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Sample records for affect fetal development

  1. 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…

  2. Fetal development

    MedlinePlus

    ... this page: //medlineplus.gov/ency/article/002398.htm Fetal development To use the sharing features on this page, ... Cunningham FG, Leveno KJ, Bloom SL, et al. Fetal growth and development. In: Cunningham FG, Leveno KL, Bloom SL, et ...

  3. Fetal development

    MedlinePlus

    Cunningham FG, Leveno KJ, Bloom SL, et al. Fetal growth and development. In: Cunningham FG, Leveno KL, Bloom SL, et al, eds. Williams Obstetrics . 23rd ed. New York, NY: McGraw-Hill; ... and fetal physiology. In: Gabbe SG, Niebyl JR, Simpson JL, ...

  4. 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. PMID:27230834

  5. Analgesic exposure in pregnant rats affects fetal germ cell development with inter-generational reproductive consequences

    PubMed Central

    Dean, Afshan; van den Driesche, Sander; Wang, Yili; McKinnell, Chris; Macpherson, Sheila; Eddie, Sharon L.; Kinnell, Hazel; Hurtado-Gonzalez, Pablo; Chambers, Tom J.; Stevenson, Kerrie; Wolfinger, Elke; Hrabalkova, Lenka; Calarrao, Ana; Bayne, Rosey AL; Hagen, Casper P.; Mitchell, Rod T.; Anderson, Richard A.; Sharpe, Richard M.

    2016-01-01

    Analgesics which affect prostaglandin (PG) pathways are used by most pregnant women. As germ cells (GC) undergo developmental and epigenetic changes in fetal life and are PG targets, we investigated if exposure of pregnant rats to analgesics (indomethacin or acetaminophen) affected GC development and reproductive function in resulting offspring (F1) or in the F2 generation. Exposure to either analgesic reduced F1 fetal GC number in both sexes and altered the tempo of fetal GC development sex-dependently, with delayed meiotic entry in oogonia but accelerated GC differentiation in males. These effects persisted in adult F1 females as reduced ovarian and litter size, whereas F1 males recovered normal GC numbers and fertility by adulthood. F2 offspring deriving from an analgesic-exposed F1 parent also exhibited sex-specific changes. F2 males exhibited normal reproductive development whereas F2 females had smaller ovaries and reduced follicle numbers during puberty/adulthood; as similar changes were found for F2 offspring of analgesic-exposed F1 fathers or mothers, we interpret this as potentially indicating an analgesic-induced change to GC in F1. Assuming our results are translatable to humans, they raise concerns that analgesic use in pregnancy could potentially affect fertility of resulting daughters and grand-daughters. PMID:26813099

  6. 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 ...

  7. Development of the human fetal testis.

    PubMed

    O'Shaughnessy, Peter J; Fowler, Paul A

    2014-05-01

    Masculinisation and adult fertility in the male are dependent on appropriate fetal endocrine programming. There is also now increasing evidence to indicate that the same mechanisms which regulate masculinisation also affect the general wellbeing of males throughout their life and, particularly, during ageing. Testosterone, secreted by the fetal testes, is the main factor regulating these processes and an understanding of fetal testis development in the human male is essential if we are to prevent adult reproductive disorders. This review focuses on what is known about human testis development and describes the effects of maternal smoking, a surrogate of possible xenotoxicant exposure on fetal testis and fetal liver function. PMID:24746112

  8. 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. PMID:21419855

  9. Hypoxia and fetal heart development.

    PubMed

    Patterson, A J; Zhang, L

    2010-10-01

    Fetal hearts show a remarkable ability to develop under hypoxic conditions. The metabolic flexibility of fetal hearts allows sustained development under low oxygen conditions. In fact, hypoxia is critical for proper myocardial formation. Particularly, hypoxia inducible factor 1 (HIF-1) and vascular endothelial growth factor play central roles in hypoxia-dependent signaling in fetal heart formation, impacting embryonic outflow track remodeling and coronary vessel growth. Although HIF is not the only gene involved in adaptation to hypoxia, its role places it as a central figure in orchestrating events needed for adaptation to hypoxic stress. Although "normal" hypoxia (lower oxygen tension in the fetus as compared with the adult) is essential in heart formation, further abnormal hypoxia in utero adversely affects cardiogenesis. Prenatal hypoxia alters myocardial structure and causes a decline in cardiac performance. Not only are the effects of hypoxia apparent during the perinatal period, but prolonged hypoxia in utero also causes fetal programming of abnormality in the heart's development. The altered expression pattern of cardioprotective genes such as protein kinase c epsilon, heat shock protein 70, and endothelial nitric oxide synthase, likely predispose the developing heart to increased vulnerability to ischemia and reperfusion injury later in life. The events underlying the long-term changes in gene expression are not clear, but likely involve variation in epigenetic regulation. PMID:20712587

  10. Fetal Health and Development

    MedlinePlus

    ... 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 that ...

  11. Fetal Neurobehavioral Development.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    DiPietro, Janet A.; And Others

    1996-01-01

    Investigated the ontogeny of fetal autonomic, motoric, state, and interactive functioning in 31 healthy fetuses from 20 weeks through term. Found that male fetuses were more active than female fetuses, and that greater maternal stress appraisal was associated with reduced fetal heart rate variability. Found that an apparent period of…

  12. Fetal Exposure to Maternal Inflammation Does Not Affect Postnatal Development of Genetically-Driven Ileitis and Colitis

    PubMed Central

    Hemmerling, Jana; Heller, Katharina; Hörmannsperger, Gabriele; Bazanella, Monika; Clavel, Thomas; Kollias, George; Haller, Dirk

    2014-01-01

    Background: Chronic inflammatory disorders have been increasing in incidence over the past decades following geographical patterns of industrialization. Fetal exposure to maternal inflammation may alter organ functions and the offspring's disease risk. We studied the development of genetically-driven ileitis and colitis in response to maternal inflammation using mouse models. Methods: Disease susceptible (TnfΔARE/+ and IL10−/−) and disease-free (Tnf+/+ and IL10−/+) offspring were raised in inflamed and non-inflamed dams. Ileal, caecal and colonic pathology was evaluated in the offspring at 8 or 12 weeks of age. Ly6G-positive cells in inflamed sections from the distal ileum and distal colon were analysed by immunofluorescence microscopy. Gene expression of pro-inflammatory cytokines was measured in whole tissue specimens by quantitative PCR. Microarray analyses were performed on laser microdissected intestinal epithelium. Caecal bacterial communities were assessed by Illumina sequencing of 16S rRNA amplicons. Results: Disease severity, the number of infiltrated neutrophils as well as Tnf and Il12p40 mRNA expression were independent of maternal inflammation in the offspring of mouse models for ileitis (TnfΔARE/+) and colitis (IL10−/−). Although TNF-driven maternal inflammation regulated 2,174 (wild type) and 3,345 (TnfΔARE/+) genes in the fetal epithelium, prenatal gene expression patterns were completely overwritten after birth. In addition, co-housing experiments revealed no change in phylogenetic diversity of the offspring's caecal microbiota in response to maternal inflammation. This is independent of the offspring's genotype before and after the onset of tissue pathology. Conclusions: Disease risk and activity in mouse models of chronic ileitis and colitis was independent of the fetal exposure to maternal inflammation. Likewise, maternal inflammation did not alter the diversity and composition of offspring's caecal microbiota, clearly demonstrating

  13. 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,…

  14. Maternal protein-energy malnutrition during early pregnancy in sheep impacts the fetal ornithine cycle to reduce fetal kidney microvascular development

    PubMed Central

    Dunford, Louise J.; Sinclair, Kevin D.; Kwong, Wing Y.; Sturrock, Craig; Clifford, Bethan L.; Giles, Tom C.; Gardner, David S.

    2014-01-01

    This paper identifies a common nutritional pathway relating maternal through to fetal protein-energy malnutrition (PEM) and compromised fetal kidney development. Thirty-one twin-bearing sheep were fed either a control (n=15) or low-protein diet (n=16, 17 vs. 8.7 g crude protein/MJ metabolizable energy) from d 0 to 65 gestation (term, ∼145 d). Effects on the maternal and fetal nutritional environment were characterized by sampling blood and amniotic fluid. Kidney development was characterized by histology, immunohistochemistry, vascular corrosion casts, and molecular biology. PEM had little measureable effect on maternal and fetal macronutrient balance (glucose, total protein, total amino acids, and lactate were unaffected) or on fetal growth. PEM decreased maternal and fetal urea concentration, which blunted fetal ornithine availability and affected fetal hepatic polyamine production. For the first time in a large animal model, we associated these nutritional effects with reduced micro- but not macrovascular development in the fetal kidney. Maternal PEM specifically impacts the fetal ornithine cycle, affecting cellular polyamine metabolism and microvascular development of the fetal kidney, effects that likely underpin programming of kidney development and function by a maternal low protein diet.—Dunford, L. J., Sinclair, K. D., Kwong, W. Y., Sturrock, C., Clifford, B. L., Giles, T. C., Gardner, D. S.. Maternal protein-energy malnutrition during early pregnancy in sheep impacts the fetal ornithine cycle to reduce fetal kidney microvascular development. PMID:25077559

  15. Methylomic trajectories across human fetal brain development.

    PubMed

    Spiers, Helen; Hannon, Eilis; Schalkwyk, Leonard C; Smith, Rebecca; Wong, Chloe C Y; O'Donovan, Michael C; Bray, Nicholas J; Mill, Jonathan

