on the developing brain is still not well understood. However, growing evidence supports that the endocannabinoid system plays a major role in CNS patterning in structures relevant for mood, cognition, and reward, such as the mesocorticolimbic system. It is thus clear that exposure to cannabis during early ontogeny is not benign and potential compensatory mechanisms that might be expected to occur during neurodevelopment appear insufficient to eliminate vulnerability to neuropsychiatric disorders in certain individuals. Both human longitudinal cohort studies and animal models strongly emphasize the long-term influence of prenatal cannabinoid exposure on behavior and mental health. This review provides an overview of the endocannabinoid system and examines the neurobiological consequences of cannabis exposure in pregnancy and early life by addressing its impact on the development of neurotransmitters systems relevant to neuropsychiatric disorders and its association with these disorders later in life. It posits that studying in utero cannabis exposure in association with genetic mutations of neural systems that have strong relationships to endocannabinoid function, such as the dopamine, opioid, glutamate, and GABA, might help to identify individuals at risk. Such data could add to existing knowledge to guide public health platform in regard to the use of cannabis and its derivatives during pregnancy.

  4. How maternal malnutrition affects linear growth and development in the offspring.

    PubMed

    Papathakis, Peggy C; Singh, Lauren N; Manary, Mark J

    2016-11-05

    Maternal malnutrition is common in the developing world and has detrimental effects on both the mother and infant. Pre-pregnancy nutritional status and weight gain during pregnancy are positively related to fetal growth and development. Internationally, there is no agreement on the method of diagnosis or treatment of moderate or severe malnutrition during pregnancy. Establishing clear guidelines for diagnosis and treatment will be essential in elevating the problem. Possible anthropometric measurements used to detect and monitor maternal malnutrition include pre-pregnancy BMI, weight gain, and mid upper arm circumference. Food supplements have the potential to increase gestational weight gain and energy intake which are positively associated with fetal growth and development. Overall more studies are needed to conclude the impact of food/nutrient supplements on infant growth in undernourished pregnant women in developing countries. Currently, a study underway may provide much needed documentation of the benefits of treating malnutrition in pregnancy.

  5. Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders.

    PubMed

    Williams, Janet F; Smith, Vincent C

    2015-11-01

    Prenatal exposure to alcohol can damage the developing fetus and is the leading preventable cause of birth defects and intellectual and neurodevelopmental disabilities. In 1973, fetal alcohol syndrome was first described as a specific cluster of birth defects resulting from alcohol exposure in utero. Subsequently, research unequivocally revealed that prenatal alcohol exposure causes a broad range of adverse developmental effects. Fetal alcohol spectrum disorder (FASD) is the general term that encompasses the range of adverse effects associated with prenatal alcohol exposure. The diagnostic criteria for fetal alcohol syndrome are specific, and comprehensive efforts are ongoing to establish definitive criteria for diagnosing the other FASDs. A large and growing body of research has led to evidence-based FASD education of professionals and the public, broader prevention initiatives, and recommended treatment approaches based on the following premises:▪ Alcohol-related birth defects and developmental disabilities are completely preventable when pregnant women abstain from alcohol use.▪ Neurocognitive and behavioral problems resulting from prenatal alcohol exposure are lifelong.▪ Early recognition, diagnosis, and therapy for any condition along the FASD continuum can result in improved outcomes.▪ During pregnancy:◦no amount of alcohol intake should be considered safe;◦there is no safe trimester to drink alcohol;◦all forms of alcohol, such as beer, wine, and liquor, pose similar risk; and◦binge drinking poses dose-related risk to the developing fetus.

  6. Fetal skin wound healing.

    PubMed

    Buchanan, Edward P; Longaker, Michael T; Lorenz, H Peter

    2009-01-01

    The developing fetus has the ability to heal wounds by regenerating normal epidermis and dermis with restoration of the extracellular matrix (ECM) architecture, strength, and function. In contrast, adult wounds heal with fibrosis and scar. Scar tissue remains weaker than normal skin with an altered ECM composition. Despite extensive investigation, the mechanism of fetal wound healing remains largely unknown. We do know that early in gestation, fetal skin is developing at a rapid pace and the ECM is a loose network facilitating cellular migration. Wounding in this unique environment triggers a complex cascade of tightly controlled events culminating in a scarless wound phenotype of fine reticular collagen and abundant hyaluronic acid. Comparison between postnatal and fetal wound healing has revealed differences in inflammatory response, cellular mediators, cytokines, growth factors, and ECM modulators. Investigation into cell signaling pathways and transcription factors has demonstrated differences in secondary messenger phosphorylation patterns and homeobox gene expression. Further research may reveal novel genes essential to scarless repair that can be manipulated in the adult wound and thus ameliorate scar.

  7. The Factors that Affect Science Teachers' Participation in Professional Development

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Roux, Judi Ann

    Scientific literacy for our students and the possibilities for careers available in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) areas are important topics for economic growth as well as global competitiveness. The achievement of students in science learning is dependent upon the science teachers' effectiveness and experienced science teachers depend upon relevant professional development experiences to support their learning. In order to understand how to improve student learning in science, the learning of science teachers must also be understood. Previous research studies on teacher professional development have been conducted in other states, but Minnesota science teachers comprised a new and different population from those previously studied. The purpose of this two-phase mixed methods study was to identify the current types of professional development in which experienced, Minnesota secondary science teachers participated and the factors that affect their participation in professional development activities. The mixed-methods approach s utilized an initial online survey followed by qualitative interviews with five survey respondents. The results of the quantitative survey and the qualitative interviews indicated the quality of professional development experiences and the factors which affected the science teachers' participation in professional development activities. The supporting and inhibiting factors involved the availability of resources such as time and money, external relationships with school administrators, teacher colleagues, and family members, and personal intrinsic attributes such as desires to learn and help students. This study also describes implications for science teachers, school administrators, policymakers, and professional development providers. Recommendations for future research include the following areas: relationships between and among intrinsic and extrinsic factors, science-related professional development activities