    2015-03-01

    Epigenetic processes play a key role in orchestrating transcriptional regulation during development. The importance of DNA methylation in fetal brain development is highlighted by the dynamic expression of de novo DNA methyltransferases during the perinatal period and neurodevelopmental deficits associated with mutations in the methyl-CpG binding protein 2 (MECP2) gene. However, our knowledge about the temporal changes to the epigenome during fetal brain development has, to date, been limited. We quantified genome-wide patterns of DNA methylation at ∼ 400,000 sites in 179 human fetal brain samples (100 male, 79 female) spanning 23 to 184 d post-conception. We identified highly significant changes in DNA methylation across fetal brain development at >7% of sites, with an enrichment of loci becoming hypomethylated with fetal age. Sites associated with developmental changes in DNA methylation during fetal brain development were significantly underrepresented in promoter regulatory regions but significantly overrepresented in regions flanking CpG islands (shores and shelves) and gene bodies. Highly significant differences in DNA methylation were observed between males and females at a number of autosomal sites, with a small number of regions showing sex-specific DNA methylation trajectories across brain development. Weighted gene comethylation network analysis (WGCNA) revealed discrete modules of comethylated loci associated with fetal age that are significantly enriched for genes involved in neurodevelopmental processes. This is, to our knowledge, the most extensive study of DNA methylation across human fetal brain development to date, confirming the prenatal period as a time of considerable epigenomic plasticity. PMID:25650246

  16. 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. PMID

  17. 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

  18. 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…

  19. Development of fetal brain renin–angiotensin system and hypertension programmed in fetal origins

    PubMed Central

    Mao, Caiping; Shi, Lijun; Xu, Feichao; Zhang, Lubo; Xu, Zhice

    2010-01-01

    Since the concept of fetal origins of adult diseases was introduced in 1980s, the development of the renin–angiotensin system (RAS) in normal and abnormal patterns has attracted attention. Recent studies have shown the importance of the fetal RAS in both prenatal and postnatal development. This review focuses on the functional development of the fetal brain RAS, and ontogeny of local brain RAS components in utero. The central RAS plays an important role in the control of fetal cardiovascular responses, body fluid balance, and neuroendocrine regulation. Recent progress has been made in demonstrating that altered fetal RAS development as a consequence of environmental insults may impact on “programming” of hypertension later in life. Given that the central RAS is of equal importance to the peripheral RAS in cardiovascular regulation, studies on the fetal brain RAS development in normal and abnormal patterns could shed light on “programming” mechanisms of adult cardiovascular diseases in fetal origins. PMID:19428956

  20. 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

  1. Stress and Androgen Activity During Fetal Development.

    PubMed

    Barrett, Emily S; Swan, Shanna H

    2015-10-01

    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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2015-01-01

    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. PMID:26643495

  3. DNA Methylation Landscapes of Human Fetal Development

    PubMed Central

    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.

    2015-01-01

    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. PMID:26492326

  4. B12 in fetal development.

    PubMed

    Pepper, M Reese; Black, Maureen M

    2011-08-01

    Vitamin B12 (cobalamin) is necessary for development of the fetus and child. Pregnant women who are vegetarian or vegan, have Crohn's or celiac disease, or have undergone gastric bypass surgery are at increased risk of B12 deficiency. Low serum levels of B12 have been linked to negative impacts in cognitive, motor, and growth outcomes. Low cobalamin levels also may be related to depression in adults. Some studies indicate that B12 supplementation may improve outcomes in children, although more research is needed in this area. Overall, the mechanisms of B12 action in development remain unclear. Further studies in this area to elucidate the pathways of cobalamin influence on development, as well as to prevent B12 deficiency in pregnant women and children are indicated. PMID:21664980

  5. WHO multicentre study for the development of growth standards from fetal life to childhood: the fetal component

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background In 2006 WHO presented the infant and child growth charts suggested for universal application. However, major determinants for perinatal outcomes and postnatal growth are laid down during antenatal development. Accordingly, monitoring fetal growth in utero by ultrasonography is important both for clinical and scientific reasons. The currently used fetal growth references are derived mainly from North American and European population and may be inappropriate for international use, given possible variances in the growth rates of fetuses from different ethnic population groups. WHO has, therefore, made it a high priority to establish charts of optimal fetal growth that can be recommended worldwide. Methods This is a multi-national study for the development of fetal growth standards for international application by assessing fetal growth in populations of different ethnic and geographic backgrounds. The study will select pregnant women of high-middle socioeconomic status with no obvious environmental constraints on growth (adequate nutritional status, non-smoking), and normal pregnancy history with no complications likely to affect fetal growth. The study will be conducted in centres from ten developing and industrialized countries: Argentina, Brazil, Democratic Republic of Congo, Denmark, Egypt, France, Germany, India, Norway, and Thailand. At each centre, 140 pregnant women will be recruited between 8 + 0 and 12 + 6 weeks of gestation. Subsequently, visits for fetal biometry will be scheduled at 14, 18, 24, 28, 32, 36, and 40 weeks (+/− 1 week) to be performed by trained ultrasonographers. The main outcome of the proposed study will be the development of fetal growth standards (either global or population specific) for international applications. Discussion The data from this study will be incorporated into obstetric practice and national health policies at country level in coordination with the activities presently conducted by WHO to implement the use

  6. Fetal cell-free DNA fraction in maternal plasma is affected by fetal trisomy.

    PubMed

    Suzumori, Nobuhiro; Ebara, Takeshi; Yamada, Takahiro; Samura, Osamu; Yotsumoto, Junko; Nishiyama, Miyuki; Miura, Kiyonori; Sawai, Hideaki; Murotsuki, Jun; Kitagawa, Michihiro; Kamei, Yoshimasa; Masuzaki, Hideaki; Hirahara, Fumiki; Saldivar, Juan-Sebastian; Dharajiya, Nilesh; Sago, Haruhiko; Sekizawa, Akihiko

    2016-07-01

    The purpose of this noninvasive prenatal testing (NIPT) study was to compare the fetal fraction of singleton gestations by gestational age, maternal characteristics and chromosome-specific aneuploidies as indicated by z-scores. This study was a multicenter prospective cohort study. Test data were collected from women who underwent NIPT by the massively parallel sequencing method. We used sequencing-based fetal fraction calculations in which we estimated fetal DNA fraction by simply counting the number of reads aligned within specific autosomal regions and applying a weighting scheme derived from a multivariate model. Relationships between fetal fractions and gestational age, maternal weight and height, and z-scores for chromosomes 21, 18 and 13 were assessed. A total of 7740 pregnant women enrolled in the study, of which 6993 met the study criteria. As expected, fetal fraction was inversely correlated with maternal weight (P<0.001). The median fetal fraction of samples with euploid result (n=6850) and trisomy 21 (n=70) were 13.7% and 13.6%, respectively. In contrast, the median fetal fraction values for samples with trisomies 18 (n=35) and 13 (n=9) were 11.0% and 8.0%, respectively. The fetal fraction of samples with trisomy 21 NIPT result is comparable to that of samples with euploid result. However, the fetal fractions of samples with trisomies 13 and 18 are significantly lower compared with that of euploid result. We conclude that it may make detecting these two trisomies more challenging. PMID:26984559

  7. [Studies on features of fetal movement and development of human fetus with use of fetal actogram].

    PubMed

    Tatsumura, M

    1991-08-01

    In 167 normal fetuses at 26 to 41 weeks of gestation, features of fetal movement and fetal development were investigated with use of actocardiograph in connection with a microcomputer system. The signals of fetal movement obtained by actocardiograph were stored in a floppy disc every 250 ms for 5 minutes through an AD-converter, and were analyzed every 5 minutes with the computer to reveal 3-dimensional (3-D) histograms. The 3-D histogram of fetal movement was composed of number, amplitude and interval of the signals in 11 voltage steps between 0.05 and 0.55V. The histogram clearly indicated state of fetal behavior, being either resting or active state. Fetal movement such as rolling movement, breathing movement and hiccup could be also identified with the computer analysis. In 68 normal fetuses at 14 to 41 weeks of gestation, the cross-correlation between fetal movement and fetal heart rate (FHR) were examined with the computer analysis. Finally fetal responses to acoustic and light stimulation were evaluated with use of pure-tone generator and flashlight. Acoustic stimulation was carried out in 53 normal fetuses at 28 to 41 weeks and light stimulation was performed in 116 normal fetuses at 18 to 41 weeks of gestation. The fetal responses were evaluated with actocardiogram. As a result, 1) Frequency in active state decreased and resting state increased as gestational weeks advanced, and then the frequencies of both state remained constant after 37 weeks of gestation. Duration of resting state also increased from 26 weeks to 37 weeks. These observations may suggest that fetal behavior can be established by 37 weeks of gestation. 2) Frequency in rolling movement decreased until 37 weeks of gestation, and then the movement increased during 38-41 weeks. Frequency in breathing movement increased to 33 weeks of gestation, then it remained constant. Hiccup occurred most frequently at 30-33 weeks, and it decreased thereafter. The function in fetal respiratory movement may

  8. 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. PMID:26092997

  9. Lifetime consequences of abnormal fetal pancreatic development

    PubMed Central

    Holemans, K; Aerts, L; Van Assche, F A

    2003-01-01

    There is ample evidence that an adverse intrauterine environment has harmful consequences for health in later life. Maternal diabetes and experimentally induced hyperglycaemia result in asymmetric overgrowth, which is associated with an increased insulin secretion and hyperplasia of the insulin-producing B-cells in the fetuses. In adult life, a reduced insulin secretion is found. In contrast, intrauterine growth restriction is associated with low insulin secretion and a delayed development of the insulin-producing B-cells. These perinatal alterations may induce a deficient adaptation of the endocrine pancreas and insulin resistance in later life. Intrauterine growth restriction in human pregnancy is mainly due to a reduced uteroplacental blood flow or to maternal undernutrition or malnutrition. However, intrauterine growth restriction can be present in severe diabetes complicated by vasculopathy and nephropathy. In animal models, intrauterine growth retardation can be obtained through pharmacological (streptozotocin), dietary (semi-starvation, low protein diet) or surgical (intrauterine artery ligation) manipulation of the maternal animal. The endocrine pancreas and more specifically the insulin-producing B-cells play an important role in the adaptation to an adverse intrauterine milieu and the consequences in later life. The long-term consequences of an unfavourable intrauterine environment are of major importance worldwide. Concerted efforts are needed to explore how these long-term effects can be prevented. This review will consist of two parts. In the first part, we discuss the long-term consequences in relation to the development of the fetal endocrine pancreas and fetal growth in the human; in the second part, we focus on animal models with disturbed fetal and pancreatic development and the consequences for later life. PMID:12562919