  8. Fetal Alcohol Syndrome "Chemical Genocide."

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Asetoyer, Charon

    In the Northern Plains of the United States, 100% of Indian reservations are affected by alcohol related problems. Approximately 90% of Native American adults are currently alcohol users or abusers or are recovering from alcohol abuse. Alcohol consumption has a devastating effect on the unborn. Fetal Alcohol Syndrome (FAS) is an irreversible birth…

  9. Maternal and fetal outcome in elective versus emergency caesarean section in a developing country.

    PubMed

    Elvedi-Gasparović, Vesna; Klepac-Pulanić, Tajana; Peter, Branimir

    2006-03-01

    As the other major European countries, Croatia has also seen a marked increase in the rate of caesarean sections. The aim of this study was to determine the most common reasons for caesarean section, to compare emergency and elective caesarean section in regard to intraoperative and postoperative complications in both mother and child, and to assess the decision-to-delivery interval (DDI) in our clinic in comparison to current recommendations. Analyzing the results of our research we can say that the new-borns in the group with the elective caesarean section had considerably better Apgar index score in the first minute (p = 0.00056) and in the fifth minute (p = 0.054) than the children born in the group with emergency caesarean section. Children from the group with elective caesarean section had also less frequent asphyxia (p = 0.02315) and considerably less frequent resuscitation (p = 0.0143) than the children from the group with emergency caesarean sections. Only 39.73% of the emergency caesarean sections were performed within the "golden standard" period of 30 minutes. Regarding the data from the literature our results are similar with the ones from developed countries and 30 minute current standard seem to be not achievable.

  10. CUMULATIVE EFFECTS OF DIBUTYL PHTHALATE AND DIETHYLHEXYL PHTHALATE ON MALE RAT REPRODUCTIVE TRACT DEVELOPMENT: ALTERED FETAL STEROID HORMONES AND GENES.

    EPA Science Inventory

    Exposure to the plasticizers diethylhexyl phthalate (DEHP) and di(n-butyl) phthalate (DBP) during sexual differentiation causes male reproductive tract malformations in rats and rabbits. In the fetal male rat, these two phthalate esters decrease testosterone (T) production and i...

  11. Repeated ethanol exposure during late gestation decreases nephron endowment in fetal sheep.

    PubMed

    Gray, Stephen P; Kenna, Kelly; Bertram, John F; Hoy, Wendy E; Yan, Edwin B; Bocking, Alan D; Brien, James F; Walker, David W; Harding, Richard; Moritz, Karen M

    2008-08-01

    Maternal alcohol consumption during pregnancy can affect fetal development, but little is known about the effects on the developing kidney. Our objectives were to determine the effects of repeated ethanol exposure during the latter half of gestation on glomerular (nephron) number and expression of key genes involved in renal development or function in the ovine fetal kidney. Pregnant ewes received daily intravenous infusion of ethanol (0.75 g/kg, n=5) or saline (control, n=5) over 1 h from 95 to 133 days of gestational age (DGA; term is approximately 147 DGA). Maternal and fetal arterial blood samples were taken before and after the start of the daily ethanol infusions for determination of blood ethanol concentration (BEC). Necropsy was performed at 134 DGA, and fetal kidneys were collected for determination of total glomerular number using the physical disector/fractionator technique; at this gestational age nephrogenesis is completed in sheep. Maximal maternal and fetal BECs of 0.12+/-0.01 g/dl (mean+/-SE) and 0.11+/-0.01 g/dl, respectively, were reached 1 h after starting maternal ethanol infusions. Ethanol exposure had no effect on fetal body weight, kidney weight, or the gene expression of members of the renin-angiotensin system, insulin-like growth factors, and sodium channels. However, fetal glomerular number was lower after ethanol exposure (377,585+/-8,325) than in controls (423,177+/-17,178, P<0.001). The data demonstrate that our regimen of fetal ethanol exposure during the latter half of gestation results in an 11% reduction in nephron endowment without affecting the overall growth of the kidney or fetus or the expression of key genes involved in renal development or function. A reduced nephron endowment of this magnitude could have important implications for the cardiovascular health of offspring during postnatal life.

  12. Gestational dexamethasone alters fetal neuroendocrine axis.

    PubMed

    Ahmed, R G

    2016-09-06

    This study tested whether the maternal transport of dexamethasone (DEXA) may affect the development of the neuroendocrine system. DEXA (0.2mg/kg b.w., subcutaneous injection) was administered to pregnant rats from gestation day (GD) 1-20. In the DEXA-treated group, a decrease in maternal serum thyroxine (T4), triiodothyronine (T3), and increase in thyrotropin (TSH) levels (hypothyroid status) were observed at GDs 15 & 20 with respect to control group. The reverse pattern (hyperthyroid status) was observed in their fetuses at embryonic days (EDs) 15 & 20. Although the maternal body weight was diminished, the weight of the thyroid gland was increased at studied GDs as compared to the control group. The fetal growth retardation, hyperleptinemia, hyperinsulinism, and cytokines distortions (transforming growth factor-beta; TGF-β, tumor necrosis factor-alpha; TNF-α, and interferon-γ; IFN-γ) were noticed at examined EDs if compared to the control group. Alternatively, the maternofetal thyroid dysfunctions due to the maternal DEXA administration attenuated the levels of fetal cerebral norepinephrine (NE) and epinephrine (E), and elevated the levels of dopamine (DA) and 5-hydroxytryptamine (5-HT) at considered days. These alterations were age-dependent and might damage the nerve transmission. Finally, maternal DEXA might act as neuroendocrine disruptor causing dyshormonogenesis and fetal cerebral dysfunction.

  13. Aberrant development of post-movement beta rebound in adolescents and young adults with fetal alcohol spectrum disorders.