  10. Effect of maternal ethanol intake on fetal rabbit gastrointestinal development.

    PubMed

    Guo, W; Gregg, J P; Fonkalsrud, E W

    1994-08-01

    Maternal ingestion of alcohol is believed to be one factor that greatly influences the development of intrauterine growth retardation (IUGR) and postnatal growth failure. The present study was undertaken to determine whether maternally ingested alcohol adversely affects fetal growth and intestinal mucosal function. Five time-mated New Zealand white rabbit does were given ethanol intravenously (ETH group) (30% vol/vol; 1.0 g/kg/d) on gestational days (GD) 15 through 29 (term, 31 days). Two other rabbits received the same dose of ethanol. Maternal, fetal, and amniotic fluid alcohol levels were measured on GD 24. Four control rabbits (SH group) received normal saline (25 mL, intravenously). At term, the animals were delivered by cesarean section and killed. Seventeen of the 42 ETH fetuses survived the study period (43%); all 24 SH fetuses survived. On GD 24, within 60 minutes after maternal ethanol infusion, the fetal blood alcohol concentration (BAC) increased to 153 +/- 1.97 mg/dL (v maternal, 179 +/- 1.75 mg/dL); the amniotic ethanol level increased to 46 +/- 1.32 mg/dL. Birth weight was lower in the ETH group (46.88 +/- 2.21 g) than in the SH group (55.78 +/- 1.80 g) (P < .01). Disaccharidase activity, an indicator of intestinal mucosal function, showed that lactase activity (per milligram of protein) was significantly lower in ETH fetuses (2.60 x 10(-2) +/- 0.22 UE/mg) than in SH fetuses (3.50 x 10(-2) +/- 0.25 UE/mg) (P = .01); maltase activity and protein content were not affected significantly. This report provides the first description of the adverse effects of maternal alcohol ingestion on the small intestinal mucosal function of the fetal rabbit. PMID:7965501

  11. Influence of Infection During Pregnancy on Fetal Development

    PubMed Central

    Adams Waldorf, Kristina M.; McAdams, Ryan M.

    2014-01-01

    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 on fetal development including placental development and function, which can lead to fetal growth restriction. The classic group of teratogenic pathogens are referred to as “TORCH” (Toxoplasma gondii, Others like Treponema pallidum, Rubella virus, Cytomegalovirus, 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 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 impact 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. PMID:23884862

  12. 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,…

  13. Effect of short-term exposure to five industrial metals on the embryonic and fetal development of the mouse

    SciTech Connect

    Wide, M.

    1984-02-01

    An increase is expected in the world's industrial use of several metals, Al, Co, Mo, V, and W, among others. Very little is known about their possible effects on early mammalian development. Groups of mice were injected with compounds of these metals either before implantation or at early organogenesis. None of the metal compounds showed any interference with implantation, but all of them significantly affected fetal development: Al caused an increased frequency of fetal internal hemorrhage, Mo inhibited fetal normal weight gain, W increased the frequency of resorptions, and Al, Co, Mo, and V all interfered with fetal skeletal ossification.

  14. Tracking fetal development through molecular analysis of maternal biofluids☆

    PubMed Central

    Edlow, Andrea G.; Bianchi, Diana W.

    2015-01-01

    Current monitoring of fetal development includes fetal ultrasonography, chorionic villus sampling or amniocentesis for chromosome analysis, and maternal serum biochemical screening for analytes associated with aneuploidy and open neural tube defects. Over the last 15 years, significant advances in noninvasive prenatal diagnosis (NIPD) via cell-free fetal (cff) nucleic acids in maternal plasma have resulted in the ability to determine fetal sex, RhD genotype, and aneuploidy. Cff nucleic acids in the maternal circulation originate primarily from the placenta. This contrasts with cff nucleic acids in amniotic fluid, which derive from the fetus, and are present in significantly higher concentrations than in maternal blood. The fetal origin of cff nucleic acids in the amniotic fluid permits the acquisition of real-time information about fetal development and gene expression. This review seeks to provide a comprehensive summary of the molecular analysis of cff nucleic acids in maternal biofluids to elucidate mechanisms of fetal development, physiology, and pathology. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled: Molecular Genetics of Human Reproductive Failure. PMID:22542507

  15. The effect of Ramadan fasting on fetal development

    PubMed Central

    Karateke, Atilla; Kaplanoglu, Mustafa; Avci, Fazil; Kurt, Raziye Keskin; Baloglu, Ali

    2015-01-01

    Objective: To evaluate the effects of Ramadan fasting on fetal development and outcomes of pregnancy. Methods: We performed this study in Antakya State Hospital of Obstetrics and Child Care, between 28 June 2014 and 27 July 2014 (during the month of Ramadan). A total of two hundred forty healthy pregnant women who were fasting during Ramadan, were included in the groups. The three groups were divided according to the trimesters. The each group was consisted of 40 healthy pregnant women with fasting and 40 healthy pregnant women without fasting. For evaluating the effects of Ramadan on fetus, ultrasonography was performed on all pregnant women in the beginning and the end of Ramadan. We used the essential parameters for the following measurements: increase of fetal biparietal diameter (BPD), increase of fetal femur length (FL), increase of estimated fetal body weight (EFBW), fetal biophysical profile (BPP), amniotic fluid index (AFI), and umbilical artery systole/diastole (S/D) ratio. Results: No significant difference was found between the two groups for the fetal age, maternal weight gain (kilogram), estimated fetal weight gain (EFWG), fetal BPP, AFI, and umbilical artery S/D ratio. On the other hand, a statistically significant increase was observed in maternal weight in the second and third trimesters and a significant increase was observed in the amniotic fluid index in second trimester. Conclusion: In Ramadan there was no bad fetal outcome between pregnant women with fasting and pregnant women without fasting. Pregnant women who want to be with fast, should be examined by doctors, adequately get breakfast before starting to fast and after the fasting take essential calori and hydration. More comprehensive randomized studies are needed to explain the effects of fasting on the pregnancy and fetal outcomes. PMID:26870085

  16. Chinese herbal medicine for miscarriage affects decidual micro-environment and fetal growth

    PubMed Central

    Piao, L.; Chen, C.-P.; Yeh, C.-C.; Basar, M.; Masch, R.; Cheng, Y.-C.; Lockwood, C. J.; Schatz, F.; Huang, S. J.

    2015-01-01

    Introduction Intrauterine growth restriction complicates 5 - 10% of pregnancies. This study aims to test the hypothesis that Chinese herbal formula, JLFC01, affects pregnancy and fetal development by modulating the pro-inflammatory decidual micro-environment. Methods Human decidua from gestational age-matched elective terminations or incomplete/missed abortion was immunostained using anti-CD68 + anti-CD86 or anti-CD163 antibodies. qRT-PCR and Luminex assay measured the effects of JLFC01 on IL-1β- or TNF-α-induced cytokine expression in first trimester decidual cells and on an established spontaneous abortion/intrauterine growth restriction (SA/IUGR)-prone mouse placentae. The effect of JLFC01 on human endometrial endothelial cell angiogenesis was evaluated by average area, length and numbers of branching points of tube formation. Food intake, litter size, fetal weight, placental weight and resorption rate were recorded in SA/IUGR-prone mouse treated with JLFC01. qRT-PCR, Western blot and immunohistochemistry assessed the expression of mouse placental IGF-I and IGF-IR. Results In spontaneous abortion, numbers of decidual macrophages expressing CD86 and CD163 are increased and decreased, respectively. JLFC01 reduces IL-1β- or TNF-α-induced GM-CSF, M-CSF, C-C motif ligand 2 (CCL2), interferon-γ-inducible protein-10 (IP-10), CCL5 and IL-8 production in first trimester decidual cells. JLFC01 suppresses the activity of IL-1β- or TNF-α-treated first trimester decidual cells in enhancing macrophage-inhibited angiogenesis. In SA/IUGR-prone mice, JLFC01 increases maternal food intake, litter size, fetal and placental weight, and reduces fetal resorption rate. JLFC01 induces IGF-I and IGF-IR expression and inhibits M-CSF, CCL2, CCL5, CCL11, CCL3 and G-CSF expression in the placentae. Discussion JLFC01 improves gestation by inhibiting decidual inflammation, enhancing angiogenesis and promoting fetal growth. PMID:25771406

  17. 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. PMID:9355800

  18. In utero development of the fetal intestine: Sonographic evaluation and correlation with gestational age and fetal maturity in dogs.