    PubMed

    Vakhtin, Andrei A; Kodituwakku, Piyadasa W; Garcia, Christopher M; Tesche, Claudia D

    2015-01-01

    Dependent on maternal (e.g. genetic, age) and exposure (frequency, quantity, and timing) variables, the effects of prenatal alcohol exposure on the developing fetus are known to vary widely, producing a broad range of morphological anomalies and neurocognitive deficits in offspring, referred to as fetal alcohol spectrum disorders (FASD). Maternal drinking during pregnancy remains a leading risk factor for the development of intellectual disabilities in the US. While few functional findings exist today that shed light on the mechanisms responsible for the observed impairments in individuals with FASD, animal models consistently report deleterious effects of early alcohol exposure on GABA-ergic inhibitory pathways. The post-motor beta rebound (PMBR), a transient increase of 15-30 Hz beta power in the motor cortex that follows the termination of movement, has been implicated as a neural signature of GABA-ergic inhibitory activity. Further, PMBR has been shown to be a reliable predictor of age in adolescents. The present study sought to investigate any differences in the development of PMBR between FASD and control groups. Beta event-related de-synchronization (ERD) and movement-related gamma synchronization (MRGS), although not clearly linked to brain maturation, were also examined. Twenty-two participants with FASD and 22 age and sex-matched controls (12-22 years old) underwent magnetoencephalography scans while performing an auditory oddball task, which required a button press in response to select target stimuli. The data surrounding the button presses were localized to the participants' motor cortices, and the time courses from the locations of the maximally evoked PMBR were subjected to wavelet analyses. The subsequent analysis of PMBR, ERD, and MRGS revealed a significant interaction between group and age in their effects on PMBR. While age had a significant effect on PMBR in the controls, no simple effects of age were detected in the FASD group. The FASD group

  14. Pregnancy in Hystricomorpha: gestational age and embryonic-fetal development of agouti (Dasyprocta prymnolopha, Wagler 1831) estimated by ultrasonography.

    PubMed

    Sousa, F C A; Alves, F R; Fortes, E A M; Ferraz, M S; Machado Júnior, A A N; de Menezes, D J A; de Carvalho, M A M

    2012-10-01

    Thirty-one pregnant agoutis, between Days 9 and 103 of gestation (Day 1 = day of detection of sperm in the vaginal smear), underwent B-mode ultrasonography; gestational sac diameter (GSD), crown-rump length (CRL), embryonic-fetal diameter (EFD), and placenta diameter (PD) were measured. There were positive correlations (P < 0.05) between GSD and CRL (r = 0.98), GSD and PD (r = 0.88), CRL and PD (r = 0.86), days of gestation (DG) and CRL (r = 0.85), and DG and PD (r = 0.73). The gestational sac was first observed on Day 14. The embryo was first seen on Day 18 in 9/31 of pregnant agoutis and on Day 22 in 20/31 of pregnant agoutis. Heartbeats were detected from the Day 25 and placentas were observed in 100% of the animals from Day 25. Early limb bud and ossification of the fetal skull were identified on Days 27 (15/31) and 45 (24/31), respectively. Fetal orientation (head and body) was evident from Day 40, the stomach, liver and lungs were identified on Day 50, the kidneys were reliably seen only on Day 55, and the aorta and vena cava were seen on Day 70. The fetal bowel and the urinary bladder were the last structures to be observed (Day 85). Ultrasonography was effective for early pregnancy diagnosis in agouti and for obtaining information on embryonic and fetal structures that could be used to predict gestational age and birth, thereby contributing to their reproductive management in captivity.

  15. The fetal circulation.

    PubMed

    Kiserud, Torvid; Acharya, Ganesh

    2004-12-30

    Accumulating data on the human fetal circulation shows the similarity to the experimental animal physiology, but with important differences. The human fetus seems to circulate less blood through the placenta, shunt less through the ductus venosus and foramen ovale, but direct more blood through the lungs than the fetal sheep. However, there are substantial individual variations and the pattern changes with gestational age. The normalised umbilical blood flow decreases with gestational age, and, at 28 to 32 weeks, a new level of development seems to be reached. At this stage, the shunting through the ductus venosus and the foramen ovale reaches a minimum, and the flow through the lungs a maximum. The ductus venosus and foramen ovale are functionally closely related and represent an important distributional unit for the venous return. The left portal branch represents a venous watershed, and, similarly, the isthmus aorta an arterial watershed. Thus, the fetal central circulation is a very flexible and adaptive circulatory system. The responses to increased afterload, hypoxaemia and acidaemia in the human fetus are equivalent to those found in animal studies: increased ductus venosus and foramen ovale shunting, increased impedance in the lungs, reduced impedance in the brain, increasingly reversed flow in the aortic isthmus and a more prominent coronary blood flow.

  16. Effects of women's stress-elicited physiological activity and chronic anxiety on fetal heart rate.

    PubMed

    Monk, Catherine; Myers, Michael M; Sloan, Richard P; Ellman, Lauren M; Fifer, William P

    2003-02-01

    This study examined the effects of pregnant women's acute stress reactivity and chronic anxiety on fetal heart rate (HR). Thirty-two healthy third trimester pregnant women were instrumented to monitor continuous electrocardiography, blood pressure, respiration, and fetal HR. Subjects completed the trait anxiety subscale of the State Trait Anxiety Index, then rested quietly for a 5-minute baseline period, followed by a 5-minute Stroop color-word matching task and a 5-minute recovery period. Fetal HR changes during women's recovery from a stressful task were associated with the women's concurrently collected HR and blood pressure changes (r =.63, p <.05). Fetal HR changes during recovery, as well as during women's exposure to the Stroop task, were correlated with their mothers' trait anxiety scores (r =.39, p <.05 and r = -.52, p <.01, respectively). Finally, a combination of measures of women's cardiovascular activity during recovery and trait anxiety scores accounted for two thirds of the variance in fetal HR changes during the same recovery period (r =.69, p <.001). The results from this study link changes in fetal behavior with acute changes in women's cardiovascular activity after psychological stress and women's anxiety status. This indicates that variations in women's emotion-based physiological activity can affect the fetus and may be centrally important to fetal development.

  17. Fetal lower urinary tract obstruction.

    PubMed

    Lissauer, David; Morris, Rachel K; Kilby, Mark D

    2007-12-01

    Fetal lower urinary tract obstruction affects 2.2 per 10,000 births. It is a consequence of a range of pathological processes, most commonly posterior urethral valves (64%) or urethral atresia (39%). It is a condition of high mortality and morbidity associated with progressive renal dysfunction and oligohydramnios, and hence fetal pulmonary hypoplasia. Accurate detection is possible via ultrasound, but the underlying pathology is often unknown. In future, magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) may be increasingly used alongside ultrasound in the diagnosis and assessment of fetuses with lower urinary tract obstruction. Fetal urine analysis may provide improvements in prenatal determination of renal prognosis, but the optimum criteria to be used remain unclear. It is now possible to decompress the obstruction in utero via percutaneous vesico-amniotic shunting or cystoscopic techniques. In appropriately selected fetuses intervention may improve perinatal survival, but long-term renal morbidity amongst survivors remains problematic.