    PubMed

    Gil, Elaine M U; Garcia, Daniela A A; Froes, Tilde R

    2015-09-15

    Modern high-resolution ultrasound images enable earlier assessment of measures of fetal development, including identification of the bowel. The aim of this study was to describe the ultrasonographic development of fetal bowel and correlate this with gestational age; define whether ultrasonographic visualization of fetal intestinal peristalsis in utero is associated with fetal maturation and determine whether there is a difference in fetal intestinal peristalsis detection time between fetuses delivered by normal delivery and cesarean. A cohort study was conducted in pregnant bitches presented to a veterinary hospital, to assess fetal bowel development. Statistical analysis was used to establish the correlation of the stage of fetal bowel development, as recorded by ultrasound, with outcomes of normal delivery and cesarean section. The study was broken down into three stages: the first stage was a descriptive analysis of fetal bowel development by ultrasound; the second stage compared time (in days) of bowel development between groups (normal delivery vs. cesarean); and the third stage was correlated survival probability for fetuses born on any day after detection of intestinal peristalsis with fetal maturity. All statistical analyses were significant. It is possible to monitor pregnancy progression using ultrasonographic evaluation of bowel development and this can reliably identify the end of fetal organogenesis. However, ultrasonographic detection of bowel segments with visualization of wall layers and associated peristalsis should not be used as the sole indicator for cesarean section planning because it is not possible to determine ultrasonographically whether the bowel is functional (mature). PMID:26025243

  19. The effects of betamethasone on allopregnanolone concentrations and brain development in preterm fetal sheep.

    PubMed

    Yawno, Tamara; Mortale, Monique; Sutherland, Amy E; Jenkin, Graham; Wallace, Euan M; Walker, David W; Miller, Suzanne L

    2014-10-01

    The risk of preterm delivery often means that the fetus will be exposed to exogenous synthetic glucocorticoids to accelerate fetal lung maturation, but effects on other organs, particularly the brain, are not understood. The neurosteroid allopregnanolone (AP) is a GABAA receptor agonist that influences fetal brain development and has neuroprotective properties. In this study we determined the impact of maternal glucocorticoid (betamethasone) administration on brain development and AP synthesis in preterm fetal sheep. Pregnant ewes underwent surgery at 105 days gestation for implantation of fetal catheters. Ewes received either betamethasone (BM; 11.4 mg; n=10) or vehicle (saline; n=5) by i.m injection on days five (BM1) and six (BM2) following surgery. Five fetuses of the BM treated ewes received an infusion of alfaxalone (20 mg) over 48 h commencing 30 min prior to BM1. All animals were euthanased on day 7, and the fetal brains collected to determine AP concentrations and histopathology. BM significantly reduced AP levels in the fetal brain and placental cotyledons, and also in fetal plasma without altering progesterone concentrations. There was a significant decrease in the number of myelinating cells in subcortical white matter, but no change to total oligodendrocyte number. Co-administration of the AP analogue analog alfaxalone with BM prevented this change in MBP expression. BM, given at a dose clinically prescribed to accelerate lung maturation, adversely affects neurosteroid levels in the preterm fetal brain, and affects the maturational profile of white matter development; these effects were mitigated by the co-administration of alfaxolone. PMID:24880086

  20. Prenatal exposure to bisphenol A disrupts mouse fetal lung development.

    PubMed

    Hijazi, Ayten; Guan, Haiyan; Cernea, Maria; Yang, Kaiping

    2015-12-01

    Developmental exposure to bisphenol A (BPA) is associated with lung dysfunction and diseases. However, it is unknown if this association has a fetal origin. The present study addressed this important question by examining the effects of BPA on fetal lung development. BPA was administered to pregnant mice via diet from embryonic day (E) 7.5 to E18.5. Fetal lungs were analyzed at E18.5 for changes in structure and expression of key molecular markers of lung maturation. Our main findings were as follows: BPA severely retards fetal lung maturation, as evidenced by diminished alveolar airspace (15% of control) and thickened septa, hallmarks of lung immaturity; this immaturity is characterized by aberrant alveolar epithelial type I cell differentiation because expression of the type I cell marker, aquaporin 5, but not type II cell markers, is dramatically reduced (16% of control); and the effects of BPA are likely mediated through the glucocorticoid signaling pathway because the expression of epithelial sodium channel γ and glutathione peroxidase, 2 well-known glucocorticoid target genes, is down-regulated in BPA-exposed fetal lungs, and, importantly, maternal dexamethasone administration rescues the lung immaturity phenotype. Taken together, these findings demonstrate that BPA disrupts fetal lung maturation, thus suggesting a fetal origin for BPA-induced lung diseases. PMID:26283537

  1. 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

  2. Vitamin D in fetal brain development.

    PubMed

    Eyles, Darryl; Burne, Thomas; McGrath, John

    2011-08-01

    In this review we will provide a concise summary of the evidence implicating a role for vitamin D in the developing brain. Vitamin D is known to affect a diverse array of cellular functions. Over the past 10 years data has emerged implicating numerous ways in which this vitamin could also affect the developing brain including its effects on cell differentiation, neurotrophic factor expression, cytokine regulation, neurotransmitter synthesis, intracellular calcium signaling, anti-oxidant activity, and the expression of genes/proteins involved in neuronal differentiation, structure and metabolism. Dysfunction in any of these processes could adversely affect development. Although there are many ways to study the effects of vitamin D on the developing CNS in vivo, we will concentrate on one experimental model that has examined the impact of the dietary absence of vitamin D in utero. Finally, we discuss the epidemiological data that suggests that vitamin D deficiency either in utero or in early life may have adverse neuropsychiatric implications. PMID:21664981

  3. 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…

  4. 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.

  5. Fetal urinoma and prenatal hydronephrosis: how is renal function affected?

    PubMed Central

    Oktar, Tayfun; Salabaş, Emre; Kalelioğlu, İbrahim; Atar, Arda; Ander, Haluk; Ziylan, Orhan; Has, Recep; Yüksel, Atıl

    2013-01-01

    Objective: In our study, the functional prognosis of kidneys with prenatal urinomas were investigated. Material and methods: Between 2006 and 2010, fetal urinomas were detected in 19 fetuses using prenatal ultrasonography (US), and the medical records were reviewed retrospectively. Of the 19 cases, the follow-up data were available for 10 fetuses. The gestational age at diagnosis, prognosis of urinomas, clinical course and renal functions were recorded. Postnatal renal functions were assessed with renal scintigraphy. Results: Unilateral urinomas and increased parenchyma echogenicity in the ipsilateral kidney were detected in all of the fetuses. Of the 10 fetuses with follow-up data, the option of termination was offered in 6 cases of anhydramnios, including 3 cases with signs of infravesical obstruction (a possible posterior urethral valve (PUV) and poor prognostic factors and 3 cases with unilateral hydronephrosis and increased echogenicity in the contralateral kidney. Only one family agreed the termination. The other 5 fetuses died during the early postnatal period. The average postnatal follow-up period in the 4 surviving fetuses was 22.5 months (8–38 months). One patient with a PUV underwent ablation surgery during the early postnatal period. In the postnatal period, none of the 4 kidneys that were ipsilateral to the urinoma were functional on scintigraphic evaluation. The urinomas disappeared in 3 cases. Nephrectomy was performed in one case due to recurrent urinary tract infections. Conclusion: In our study, no function was detected in the ipsilateral kidney of surviving patients with urinomas. Upper urinary tract dilatation accompanied by a urinoma is a poor prognostic factor for renal function. PMID:26328088

  6. In utero exposure to low doses of environmental pollutants disrupts fetal ovarian development in sheep

    PubMed Central

    Fowler, Paul A.; Dorà, Natalie J.; McFerran, Helen; Amezaga, Maria R.; Miller, David W.; Lea, Richard G.; Cash, Phillip; McNeilly, Alan S.; Evans, Neil P.; Cotinot, Corinne; Sharpe, Richard M.; Rhind, Stewart M.

    2008-01-01

    Epidemiological studies of the impact of environmental chemicals on reproductive health demonstrate consequences of exposure but establishing causative links requires animal models using ‘real life’ in utero exposures. We aimed to determine whether prolonged, low-dose, exposure of pregnant sheep to a mixture of environmental chemicals affects fetal ovarian development. Exposure of treated ewes (n = 7) to pollutants was maximized by surface application of processed sewage sludge to pasture. Control ewes (n = 10) were reared on pasture treated with inorganic fertilizer. Ovaries and blood were collected from fetuses (n = 15 control and n = 8 treated) on Day 110 of gestation for investigation of fetal endocrinology, ovarian follicle/oocyte numbers and ovarian proteome. Treated fetuses were 14% lighter than controls but fetal ovary weights were unchanged. Prolactin (48% lower) was the only measured hormone significantly affected by treatment. Treatment reduced numbers of growth differentiation factor (GDF9) and induced myeloid leukaemia cell differentiation protein (MCL1) positive oocytes by 25–26% and increased pro-apoptotic BAX by 65% and 42% of protein spots in the treated ovarian proteome were differently expressed compared with controls. Nineteen spots were identified and included proteins involved in gene expression/transcription, protein synthesis, phosphorylation and receptor activity. Fetal exposure to environmental chemicals, via the mother, significantly perturbs fetal ovarian development. If such effects are replicated in humans, premature menopause could be an outcome. PMID:18436539

  7. 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. PMID:27509872

  8. 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

  9. 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. PMID:26111581

  10. 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.

  11. 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…

  12. 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…

  13. Breed-specific fetal biometry and factors affecting the prediction of whelping date in the German shepherd dog.

    PubMed

    Groppetti, D; Vegetti, F; Bronzo, V; Pecile, A

    2015-01-01

    To date many studies have been published about predicting parturition by ultrasonographic fetal measurements in the bitch. Given that accuracy in such prediction is a key point for clinicians and breeders, formulas to calculate the whelping date were mainly obtained from small and medium sized dogs, which means poor accuracy when applied to large or giant breeds. Based on the evidence that ethnicity significantly affects fetal biometry in humans, this study aimed at developing a breed-specific linear regression model for estimating parturition date in the German shepherd dog. For this purpose, serial ultrasonographic measurements of the inner chorionic cavity diameter (ICC) and the fetal biparietal diameter (BP) were collected in 40 pregnant German shepherd bitches. The quality of the regression models for estimating parturition date was further verified in 22 other pregnant German shepherd bitches. Accuracy related to the prediction of parturition date was higher than previously reported: 94.5% and 91.7% within ±2 days interval based on ICC and BP measurements, respectively. Additional investigation was performed on the effects of maternal weight, age and litter size in relation to fetal biometry and to accuracy of parturition estimation. Moreover, the study included a comparison between hormonal and fetal ultrasound (ICC and BP) measurements connected to the estimation of whelping date. We suggest that specific equations from a single breed are likely to offer excellent accuracy, comparable to that of periovulatory progesteronemia, in parturition prediction and to avoid morphological variables present in dogs of different breeds even with the same size/weight. PMID:25510562

  14. Age, Sexual Dimorphism, and Disease Associations in the Developing Human Fetal Lung Transcriptome.

    PubMed

    Kho, Alvin T; Chhabra, Divya; Sharma, Sunita; Qiu, Weiliang; Carey, Vincent J; Gaedigk, Roger; Vyhlidal, Carrie A; Leeder, J Steven; Tantisira, Kelan G; Weiss, Scott T

    2016-06-01

    The fetal origins of disease hypothesis suggests that variations in the course of prenatal lung development may affect life-long pulmonary function growth, decline, and pathobiology. Many studies support the existence of differences in the developing lung trajectory in males and females, and sex-specific differences in the prevalence of chronic lung diseases, such as asthma and bronchopulmonary dysplasia. The objectives of this study were to investigate the early developing fetal lung for transcriptomic correlates of postconception age (maturity) and sex, and their associations with chronic lung diseases. We analyzed whole-lung transcriptome profiles of 61 females and 78 males at 54-127 days postconception (dpc) from nonsmoking mothers using unsupervised principal component analysis and supervised linear regression models. We identified dominant transcriptomic correlates for postconception age and sex with corresponding gene sets that were enriched for developing lung structural and functional ontologies. We observed that the transcriptomic sex difference was not a uniform global time shift/lag, rather, lungs of males appear to be more mature than those of females before 96 dpc, and females appear to be more mature than males after 96 dpc. The age correlate gene set was consistently enriched for asthma and bronchopulmonary dysplasia genes, but the sex correlate gene sets were not. Despite sex differences in the developing fetal lung transcriptome, postconception age appears to be more dominant than sex in the effect of early fetal lung developments on disease risk during this early pseudoglandular phase of development. PMID:26584061

  15. 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.