  18. Haemodynamic assessment of fetal heart arrhythmias.

    PubMed

    Lingman, G; Dahlström, J A; Eik-Nes, S H; Marsál, K; Ohlin, P; Ohrlander, S

    1984-07-01

    The effects of fetal heart arrhythmias were examined serially in two pregnancies by three non-invasive methods: fetal ECG, fetal phonocardiography and ultrasonic measurement of fetal blood flow. In a case of supraventricular arrhythmia, there was evidence suggesting that the stroke volume varied with ventricular filling according to the Frank-Starling law. In a case of total atrioventricular block the mean blood flow in the fetal descending aorta and in the umbilical vein was within the normal range. Blood flow velocity in the inferior vena cava of the fetus reflected atrial contractions. In the phonocardiogram, a phenomenon similar to 'bruit de canon' was found. Both pregnancies had good outcomes and subsequent development of the infants was normal except for the persisting dysrhythmias. The two cases exemplify how fetal heart function can be assessed in utero.

  19. Nicotine alters bovine oocyte meiosis and affects subsequent embryonic development.

    PubMed

    Liu, Ying; Li, Guang-Peng; White, Kenneth L; Rickords, Lee F; Sessions, Benjamin R; Aston, Kenneth I; Bunch, Thomas D

    2007-11-01

    The effects of nicotine on nuclear maturation and meiotic spindle dynamics of bovine oocytes and subsequent embryonic development were investigated. Maturation rates (85%-94%) derived from nicotine treatments at 0.01 to 1.0 mM were similar to the control (86%), but significantly decreased at 2.0 to 6.0 mM. Haploid complements of metaphase II oocytes in 0.01 to 1.0 mM nicotine (approximately 90%) were similar to the control, while lower (ranged from 63% to 76%, P < 0.05 or P < 0.01) haploid oocytes were observed in the 2.0 to 6.0 mM nicotine groups. The majority of the PB1-free oocytes derived from 3.0 to 6.0 mM nicotine treatments were diploidy (2n = 60). Spindle microtubules changed from characteristically being asymmetrical in the controls to being equally distributed into two separate chromosome groups in the nicotine treatments. Nicotine disorganized the microfilament organization and inhibited the movement of anaphase or telophase chromosomes to the cortical area. The inhibited two chromosome groups became two spindles that either moved close in proximity or merged entirely together resulting in diploidy within the affected oocyte. Nicotine treatment significantly reduced the rate of cleavage and blastocyst development after parthenogenetic activation. Diploidy and cell number were drastically reduced in the resultant blastocysts. In conclusion, nicotine can alter the normal process of bovine oocyte meiosis and affects subsequent embryonic development.

  20. Training affects the development of postural adjustments in sitting infants.

    PubMed Central

    Hadders-Algra, M; Brogren, E; Forssberg, H

    1996-01-01

    1. The present study addressed the question of whether daily balance training can affect the development of postural adjustments in sitting infants. 2. Postural responses during sitting on a moveable platform were assessed in twenty healthy infants at 5-6, 7-8 and 9-10 months of age. Multiple surface EMGs and kinematics were recorded while the infants were exposed to slow and fast horizontal forward (Fw) and backward (Bw) displacements of the platform. After the first session the parents of nine infants trained their child's sitting balance daily. 3. At the youngest age, when none of the infants could sit independently, the muscle activation patterns were direction specific and showed a large variation. This variation decreased with increasing age, resulting in selection of the most complete responses. Training facilitated response selection both during Fw and Bw translations. This suggests a training effect on the first level of the central pattern generator (CPG) model of postural control. 4. Training also affected the development of response modulation during Fw translations. It accelerated the development of: (1) the ability to modulate EMG amplitude with respect to platform velocity and initial sitting position, (2) antagonist activity and (3) a distal onset of the response. These findings point to a training effect on the second level of the CPG model of postural adjustments. Images Figure 1 Figure 4 PMID:8735713

  1. Stress sensitivity and the development of affective disorders.

    PubMed

    Bale, Tracy L

    2006-11-01

    Depressive disorders are the most common form of mental illness in America, affecting females twice as often as males. The great variability of symptoms and responses to therapeutic treatment emphasize the complex underlying neurobiology of disease onset and progression. Evidence from human and animal studies reveals a vital link between individual stress sensitivity and the predisposition toward mood disorders. While the stress response is essential for maintenance of homeostasis and survival, chronic stress and maladaptive responses to stress insults can lead to depression or other affective disorders. A key factor in the mediation of stress responsivity is the neuropeptide corticotropin-releasing factor (CRF). Studies in animal models of heightened stress sensitivity have illustrated the involvement of CRF downstream neurotransmitter targets, including serotonin and norepinephrine, in the profound neurocircuitry failure that may underlie maladaptive coping strategies. Stress sensitivity may also be a risk factor in affective disorder development susceptibility. As females show an increased stress response and recovery time compared to males, they may be at an increased vulnerability for disease. Therefore, examination of sex differences in CRF and downstream targets may aid in the elucidation of the underlying causes of the increased disease presentation in females. While we continue to make progress in our understanding of mood disorder etiology, we still have miles to go before we sleep. As an encouraging number of new animal models of altered stress sensitivity and negative stress coping strategies have been developed, the future looks extremely promising for the possibility of a new generation of drug targets to be developed.

  2. Beneficial microbes affect endogenous mechanisms controlling root development

    PubMed Central

    Verbon, Eline H.; Liberman, Louisa M.

    2016-01-01

    Plants have incredible developmental plasticity, enabling them to respond to a wide range of environmental conditions. Among these conditions is the presence of plant growth-promoting rhizobacteria (PGPR) in the soil. Recent studies show that PGPR affect root growth and development within Arabidopsis thaliana root. These effects lead to dramatic changes in root system architecture, that significantly impact aboveground plant growth. Thus, PGPR may promote shoot growth via their effect on root developmental programs. This review focuses on contextualizing root developmental changes elicited by PGPR in light of our understanding of plant-microbe interactions and root developmental biology. PMID:26875056

  3. Defining Normal and Abnormal Fetal Growth: Promises and Challenges

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Jun; Merialdi, Mario; Platt, Lawrence D.; Kramer, Michael S.

    2010-01-01

    Normal fetal growth is a critical component of a healthy pregnancy and influences the long-term health of the offspring. However, defining normal and abnormal fetal growth has been a long-standing challenge in clinical practice and research. The authors review various references and standards that are widely used to evaluate fetal growth, and discuss common pitfalls of current definitions of abnormal fetal growth. Pros and cons of different approaches to customize fetal growth standards are described. The authors further discuss recent advances towards an integrated definition for fetal growth restriction. Such a definition may incorporate fetal size with the status of placental health measured by maternal and fetal Doppler velocimetry and biomarkers, biophysical findings and genetics. Although the concept of an integrated definition appears promising, further development and testing are required. An improved definition of abnormal fetal growth should benefit both research and clinical practice. PMID:20074690

  4. mRNA Quantification of NIPBL Isoforms A and B in Adult and Fetal Human Tissues, and a Potentially Pathological Variant Affecting Only Isoform A in Two Patients with Cornelia de Lange Syndrome

    PubMed Central

    Puisac, Beatriz; Teresa-Rodrigo, María-Esperanza; Hernández-Marcos, María; Baquero-Montoya, Carolina; Gil-Rodríguez, María-Concepción; Visnes, Torkild; Bot, Christopher; Gómez-Puertas, Paulino; Kaiser, Frank J.; Ramos, Feliciano J.; Ström, Lena; Pié, Juan

    2017-01-01

    Cornelia de Lange syndrome (CdLS) is a congenital developmental disorder characterized by craniofacial dysmorphia, growth retardation, limb malformations, and intellectual disability. Approximately 60% of patients with CdLS carry a recognizable pathological variant in the NIPBL gene, of which two isoforms, A and B, have been identified, and which only differ in the C-terminal segment. In this work, we describe the distribution pattern of the isoforms A and B mRNAs in tissues of adult and fetal origin, by qPCR (quantitative polymerase chain reaction). Our results show a higher gene expression of the isoform A, even though both seem to have the same tissue distribution. Interestingly, the expression in fetal tissues is higher than that of adults, especially in brain and skeletal muscle. Curiously, the study of fibroblasts of two siblings with a mild CdLS phenotype and a pathological variant specific of the isoform A of NIPBL (c.8387A > G; P.Tyr2796Cys), showed a similar reduction in both isoforms, and a normal sensitivity to DNA damage. Overall, these results suggest that the position of the pathological variant at the 3´ end of the NIPBL gene affecting only isoform A, is likely to be the cause of the atypical mild phenotype of the two brothers. PMID:28241484

  5. mRNA Quantification of NIPBL Isoforms A and B in Adult and Fetal Human Tissues, and a Potentially Pathological Variant Affecting Only Isoform A in Two Patients with Cornelia de Lange Syndrome.

    PubMed

    Puisac, Beatriz; Teresa-Rodrigo, María-Esperanza; Hernández-Marcos, María; Baquero-Montoya, Carolina; Gil-Rodríguez, María-Concepción; Visnes, Torkild; Bot, Christopher; Gómez-Puertas, Paulino; Kaiser, Frank J; Ramos, Feliciano J; Ström, Lena; Pié, Juan

    2017-02-23

    Cornelia de Lange syndrome (CdLS) is a congenital developmental disorder characterized by craniofacial dysmorphia, growth retardation, limb malformations, and intellectual disability. Approximately 60% of patients with CdLS carry a recognizable pathological variant in the NIPBL gene, of which two isoforms, A and B, have been identified, and which only differ in the C-terminal segment. In this work, we describe the distribution pattern of the isoforms A and B mRNAs in tissues of adult and fetal origin, by qPCR (quantitative polymerase chain reaction). Our results show a higher gene expression of the isoform A, even though both seem to have the same tissue distribution. Interestingly, the expression in fetal tissues is higher than that of adults, especially in brain and skeletal muscle. Curiously, the study of fibroblasts of two siblings with a mild CdLS phenotype and a pathological variant specific of the isoform A of NIPBL (c.8387A > G; P.Tyr2796Cys), showed a similar reduction in both isoforms, and a normal sensitivity to DNA damage. Overall, these results suggest that the position of the pathological variant at the 3´ end of the NIPBL gene affecting only isoform A, is likely to be the cause of the atypical mild phenotype of the two brothers.

  6. Assessment of fetal neurodevelopment via fetal magnetocardiography.

    PubMed

    Wakai, Ronald T

    2004-11-01

    Fetal magnetocardiography (fMCG) offers unique capabilities for assessment of fetal heart rate (FHR) and fetal behavior, which are fundamental aspects of neurodevelopment. The most important attribute of fMCG for FHR monitoring is its high precision, which allows accurate assessment of beat-to-beat fetal heart rate variability (FHRV), including respiratory sinus arrhythmia. Using mathematical indices to assess FHRV, we find that short- and long-term FHRV both increase during gestation but not in the same manner. The largest increases in short-term FHRV occur during the last trimester, while the largest increases in long-term FHRV occur early on, with smaller changes occurring during the last trimester. The fMCG also allows assessment of fetal activity. This results from the high sensitivity of the signal to the position and orientation of the fetal heart. FMCG actograms are therefore specific for fetal trunk movement, which are thought to be more important than isolated extremity movements and other small fetal movements. The ability to assess FHR, FHRV, and fetal trunk movement simultaneously makes fMCG a valuable tool for neurodevelopment research.