  16. 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.

  17. 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

  18. 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

  19. Sex-Specific Placental Responses in Fetal Development.

    PubMed

    Rosenfeld, Cheryl S

    2015-10-01

    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

  20. 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…

  1. Implementing Prenatal Diagnosis Based on Cell-Free Fetal DNA: Accurate Identification of Factors Affecting Fetal DNA Yield

    PubMed Central

    Barrett, Angela N.; Zimmermann, Bernhard G.; Wang, Darrell; Holloway, Andrew; Chitty, Lyn S.

    2011-01-01

    Objective Cell-free fetal DNA is a source of fetal genetic material that can be used for non-invasive prenatal diagnosis. Usually constituting less than 10% of the total cell free DNA in maternal plasma, the majority is maternal in origin. Optimizing conditions for maximizing yield of cell-free fetal DNA will be crucial for effective implementation of testing. We explore factors influencing yield of fetal DNA from maternal blood samples, including assessment of collection tubes containing cell-stabilizing agents, storage temperature, interval to sample processing and DNA extraction method used. Methods Microfluidic digital PCR was performed to precisely quantify male (fetal) DNA, total DNA and long DNA fragments (indicative of maternal cellular DNA). Real-time qPCR was used to assay for the presence of male SRY signal in samples. Results Total cell-free DNA quantity increased significantly with time in samples stored in K3EDTA tubes, but only minimally in cell stabilizing tubes. This increase was solely due to the presence of additional long fragment DNA, with no change in quantity of fetal or short DNA, resulting in a significant decrease in proportion of cell-free fetal DNA over time. Storage at 4°C did not prevent these changes. Conclusion When samples can be processed within eight hours of blood draw, K3EDTA tubes can be used. Prolonged transfer times in K3EDTA tubes should be avoided as the proportion of fetal DNA present decreases significantly; in these situations the use of cell stabilising tubes is preferable. The DNA extraction kit used may influence success rate of diagnostic tests. PMID:21998643

  2. Maternal influences on fetal microbial colonization and immune development

    PubMed Central

    Romano-Keeler, Joann; Weitkamp, Jörn-Hendrik

    2014-01-01

    While critical for normal development, the exact timing of establishment of the intestinal microbiome is unknown. For example, although preterm labor and birth have been associated with bacterial colonization of the amniotic cavity and fetal membranes for many years, the prevailing dogma of a sterile intrauterine environment during normal term pregnancies has been challenged more recently. While found to be a key contributor of evolution in the animal kingdom, maternal transmission of commensal bacteria may also constitute a critical process during healthy pregnancies in humans with yet unclear developmental importance. Metagenomic sequencing has elucidated a rich placental microbiome in normal term pregnancies likely providing important metabolic and immune contributions to the growing fetus. Conversely, an altered microbial composition during pregnancy may produce aberrant metabolites impairing fetal brain development and life-long neurological outcomes. Here we review the current understanding of microbial colonization at the feto-maternal interface and explain how normal gut colonization drives a balanced neonatal mucosal immune system, while dysbiosis contributes to aberrant immune function early in life and beyond. We discuss how maternal genetics, diet, medications, and probiotics inform the fetal microbiome in preparation for perinatal and postnatal bacterial colonization. PMID:25310759

  3. Infant Behavior and Development in Relation to Fetal Movement and Habituation.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Madison, Lynda S.; And Others

    1986-01-01

    Evaluated the relation between fetal activity and postnatal behavior and development by measuring the amount of fetal movement occurring in response to stimulation and the number of stimulus applications necessary for habituation. Preliminary evidence suggests that fetal rate of habituation predicts some aspects of infant behavior and development…

  4. Hypoxic acidemia, hyperviscosity, and maternal hypertension do not affect the umbilical arterial velocity waveform in fetal sheep.

    PubMed

    Morrow, R J; Adamson, S L; Bull, S B; Ritchie, J W

    1990-10-01

    The effect of hypoxic acidemia, hyperviscosity, and maternal hypertension on the umbilical arterial velocity waveform was studied in 23 chronically catheterized fetal sheep. Fetal hypoxic acidemia induced by lowering the maternal inspired oxygen concentration (n = 7) caused no change in the ratio of systolic/diastolic blood velocity even when fetal arterial pH was as low as 6.8. Fetal blood hyperviscosity (n = 7) induced by exchange transfusion with packed maternal blood cells increased placental vascular resistance by greater than or equal to 50% but had no significant effect on the systolic/diastolic ratio. Similarly, maternal hypertension induced by intravenous infusion of angiotensin II to the ewe (n = 9) did not affect the systolic/diastolic ratio despite a 50% increase in maternal arterial blood pressure. We conclude that umbilical arterial velocity waveform abnormalities observed in growth-restricted human fetuses are probably not a direct result of fetal hypoxemia or hyperviscosity or maternal hypertension. PMID:2220943

  5. Co-Expression Analysis of Fetal Weight-Related Genes in Ovine Skeletal Muscle during Mid and Late Fetal Development Stages

    PubMed Central

    Xu, Lingyang; Zhao, Fuping; Ren, Hangxing; Li, Li; Lu, Jian; Liu, Jiasen; Zhang, Shifang; Liu, George E.; Song, Jiuzhou; Zhang, Li; Wei, Caihong; Du, Lixin

    2014-01-01

    Background: Muscle development and lipid metabolism play important roles during fetal development stages. The commercial Texel sheep are more muscular than the indigenous Ujumqin sheep. Results: We performed serial transcriptomics assays and systems biology analyses to investigate the dynamics of gene expression changes associated with fetal longissimus muscles during different fetal stages in two sheep breeds. Totally, we identified 1472 differentially expressed genes during various fetal stages using time-series expression analysis. A systems biology approach, weighted gene co-expression network analysis (WGCNA), was used to detect modules of correlated genes among these 1472 genes. Dramatically different gene modules were identified in four merged datasets, corresponding to the mid fetal stage in Texel and Ujumqin sheep, the late fetal stage in Texel and Ujumqin sheep, respectively. We further detected gene modules significantly correlated with fetal weight, and constructed networks and pathways using genes with high significances. In these gene modules, we identified genes like TADA3, LMNB1, TGF-β3, EEF1A2, FGFR1, MYOZ1, and FBP2 correlated with fetal weight. Conclusion: Our study revealed the complex network characteristics involved in muscle development and lipid metabolism during fetal development stages. Diverse patterns of the network connections observed between breeds and fetal stages could involve some hub genes, which play central roles in fetal development, correlating with fetal weight. Our findings could provide potential valuable biomarkers for selection of body weight-related traits in sheep and other livestock. PMID:25285036

  6. IGF2 DNA methylation is a modulator of newborn’s fetal growth and development

    PubMed Central

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

    2012-01-01

    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. PMID:22907587

  7. Fetal alcohol syndrome and the developing socio-emotional brain.

    PubMed

    Niccols, Alison

    2007-10-01

    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 learning, memory, executive functioning, hyperactivity, impulsivity, and poor communication and social skills in individuals with FAS and fetal alcohol effects (FAE). Investigators using autopsy and brain imaging methods have identified microcephaly and structural abnormalities in various regions of the brain (including the basal ganglia, corpus callosum, cerebellum, and hippocampus) that may account for the neuropsychological deficits. Results of studies using newer brain imaging and analytic techniques have indicated specific alterations (i.e., displacements in the corpus callosum, increased gray matter density in the perisylvian regions, altered gray matter asymmetry, and disproportionate reductions in the frontal lobes) in the brains of individuals prenatally exposed to alcohol, and their relations with brain function. Future research, including using animal models, could help inform our knowledge of brain-behavior relations in the context of prenatal alcohol exposure, and assist with early identification and intervention. PMID:17669569

  8. 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. PMID:23796901

  9. Maternal Obesity Accelerates Fetal Pancreatic Beta Cell but not Alpha Cell Development in the Sheep: Prenatal and Postnatal Consequences

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Maternal obesity affects offspring weight, body composition and organ function, increasing diabetes and metabolic syndrome risk. We determined effects of maternal obesity and a high energy diet on fetal pancreatic development. Sixty days prior to breeding. ewes were assigned to control (C, 100% of N...

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

    PubMed

    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

  11. 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

  12. The effects of prenatal cannabis exposure on fetal development and pregnancy outcomes: a protocol

    PubMed Central

    Gunn, Jayleen K L; Rosales, Cecilia B; Center, Katherine E; Nuñez, Annabelle V; Gibson, Steven J; Ehiri, John E

    2015-01-01

    Introduction The effects of exposure to marijuana in utero on fetal development are not clear. Given that the recent legislation on cannabis in the US is likely to result in increased use, there is a need to assess the effects of prenatal cannabis exposure on fetal development and pregnancy outcomes. The objective of this review is to assess the effects of prenatal exposure to cannabis on pregnancy outcomes (including maternal and child outcomes). Methods and analyses Major databases will be searched from inception to the latest issue, with the aim of identifying studies that reported the effects of prenatal exposure to cannabis on fetal development and pregnancy outcomes. Two investigators will independently review all titles and abstracts to identify potential articles. Discrepancies will be resolved by repeated review, discussion and consensus. Study quality assessment will be undertaken, using standard protocols. To qualify for inclusion, studies must report at least one maternal or neonatal outcome post partum. Cross-sectional, case–control, cohort and randomised controlled trials published in English will be included. In order to rule out the effects of other drugs that may affect fetal development and pregnancy outcomes, studies will only be included if they report outcomes of prenatal exposure to cannabis while excluding other illicit substances. Data from eligible studies will be extracted, and data analysis will include a systematic review and critical appraisal of evidence, and meta-analysis if data permit. Meta-analysis will be conducted if three or more studies report comparable statistics on the same outcome. Ethics and dissemination The review which will result from this protocol has not already been conducted. Preparation of the review will follow the procedures stated in this protocol, and will adhere to the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses (PRISMA) guidelines. Ethical approval of data will not be required since

  13. Control of fetal lung development in the rabbit

    PubMed Central

    Chiswick, Malcolm L.; Ahmed, Ali; Jack, P. M. B.; Milner, R. D. G.

    1973-01-01

    In a series of experiments, one rabbit fetus of a litter was decapitated in utero on day 24 of gestation and allowed to develop for a further 5 days. One effect of fetal decapitation was a reduction in the concentration of osmiophilic inclusion bodies in the type II pneumocytes of the lung. However, certain physical properties of the lung which depend on the presence of a surface active alveolar lining were normal. When 50 μg tetracosactrin was given to the fetus subcutaneously at the time of decapitation, there was no reduction in the concentration of inclusion bodies. It is suggested that though the production of surface active material in the pneumocyte is controlled at least in part by fetal adrenocortical hormones, the extrusion of this material into the alveolar space may be subject to other control. This may have important implications for the prophylactic treatment of the respiratory distress syndrome in premature babies by antepartum maternal glucocorticoid therapy. ImagesFIG. PMID:4354779

  14. INFANT EMOTIONAL WITHDRAWAL: A PRECURSOR OF AFFECTIVE AND COGNITIVE DISTURBANCE IN FETAL ALCOHOL SPECTRUM DISORDERS

    PubMed Central

    Molteno, Christopher D.; Jacobson, Joseph L.; Carter, R. Colin; Dodge, Neil C.; Jacobson, Sandra W.

    2013-01-01

    Objectives To test the hypothesis that emotional withdrawal is an early indicator of affective disorder in infants heavily exposed prenatally to alcohol, which is independent of alcohol-related effects on mother-infant interaction and temperament and discriminated between children later diagnosed with fetal alcohol syndrome (FAS) and partial FAS (PFAS) and predicted cognitive and affective outcomes at 5 and 9 years. Methods The sample consisted of Cape Coloured (mixed ancestry) infants, whose mothers were interviewed during pregnancy regarding their alcohol consumption using a timeline follow-back approach. Infant emotional withdrawal (n = 85) was assessed on the Alarm Distress Baby Scale at 6.5 months. Mother-infant interaction was evaluated from video recordings during free play and infant feeding at 6.5 months (n = 127). Infant temperament was assessed by maternal report on the EAS Temperament Survey at 13 months (n = 119). Socio-demographic and psychological correlates of maternal alcohol use and infant iron deficiency were examined as potential confounders. The children were diagnosed for FAS/PFAS by expert dysmorphologists at 5 years; cognitive and affective function, at 5 and 9 years. Results Prenatal alcohol exposure was associated with increased infant emotional withdrawal and decreased activity, but unrelated to mother-infant interaction or any other temperament measures. Children later diagnosed with FAS and PFAS at 5 years exhibited more emotional withdrawal and less responsivity and activity as infants. Infant withdrawal, responsivity, quality of interaction, and maternal sensitivity also predicted poorer IQ and affective response at 5 and 9 years. When all four infant affective measures were examined simultaneously in a regression analysis, only infant emotional withdrawal persisted as a significant predictor of 9-year IQ. Conclusions This study is the first to document a direct effect of fetal alcohol exposure on emotional withdrawal in infancy

  15. Regulation of fetal lung development in response to maternal overnutrition.

    PubMed

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

    2013-11-01

    With the worldwide obesity epidemic, the proportion of women entering pregnancy overweight or obese has increased significantly in recent years. Babies born to obese women are at an increased risk of respiratory complications at birth and in childhood. In addition to maternal diabetes, there are a number of metabolic changes that the fetus of an overnourished mother experiences in utero that may modulate lung development and represent the mechanisms underlying the increased risk of respiratory complications. Herein we highlight a series of factors associated with the intrauterine environment of an overnourished mother that may impact on fetal lung development and lead to an increased risk of complications at birth or in postnatal life. PMID:24033542

  16. The implications of iodine and its supplementation during pregnancy in fetal brain development.

    PubMed

    Puig-Domingo, Manel; Vila, Lluis

    2013-05-01

    Iodine is an essential trace element for life. Its biological effects are a consequence of its incorporation to the thyroid hormones, which play a crucial role in fetal organogenesis, and in particular in brain development. This takes place during early gestation and involves delicate targeting throughout the central nervous system, including adequate neuronal growth, migration and myelinization at different sites, such as the cerebral cortex and neocortex, visual and auditory cortex, hippocampus and cerebellum. Pregnancy is characterized by an increased demand of thyroid hormones by the feto-placental unit in order to fulfill the necessary requirements of thyroid hormone action for normal fetal development. Up until week 20, the fetal thyroid is not fully active and therefore is completely dependent on the maternal thyroxine supply. Thus, the maternal thyroid has to adapt to this situation by producing about 1.5 fold more thyroxine. This requires that enzymatic gland machinery works normally as well as an adequate iodine intake, the principal substrate for thyroid hormone synthesis. Biological consequences of iodine related maternal hypothyroxinemia are currently very well known, by both experimental models and by clinical and epidemiological evidences. The associated disturbances parallel the degree of maternal thyroxine deficiency, ranging from increased neonatal morbi-mortality and severe mental dysfunction, to hyperactivity, attention disorders and a substantial decrease of IQ of an irreversible nature in the progeny of mothers suffering a deprivation of iodine during pregnancy. As a consequence, iodine deficiency is the leading preventable cause of mental impaired function in the world, affecting as many as 2 billion people (35.2% of the entire population). Prevention of fetal iodine deficiency - a problem of pandemic proportions- is feasible, provided that an iodine supply of 200-300 μg/day to the mother is ensured, before and throughout gestation as well

  17. 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

  18. [Docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) in fetal development and in infant nutrition].

    PubMed

    Valenzuela, A; Nieto, M S

    2001-10-01

    Docosahexanoic acid (C22:6, DHA) is a highly unsaturated omega-3 fatty acid that forms part of the central nervous and visual system structures. DHA is synthesized from its precursor, alfa-linolenic acid, that is also a omega-3 fatty acid and can be obtained from vegetable oils. Marine organisms, specially fish, are good nutritional sources of DHA and eicosapentanoic acid (EPA), another omega-3 fatty acid that has a role in vascular homeostasis. DHA increases membrane fluidity, improving neurogenesis, synaptogenesis and the activity of retinal photoreceptors. The fetus, specially during the last trimester of pregnancy, has high DHA requirements. It is provided by the mother, since fetal DHA synthesis is negligible in this stage of development. Breast feeding provides DHA to the child, but most replacement artificial formulas do not provide this fatty acid. At the present moment, many products for infant nutrition contain DHA. PMID:11775350

  19. Growth and development symposium: Fetal programming in animal agriculture

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Fetal programming is the ability to improve animal production and well-being by altering the maternal environment and holds enormous challenges and great opportunities for researchers and the animal industry. A symposium was held to provide an overview of current knowledge of fetal programming in re...

  20. Cervical dilatation and grade of doctor affects the interval between decision and result of fetal scalp blood sampling in labour.

    PubMed

    Rimmer, Stephanie; Roberts, Stephen A; Heazell, Alexander E P

    2016-08-01

    Fetal scalp blood sampling (FSBS) is used to provide information regarding fetal acid-base status during labour. This study assessed the interval between the decision to perform the procedure and obtaining the result and evaluated whether it is affected by cervical dilatation or the experience of the doctor. The median time for FSBS was 10 min. When cervical dilatation was ≤4 cm samples took approximately 30% longer to obtain. After adjustment for dilation, there were no significant differences between different grades of doctors. FSBS is shorter than previously reported; clinicians should be aware that procedures in early labour take longer to complete. PMID:26399279

  1. Biological mechanisms for nutritional regulation of maternal health and fetal development.

    PubMed

    Wu, Guoyao; Imhoff-Kunsch, Beth; Girard, Amy Webb

    2012-07-01

    This review paper highlights mechanisms for nutritional regulation of maternal health and fetal development. Malnutrition (nutrient deficiencies or obesity) in pregnant women adversely affects their health by causing or exacerbating a plethora of problems, such as anaemia, maternal haemorrhage, insulin resistance, and hypertensive disorders (e.g. pre-eclampsia/eclampsia). Maternal malnutrition during gestation also impairs embryonic and fetal growth and development, resulting in deleterious outcomes, including intrauterine growth restriction (IUGR), low birthweight, preterm birth, and birth defects (e.g. neural tube defects and iodine deficiency disorders). IUGR and preterm birth contribute to high rates of neonatal morbidity and mortality. Major common mechanisms responsible for malnutrition-induced IUGR and preterm birth include: (i) abnormal growth and development of the placenta; (ii) impaired placental transfer of nutrients from mother to fetus; (iii) endocrine disorders; and (iv) disturbances in normal metabolic processes. Activation of a series of physiological responses leading to premature and sustained contraction of the uterine myometrium also results in preterm birth. Recent epidemiologic studies have suggested a link between IUGR and chronic metabolic disease in children and adults, and the effects of IUGR may be carried forward to subsequent generations through epigenetics. While advanced medical therapies, which are generally unavailable in low-income countries, are required to support preterm and IUGR infants, optimal nutrition during pregnancy may help ameliorate many of these problems. Future studies are necessary to develop effective nutritional interventions to enhance fetal growth and development and alleviate the burden of maternal morbidity and mortality in low- and middle-income countries. PMID:22742599

  2. Subspecies differences in early fetal development and plasma pregnancy-associated glycoprotein concentrations in cattle.