  7. Rearing environment affects development of the immune system in neonates.

    PubMed

    Inman, C F; Haverson, K; Konstantinov, S R; Jones, P H; Harris, C; Smidt, H; Miller, B; Bailey, M; Stokes, C

    2010-06-01

    Early-life exposure to appropriate microbial flora drives expansion and development of an efficient immune system. Aberrant development results in increased likelihood of allergic disease or increased susceptibility to infection. Thus, factors affecting microbial colonization may also affect the direction of immune responses in later life. There is a need for a manipulable animal model of environmental influences on the development of microbiota and the immune system during early life. We assessed the effects of rearing under low- (farm, sow) and high-hygiene (isolator, milk formula) conditions on intestinal microbiota and immune development in neonatal piglets, because they can be removed from the mother in the first 24 h for rearing under controlled conditions and, due to placental structure, neither antibody nor antigen is transferred in utero. Microbiota in both groups was similar between 2 and 5 days. However, by 12-28 days, piglets reared on the mother had more diverse flora than siblings reared in isolators. Dendritic cells accumulated in the intestinal mucosa in both groups, but more rapidly in isolator piglets. Importantly, the minority of 2-5-day-old farm piglets whose microbiota resembled that of an older (12-28-day-old) pig also accumulated dendritic cells earlier than the other farm-reared piglets. Consistent with dendritic cell control of T cell function, the effects on T cells occurred at later time-points, and mucosal T cells from high-hygiene, isolator pigs made less interleukin (IL)-4 while systemic T cells made more IL-2. Neonatal piglets may be a valuable model for studies of the effects of interaction between microbiota and immune development on allergy.

  8. Fetal akinesia deformation sequence in previable fetuses.

    PubMed

    Davis, J E; Kalousek, D K

    1988-01-01

    We reviewed the morphologic findings of 948 previable fetuses and identified the fetal akinesia deformation sequence (FADS) in 16 cases. In eight fetuses who had joint contractures, micrognathia, and pulmonary hypoplasia, the cause of fetal akinesia could be attributed to an abnormal intrauterine environment restricting fetal movement. The other eight fetuses had pterygia across the immobilized joints, in addition to main manifestations of FADS. Since most of the fetuses with pterygia were of only 8-9 weeks developmental age, we suggest that embryonic onset of immobility interferes with limb development and results in joint fixation and pterygium formation, in contrast to fetal-onset immobility, which causes joint contractures alone.

  9. Congenital cardiovascular malformations and the fetal circulation.

    PubMed

    Rudolph, A M

    2010-03-01

    After birth, gas exchange is achieved in the lung, whereas prenatally it occurs in the placenta. This is associated with differences in blood flow patterns in the fetus as compared with the postnatal circulation. Congenital cardiovascular malformations are associated with haemodynamic changes in the fetus, which differ from those occurring postnatally. Obstruction to cardiac outflow may alter myocardial development, resulting in progressive ventricular hypoplasia. Alteration of oxygen content may profoundly influence pulmonary vascular and ductus arteriosus responses. Interference in blood flow and oxygen content may affect cerebral development as a result of inadequate oxygen or energy substrate supply. The circulatory effects may be gestational dependent, related to maturation of vascular responses in different organs. These prenatal influences of congenital cardiac defects may severely affect immediate, as well as longterm, postnatal prognosis and survival. This has stimulated the development of techniques for palliation of disturbed circulation during fetal life.

  10. Bone development in black ducks as affected by dietary toxaphene

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Mehrle, P.M.; Finley, M.T.; Ludke, J.L.; Mayer, F.L.; Kaiser, T.E.

    1979-01-01

    Black ducks, Anas rubripes, were exposed to dietary toxaphene concentrations of 0, 10, or 50 μg/g of food for 90 days prior to laying and through the reproductive season. Toxaphene did not affect reproduction or survival, but reduced growth and impaired backbone development in ducklings. Collagen, the organic matrix of bone, was decreased significantly in cervical vertebrae of ducklings fed 50 μg/g, and calcium conentrations increased in vertebrae of ducklings fed 10 or 50 μg/g. The effects of toxaphene were observed only in female ducklings. In contrast to effects on vertebrae, toxaphene exposure did not alter tibia development. Toxaphene residues in carcasses of these ducklings averaged slightly less than the dietary levels.

  11. Mouse fetal whole intestine culture system for ex vivo manipulation of signaling pathways and three-dimensional live imaging of villus development.

    PubMed

    Walton, Katherine D; Kolterud, Asa

    2014-09-04

    Most morphogenetic processes in the fetal intestine have been inferred from thin sections of fixed tissues, providing snapshots of changes over developmental stages. Three-dimensional information from thin serial sections can be challenging to interpret because of the difficulty of reconstructing serial sections perfectly and maintaining proper orientation of the tissue over serial sections. Recent findings by Grosse et al., 2011 highlight the importance of three- dimensional information in understanding morphogenesis of the developing villi of the intestine(1). Three-dimensional reconstruction of singly labeled intestinal cells demonstrated that the majority of the intestinal epithelial cells contact both the apical and basal surfaces. Furthermore, three-dimensional reconstruction of the actin cytoskeleton at the apical surface of the epithelium demonstrated that the intestinal lumen is continuous and that secondary lumens are an artifact of sectioning. Those two points, along with the demonstration of interkinetic nuclear migration in the intestinal epithelium, defined the developing intestinal epithelium as a pseudostratified epithelium and not stratified as previously thought(1). The ability to observe the epithelium three-dimensionally was seminal to demonstrating this point and redefining epithelial morphogenesis in the fetal intestine. With the evolution of multi-photon imaging technology and three-dimensional reconstruction software, the ability to visualize intact, developing organs is rapidly improving. Two-photon excitation allows less damaging penetration deeper into tissues with high resolution. Two-photon imaging and 3D reconstruction of the whole fetal mouse intestines in Walton et al., 2012 helped to define the pattern of villus outgrowth(2). Here we describe a whole organ culture system that allows ex vivo development of villi and extensions of that culture system to allow the intestines to be three-dimensionally imaged during their development.