    PubMed

    Mercadante, P M; Waters, K M; Mercadante, V R G; Lamb, G C; Elzo, M A; Johnson, S E; Rae, D O; Yelich, J V; Ealy, A D

    2013-08-01

    Inclusion of Bos indicus genetics improves production traits of cattle maintained in hot climates. Limited information exists detailing pregnancy-specific events as influenced by variable amounts of Bos indicus genetics. Three experiments were completed to examine the effect of Bos taurus and Bos indicus genotypes on fetal size and plasma pregnancy-associated glycoprotein (PAG) concentrations. In all experiments, cows were bred by AI after synchronization of ovulation. Fetal measurements were completed by transrectal ultrasonography and plasma PAG concentrations were quantified from plasma harvested the day of each fetal measurement. In Exp. 1, fetal size and plasma PAG concentrations were measured at d 53 of pregnancy in cows composed of various fractions of Angus and Brahman (n = 9 to 21 cows/group). Fetus size was greater in cows containing >80% Angus genetics compared with cows containing <80% Angus influence (3.40 ± 0.28 vs. 2.86 ± 0.28 cm crown-rump length; P < 0.01). Plasma PAG concentrations were reduced (P < 0.01) in cows containing >80% Angus genetics when compared with their contemporaries (6.0 ± 1.5 ng/mL vs. 9.4 ± 1.5 ng/mL). In Exp. 2, fetal measurements and plasma PAG concentrations were determined at d 35 and 62 of pregnancy in Angus and Brangus cows. Breed did not affect fetus size at d 35, but Angus cows contained larger fetuses than Brangus cows at d 62 [3.0 ± 0.03 vs. 2.8 ± 0.03 cm crown-nose length (CNL; P > 0.01)]. Plasma PAG concentrations were not different between breed at d 35 and 62 (P > 0.1). In Exp. 3, fetal measurements and plasma samples were collected at d 33/34, 40/41, 47/48, and 54/55 post-AI in Angus and Brangus cows. Fetus size was not different (P > 0.05) between genotypes on d 33/34, 40/41, and 47/48. Angus fetuses were larger than Brangus fetuses at d 54/55 (2.1 ± 0.03 vs. 1.9 ± 0.03 cm CNL; P = 0.001). Plasma PAG concentrations were less in Angus than Brangus cows at each time point (average 4.9 ± 0.9 vs. 8.2 ± 0

  3. Methyl Donor Deficiency Affects Fetal Programming of Gastric Ghrelin Cell Organization and Function in the Rat

    PubMed Central

    Bossenmeyer-Pourié, Carine; Blaise, Sébastien; Pourié, Grégory; Tomasetto, Catherine; Audonnet, Sandra; Ortiou, Sandrine; Koziel, Violette; Rio, Marie-Christine; Daval, Jean-Luc; Guéant, Jean-Louis; Beck, Bernard

    2010-01-01

    Methyl donor deficiency (MDD) during pregnancy influences intrauterine development. Ghrelin is expressed in the stomach of fetuses and influences fetal growth, but MDD influence on gastric ghrelin is unknown. We examined the gastric ghrelin system in MDD-induced intrauterine growth retardation. By using specific markers and approaches (such as periodic acid–Schiff, bromodeoxyuridine, homocysteine, terminal deoxynucleotidyl transferase biotin-dUTP nick end labeling, immunostaining, reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction), we studied the gastric oxyntic mucosa cellular organization and ghrelin gene expression in the mucosa in 20-day-old fetuses and weanling pups, and plasma ghrelin concentration in weanling rat pups of dams either normally fed or deprived of choline, folate, vitamin B6, and vitamin B12 during gestation and suckling periods. MDD fetuses weighed less than controls; the weight deficit reached 57% at weaning (P < 0.001). Both at the end of gestation and at weaning, they presented with an aberrant gastric oxyntic mucosa formation with loss of cell polarity, anarchic cell migration, abnormal progenitor differentiation, apoptosis, and signs of surface layer erosion. Ghrelin cells were abnormally located in the pit region of oxyntic glands. At weaning, plasma ghrelin levels were decreased (−28%; P < 0.001) despite unchanged mRNA expression in the stomach. This decrease was associated with lower body weight. Taken together, these data indicate that one mechanism through which MDD influences fetal programming is the remodeling of gastric cellular organization, leading to dysfunction of the ghrelin system and dramatic effects on growth. PMID:19948829

  4. Insights Into Fetal and Neonatal Development Through Analysis of Cell-Free RNA in Body Fluids

    PubMed Central

    Bianchi, Diana W.; Maron, Jill L.; Johnson, Kirby L.

    2010-01-01

    The use of cell-free nucleic acids in the circulation of pregnant women for noninvasive prenatal diagnosis is arguably one of the hottest current topics in prenatal medicine. Between 1997 and the present era this field has gone from basic research to clinical application for diagnosis of fetal gender and Rhesus D status. Over the next few years it is likely that noninvasive prenatal diagnosis for Down syndrome will also be possible. Here we summarize current and future clinical applications of analyzing cell-free fetal DNA and RNA in both maternal and neonatal body fluids, including maternal plasma, serum, whole blood, amniotic fluid, and neonatal saliva. We describe methods to evaluate normal and abnormal fetal and neonatal development using gene expression microarrays. We also discuss the ways in which differentially-regulated gene lists can advance knowledge of both fetal and neonatal biology, as well as suggest novel possibilities for fetal and neonatal treatment. PMID:20851538

  5. 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. PMID:26902115

  6. Current Research in Affective Development.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Strayer, Janet

    1985-01-01

    Current research concerning affective development in infants and children is selectively reviewed. The focus of findings and discussion is on three general and related topics: (1) expression of emotion and affective interaction in infancy; (2) socialization and regulation of emotion; (3) comprehension of emotions and empathy with others by…

  7. [Development of the affect system].

    PubMed

    Moser, U; Von Zeppelin, I

    1996-01-01

    The authors show that the development of the affect system commences with affects of an exclusively communicative nature. These regulate the relationship between subject and object. On a different plane they also provide information on the feeling of self deriving from the interaction. Affect is seen throughout as a special kind of information. One section of the article is given over to intensity regulation and early affect defenses. The development of cognitive processes leads to the integration of affect systems and cognitive structures. In the pre-conceptual concretistic phase, fantasies change the object relation in such a way as to make unpleasant affects disappear. Only at a later stage do fantasies acquire the capacity to deal with affects. Ultimately, the affect system is grounded on an invariant relationship feeling. On a variety of different levels it displays the features typical of situation theory and the theory of the representational world, thus making it possible to entertain complex object relations. In this process the various planes of the affect system are retained and practised. Finally, the authors discuss the consequences of their remarks for the understanding of psychic disturbances and the therapies brought to bear on them. PMID:8584745

  8. FETAL DEXAMETHASONE EXPOSURE ACCELERATES DEVELOPMENT OF RENAL FUNCTION: RELATIONSHIP TO DOSE, CELL DIFFERENTIATION AND GROWTH INHIBITION

    EPA Science Inventory

    Fetal exposure to high doses of glucocorticoids slows cellular development and impairs organ performance, in association with growth retardation. evertheless, low doses of glucocorticoids may enhance cell differentiation and accelerate specific functions. he current study examine...

  9. Modulation of Serotonin Transporter Function during Fetal Development Causes Dilated Heart Cardiomyopathy and Lifelong Behavioral Abnormalities

    PubMed Central

    Noorlander, Cornelle W.; Ververs, Frederique F. T.; Nikkels, Peter G. J.; van Echteld, Cees J. A.; Visser, Gerard H. A.; Smidt, Marten P.

    2008-01-01

    Background Women are at great risk for mood and anxiety disorders during their childbearing years and may become pregnant while taking antidepressant drugs. In the treatment of depression and anxiety disorders, selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) are the most frequently prescribed drugs, while it is largely unknown whether this medication affects the development of the central nervous system of the fetus. The possible effects are the product of placental transfer efficiency, time of administration and dose of the respective SSRI. Methodology/Principal Findings In order to attain this information we have setup a study in which these parameters were measured and the consequences in terms of physiology and behavior are mapped. The placental transfer of fluoxetine and fluvoxamine, two commonly used SSRIs, was similar between mouse and human, indicating that the fetal exposure of these SSRIs in mice is comparable with the human situation. Fluvoxamine displayed a relatively low placental transfer, while fluoxetine showed a relatively high placental transfer. Using clinical doses of fluoxetine the mortality of the offspring increased dramatically, whereas the mortality was unaffected after fluvoxamine exposure. The majority of the fluoxetine-exposed offspring died postnatally of severe heart failure caused by dilated cardiomyopathy. Molecular analysis of fluoxetine-exposed offspring showed long-term alterations in serotonin transporter levels in the raphe nucleus. Furthermore, prenatal fluoxetine exposure resulted in depressive- and anxiety-related behavior in adult mice. In contrast, fluvoxamine-exposed mice did not show alterations in behavior and serotonin transporter levels. Decreasing the dose of fluoxetine resulted in higher survival rates and less dramatic effects on the long-term behavior in the offspring. Conclusions These results indicate that prenatal fluoxetine exposure affects fetal development, resulting in cardiomyopathy and a higher

  10. Dietary choline deficiency alters global and gene-specific DNA methylation in the developing hippocampus of mouse fetal brains.