  12. Fetal Pulmonary Arterial Vascular Impedance Reflects Changes in Fetal Oxygenation at Near-Term Gestation in a Nonhuman Primate Model

    PubMed Central

    Arraut, Amaryllis Maria Elpida; Frias, Antonio E.; Hobbs, Theodore R.; McEvoy, Cindy; Spindel, Eliot R.; Rasanen, Juha

    2013-01-01

    Objective: We tested the hypothesis that fetal pulmonary arterial circulation reacts to changes in fetal oxygenation status at near-term gestation. Study Design: A total of 20 rhesus macaques underwent fetal Doppler ultrasonography at near-term gestation. Right pulmonary artery (RPA), umbilical artery (UA), ductus arteriosus (DA), and ductus venosus (DV) blood velocity waveforms were obtained, and pulsatility index (PI) values were calculated. Fetal right and left ventricular cardiac outputs were determined. Ultrasonographic data were collected during 3 maternal oxygenation states: room air (baseline), hyperoxemia, and hypoxemia. Results: Fetal RPA PI values increased (P < .05) during maternal hypoxemia and decreased (P < .05) during maternal hyperoxemia, compared with baseline. Maternal hyperoxemia increased (P < .05) DA PI values from baseline. Fetal cardiac outputs, UA, and DV PI values were not affected. Conclusions: Our results demonstrate that at near-term gestation, fetal pulmonary arterial circulation is a dynamic vascular bed that reflects acute and short-term changes in fetal oxygenation. PMID:22991382

  13. Uterine artery blood flow, fetal hypoxia and fetal growth

    PubMed Central

    Browne, Vaughn A.; Julian, Colleen G.; Toledo-Jaldin, Lillian; Cioffi-Ragan, Darleen; Vargas, Enrique; Moore, Lorna G.

    2015-01-01

    Evolutionary trade-offs required for bipedalism and brain expansion influence the pregnancy rise in uterine artery (UtA) blood flow and, in turn, reproductive success. We consider the importance of UtA blood flow by reviewing its determinants and presenting data from 191 normotensive (normal, n = 125) or hypertensive (preeclampsia (PE) or gestational hypertension (GH), n = 29) Andean residents of very high (4100–4300 m) or low altitude (400 m, n = 37). Prior studies show that UtA blood flow is reduced in pregnancies with intrauterine growth restriction (IUGR) but whether the IUGR is due to resultant fetal hypoxia is unclear. We found higher UtA blood flow and Doppler indices of fetal hypoxia in normotensive women at high versus low altitude but similar fetal growth. UtA blood flow was markedly lower in early-onset PE versus normal high-altitude women, and their fetuses more hypoxic as indicated by lower fetal heart rate, Doppler indices and greater IUGR. We concluded that, despite greater fetal hypoxia, fetal growth was well defended by higher UtA blood flows in normal Andeans at high altitude but when compounded by lower UtA blood flow in early-onset PE, exaggerated fetal hypoxia caused the fetus to respond by decreasing cardiac output and redistributing blood flow to help maintain brain development at the expense of growth elsewhere. We speculate that UtA blood flow is not only an important supply line but also a trigger for stimulating the metabolic and other processes regulating feto-placental metabolism and growth. Studies using the natural laboratory of high altitude are valuable for identifying the physiological and genetic mechanisms involved in human reproductive success. PMID:25602072

  14. Review of fetal and neonatal immune cytopenias.

    PubMed

    Lewin, Sharon; Bussel, James B

    2015-01-01

    The fetoplacental interface plays a unique role in pathologies of the fetus and neonate, and is increasingly being recognized for effects on fetal and neonatal development that resonate into adulthood. In this review, we will use several exemplary disorders involving each of the 3 types of blood cells to explore the effect of perinatal insults on subsequent development of the affected cell line. We will present new data regarding outcomes of infants treated prenatally for fetal and neonatal alloimmune thrombocytopenia (FNAIT) and contrast these with outcomes of infants affected by hemolytic disease of the fetus and newborn. We also will explore the differences between FNAIT and passively transferred antibodies, as seen in maternal idiopathic thrombocytopenic purpura. Neonatal hemochromatosis is an example of a disease that previously was largely fatal, but whose newly discovered etiology as an immune-mediated perinatal disorder has resulted in development of highly effective treatment. Finally, we will examine the interplay between lymphopoiesis and the placenta in an effort to further explore the phenomenon of neutropenia in preeclampsia, whose etiology remains unknown.

  15. Peri-conceptional changes in maternal exposure to sewage sludge chemicals disturbs fetal thyroid gland development in sheep.

    PubMed

    Hombach-Klonisch, Sabine; Danescu, Adrian; Begum, Farhana; Amezaga, Maria R; Rhind, Stewart M; Sharpe, Richard M; Evans, Neil P; Bellingham, Michelle; Cotinot, Corinne; Mandon-Pepin, Beatrice; Fowler, Paul A; Klonisch, Thomas

    2013-03-10

    Ewes were exposed to sewage sludge-fertilized pastures in a study designed investigate pre-conceptual and/or gestational exposure to environmental chemicals. The in utero impact on fetal thyroid morphology and function at day 110 (of 145) of pregnancy was then determined. Pre-conceptual exposure increased the relative thyroid organ weights in male fetuses. The number of thyroid follicles in thyroids of fetuses after pre-conceptual or gestational exposure was reduced. This correlated with an increase in Ki67 positive cells. Pre-conceptual exposure to sewage sludge reduced small blood vessels in fetal thyroids. Thyroid tissues of exposed fetuses contained regions where mature angio-follicular units were reduced exhibiting decreased immunostaining for sodium-iodide symporter (NIS). Fetal plasma levels of fT3 and fT4 in exposed animals, however, were not different from controls suggesting compensatory changes in the thyroid gland to maintain homeostasis in exposed fetuses. The regional aberrations in thyroid morphology may impact on the post-natal life of the exposed offspring.

  16. Children's toxicology from bench to bed--Drug-induced renal injury (4): Effects of nephrotoxic compounds on fetal and developing kidney.

    PubMed

    Suzuki, Masami

    2009-01-01

    The kidney is a major target of toxic compounds. Susceptibility of the kidney to toxic effects of compounds is attributed to the unique morphologic and physiologic features of this organ. Renal development and maturation begins in the fetal period and continuous throughout the postnatal period. The effects of noxious compounds on the kidney are influenced by the state of renal development and maturation. Therefore, to asses the renal toxic potential of a compound in fetuses and infants, the development and maturation of the kidney should be taken into account. Renal development and maturation involves both morphological and functional aspects. Renal development begins in the fetus and proceeds to partial functional capacity before birth. After birth, the kidney continues morphologic and functional maturation during the postnatal period of infancy. The fetal or infant kidney is vulnerable to the renal toxicity of certain compounds due to its morphological and functional characteristics. On the other hand, the infant kidney is sometimes more tolerant to nephrotoxic compounds compared to the adult kidney because of its immature glomerular filtration, concentrating capability and active transportation. Design and interpretation of studies in fetuses and infants regarding renal toxicity should include careful consideration of the state of renal development and maturation and of the mechanisms of renal injury.

  17. Effect of nebivolol treatment during pregnancy on the intrauterine fetal growth, mortality and pup postnatal development in the l-NAME-induced hypertensive rats.

    PubMed

    Altoama, Kassem; Mallem, Mohamed Yassine; Thorin, Chantal; Betti, Eric; Desfontis, Jean-Claude

    2016-11-15

    The present study was carried out to evaluate the effect of nebivolol vs. bisoprolol treatment on the intrauterine fetal growth, mortality and postnatal development in N(ω)-Nitro-l-arginine methyl ester hydrochloride (l-NAME)-induced hypertensive rats. Hypertension was induced in normotensive pregnant Wistar rats by daily administration of l-NAME (100mg/kg/day, in the drinking water) for the period of pregnancy. After 9 days of l-NAME treatment, rats with systolic and diastolic blood pressure (SBP and DBP) more than 140/90mmHg were considered hypertensive. Then, some of them were treated from day 11 to day 18 of pregnancy with nebivolol (8mg/kg/day) or bisoprolol (10mg/kg/day) via oral gavage. SBP, DBP and heart rate (HR) were re-evaluated by tail cuff method on day 19 of pregnancy and morphometrical or histological studies were performed on day 20. In addition, the mortality and postnatal development of newborn pups were assessed in all groups. The l-NAME administration during pregnancy induced an increase in SBP and DBP while HR did not change. Nebivolol or bisoprolol treatment completely prevented the elevation of SBP and DBP induced by l-NAME with a reduction in HR in pregnant and non-pregnant rats. The intra-uterine fetal growth and the postnatal development of newborn rats in nebivolol-treated hypertensive group were significantly lower vs. control and higher vs. bisoprolol-treated group with a higher mortality in the both types of treatments vs. control rats. The nebivolol and bisoprolol administration produce adverse effects on fetal growth and postnatal development, that limits their therapeutic use in females during pregnancy.

  18. Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders

    MedlinePlus

    ... Daily life skills, such as feeding and bathing Fetal alcohol syndrome is the most serious type of FASD. People with fetal alcohol syndrome have facial abnormalities, including wide-set and narrow ...

  19. Liquid-diet with alcohol alters maternal, fetal and placental weights and the expression of molecules involved in integrin signaling in the fetal cerebral cortex.

    PubMed

    Rout, Ujjwal K; Dhossche, Julie M

    2010-11-01

    Maternal alcohol consumption during pregnancy causes wide range of behavioral and structural deficits in children, commonly known as Fetal Alcohol Syndrome (FAS). Children with FAS may suffer behavioral deficits in the absence of obvious malformations. In rodents, the exposure to alcohol during gestation changes brain structures and weights of offspring. The mechanism of FAS is not completely understood. In the present study, an established rat (Long-Evans) model of FAS was used. The litter size and the weights of mothers, fetuses and placentas were examined on gestation days 18 or 20. On gestation day 18, the effects of chronic alcohol on the expression levels of integrin receptor subunits, phospholipase-Cγ and N-cadherin were examined in the fetal cerebral cortices. Presence of alcohol in the liquid-diet reduced the consumption and decreased weights of mothers and fetuses but increased the placental weights. Expression levels of β(1) and α(3) integrin subunits and phospholipase-Cγ(2) were significantly altered in the fetal cerebral cortices of mothers on alcohol containing diet. Results show that alcohol consumption during pregnancy even with protein, mineral and vitamin enriched diet may affect maternal and fetal health, and alter integrin receptor signaling pathways in the fetal cerebral cortex disturbing the development of fetal brains.

  20. Human fetal mesenchymal stem cells.

    PubMed

    O'Donoghue, Keelin; Chan, Jerry

    2006-09-01

    Stem cells have been isolated at all stages of development from the early developing embryo to the post-reproductive adult organism. However, the fetal environment is unique as it is the only time in ontogeny that there is migration of stem cells in large numbers into different organ compartments. While fetal neural and haemopoietic stem cells (HSC) have been well characterised, only recently have mesenchymal stem cells from the human fetus been isolated and evaluated. Our group have characterised in human fetal blood, liver and bone marrow a population of non-haemopoietic, non-endothelial cells with an immunophenotype similar to adult bone marrow-derived mesenchymal stem cells (MSC). These cells, human fetal mesenchymal stem cells (hfMSC), are true multipotent stem cells with greater self-renewal and differentiation capacity than their adult counterparts. They circulate in first trimester fetal blood and have been found to traffic into the maternal circulation, engrafting in bone marrow, where they remain microchimeric for decades after pregnancy. Though fetal microchimerism has been implicated in the pathogenesis of autoimmune disease, the biological role of hfMSC microchimerism is unknown. Potential downstream applications of hfMSC include their use as a target cell for non-invasive pre-natal diagnosis from maternal blood, and for fetal cellular and gene therapy. Using hfMSC in fetal therapy offers the theoretical advantages of avoidance of immune rejection, increased engraftment, and treatment before disease pathology sets in. Aside from allogeneic hfMSC in utero transplantation, the use of autologous hfMSC has been brought a step forward with the development of early blood sampling techniques, efficient viral transduction and clonal expansion. Work is ongoing to determine hfMSC fate post-transplantation in murine models of genetic disease. In this review we will examine what is known about hfMSC biology, as well as discussing areas for future research. The

  1. Sonography in Fetal Birth Weight Estimation

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Akinola, R. A.; Akinola, O. I.; Oyekan, O. O.

    2009-01-01

    The estimation of fetal birth weight is an important factor in the management of high risk pregnancies. The information and knowledge gained through this study, comparing a combination of various fetal parameters using computer assisted analysis, will help the obstetrician to screen the high risk pregnancies, monitor the growth and development,…

  2. Fetal Alcohol Exposure