    PubMed

    Niculescu, Mihai D; Craciunescu, Corneliu N; Zeisel, Steven H

    2006-01-01

    The availability of choline during critical periods of fetal development alters hippocampal development and affects memory function throughout life. Choline deficiency during fetal development reduces proliferation and migration of neuronal precursor cells in the mouse fetal hippocampus and these changes are associated with modifications in the protein levels of some cell cycle regulators and early differentiation markers. We fed C57 BL/6 mouse dams diets deficient or normal in choline content from days 12 to 17 of pregnancy, and then collected fetal brains on embryonic day 17. Using laser-capture micro-dissection we harvested cells from the ventricular and subventricular zones of Ammon's horn and from the prime germinal zone of the dentate gyrus (hippocampus). In the ventricular and subventricular zones from the choline-deficient group, we observed increased protein levels for kinase-associated phosphatase (Kap) and for p15(INK4b) (two cell cycle inhibitors). In the dentate gyrus, we observed increased levels of calretinin (an early marker of neuronal differentiation). In fetal brain from mothers fed a choline-deficient diet, DNA global methylation was decreased in the ventricular and subventricular zones of Ammon's horn. We also observed decreased gene-specific DNA methylation of the gene (Cdkn3) that encodes for Kap, correlating with increased expression of this protein. This was not the case for p15(INK4b) or calretinin (Cdkn2b and Calb2, respectively). These data suggest that choline deficiency-induced changes in gene methylation could mediate the expression of a cell cycle regulator and thereby alter brain development. PMID:16394266

  11. 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.

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

    PubMed

    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

    2016-06-01

    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

  13. 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

  14. Affective Development in University Education

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Grootenboer, Peter

    2010-01-01

    There seems to be an increasing requirement for university courses and programs to develop students' affective qualities (beliefs, values, dispositions and attitudes). This study explored the ways academics determined what the desirable qualities were for their particular disciplines and the pedagogical strategies and approaches they used to…

  15. 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

  16. 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

  17. The extracellular calcium-sensing receptor regulates human fetal lung development via CFTR

    PubMed Central

    Brennan, Sarah C.; Wilkinson, William J.; Tseng, Hsiu-Er; Finney, Brenda; Monk, Bethan; Dibble, Holly; Quilliam, Samantha; Warburton, David; Galietta, Luis J.; Kemp, Paul J.; Riccardi, Daniela

    2016-01-01

    Optimal fetal lung growth requires anion-driven fluid secretion into the lumen of the developing organ. The fetus is hypercalcemic compared to the mother and here we show that in the developing human lung this hypercalcaemia acts on the extracellular calcium-sensing receptor, CaSR, to promote fluid-driven lung expansion through activation of the cystic fibrosis transmembrane conductance regulator, CFTR. Several chloride channels including TMEM16, bestrophin, CFTR, CLCN2 and CLCA1, are also expressed in the developing human fetal lung at gestational stages when CaSR expression is maximal. Measurements of Cl−-driven fluid secretion in organ explant cultures show that pharmacological CaSR activation by calcimimetics stimulates lung fluid secretion through CFTR, an effect which in humans, but not mice, was also mimicked by fetal hypercalcemic conditions, demonstrating that the physiological relevance of such a mechanism appears to be species-specific. Calcimimetics promote CFTR opening by activating adenylate cyclase and we show that Ca2+-stimulated type I adenylate cyclase is expressed in the developing human lung. Together, these observations suggest that physiological fetal hypercalcemia, acting on the CaSR, promotes human fetal lung development via cAMP-dependent opening of CFTR. Disturbances in this process would be expected to permanently impact lung structure and might predispose to certain postnatal respiratory diseases. PMID:26911344

  18. 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. PMID:19889710

  19. 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

  20. Effect of empty uterine space on birth intervals and fetal and placental development in pigs.

    PubMed

    Vallet, J L; Freking, B A; Miles, J R

    2011-05-01

    A substantial loss of embryos occurs between Days 30 and 40 of pregnancy in the pig under crowded intrauterine conditions, but it is not clear whether this loss affects the growth of adjacent conceptuses. Birth intervals are known to increase with decreasing litter size, but the factors responsible are unknown. Two possibilities are that increased birth weight associated with reduced litter size and the empty uterine space and resulting constricted uterine regions that occur in pigs with small litters may impair piglet delivery. To address these, pregnant gilts were laparotomized on Day 35 of pregnancy and one or two fetuses were manually crushed through the uterine wall on the ovarian or cervical end of each uterine horn to create an empty uterine space behind or in front of the litter of piglets, respectively, in relation to the route of delivery from the uterus. A subset of gilts was slaughtered at 105 days of gestation to confirm that the empty uterine spaces were successfully created and to determine their effects on placental and fetal weights of adjacent conceptuses. At slaughter, the lengths of all externally visible empty constricted regions of the uterus were measured. The uterine horns were opened and the lengths of each placenta were measured from the umbilicus toward the ovary and toward the cervix to assess whether placentas developed symmetrically, and then each fetus and placenta was weighed. Fetal crushing successfully created constricted empty uterine regions on the ovarian and cervical ends of the uterine horns. Ovarian-side placental lengths were greater than cervical-side for conceptuses adjacent to fetuses crushed on the ovarian end of the horn. Cervical-side placental lengths were greater than ovarian-side for conceptuses adjacent to fetuses crushed on the cervical end. Both placental and fetal weights were greater (10% and 6%, respectively, P<0.05) for conceptuses adjacent to crushed fetuses compared to nonadjacent conceptuses. Remaining

  1. 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. PMID:24612972

  2. Do the Levels of Maternal Plasma Trace Elements Affect Fetal Nuchal Translucency Thickness?

    PubMed Central

    Liao, Kai-Wei; Tsai, Ming-Song; Chang, Chia-Huang; Chien, Ling-Chu; Mao, I-Fang; Tsai, Yen-An; Chen, Mei-Lien

    2015-01-01

    Objective Fetal nuchal translucency (NT) thickness is an important marker for prenatal screening; however, studies focusing on the correlation between maternal trace element levels and NT thickness are limited. The aim of this study was to evaluate maternal trace element levels during the first trimester and to investigate the association between maternal trace element levels and fetal NT thickness. Methods In total, 113 samples were obtained from singleton pregnant women. Maternal plasma samples were collected in the first trimester of gestation. Plasma trace element levels were measured using Inductively Coupled Plasma Mass Spectrometry (ICP-MS). Nuchal translucency thickness was measured using ultrasonography at 10–14 weeks of gestation. Results We found that maternal plasma potassium (K) levels had a significant negative correlation with both NT (r = -0.230, p < 0.05) and NT Multiples of the Median (NT MoM) (r = -0.206, p < 0.05). After adjustment for potential confounders, log-transformed maternal plasma potassium levels in the first trimester were significantly associated with fetal NT (NT MoM: β = -0.68, p < 0.05; NT: β = -1.20, p < 0.01). Although not statistically significant, the As, Hg and Pb levels in maternal plasma were positively correlated with NT, and the Mg, Cu, Zn, Na and Ca levels were negatively correlated with NT. Conclusion Maternal plasma K levels during the first trimester appeared to be associated with NT thickness. The essential elements tended to decrease NT thickness, and non-essential elements tended to increase it. PMID:26367380

  3. 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…

  4. In utero exposure to environmentally relevant concentrations of PCB 153 and PCB 118 disrupts fetal testis development in sheep.

    PubMed

    Krogenæs, Anette K; Ropstad, Erik; Gutleb, Arno C; Hårdnes, Nina; Berg, Vidar; Dahl, Ellen; Fowler, Paul A

    2014-01-01

    Polychlorinated biphenyls (PCB) are environmental pollutants linked to adverse health effects including endocrine disruption and disturbance of reproductive development. This study aimed to determine whether exposure of pregnant sheep to three different mixtures of PCB 153 and PCB 118 affected fetal testis development. Ewes were treated by oral gavage from mating until euthanasia (d 134), producing three groups of fetuses with distinct adipose tissue PCB levels: high PCB 153/low PCB 118 (n = 13), high PCB 118/low PCB 153 (n = 14), and low PCB 153/low PCB 118 (n = 14). Fetal testes and blood samples were collected for investigation of testosterone, testis morphology, and testis proteome. The body weight of the offspring was lower in the high PCB compared to the low PCB group, but there were no significant differences in testis weight between groups when corrected for body weight. PCB exposure did not markedly affect circulating testosterone. There were no significant differences between groups in number of seminiferous tubules, Sertoli cell only tubules, and ratio between relative areas of seminiferous tubules and interstitium. Two-dimensional (2D) gel-based proteomics was used to screen for proteomic alterations in the high exposed groups relative to low PCB 153/low PCB 118 group. Twenty-six significantly altered spots were identified by liquid chromatography (LC)-mass spectroscopy (MS)/MS. Changes in protein regulation affected cellular processes as stress response, protein synthesis, and cytoskeleton regulation. The study demonstrates that in utero exposure to different environmental relevant PCB mixtures exerted subtle effects on developing fetal testis proteome but did not significantly disturb testis morphology and testosterone production. PMID:24754397

  5. 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.

  6. 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.

  7. Maternal obesity accelerates fetal pancreatic beta-cell but not alpha-cell development in sheep: prenatal consequences.

    PubMed

    Ford, Stephen P; Zhang, Liren; Zhu, Meijun; Miller, Myrna M; Smith, Derek T; Hess, Bret W; Moss, Gary E; Nathanielsz, Peter W; Nijland, Mark J

    2009-09-01

    Maternal obesity affects offspring weight, body composition, and organ function, increasing diabetes and metabolic syndrome risk. We determined effects of maternal obesity and a high-energy diet on fetal pancreatic development. Sixty days prior to breeding, ewes were assigned to control [100% of National Research Council (NRC) recommendations] or obesogenic (OB; 150% NRC) diets. At 75 days gestation, OB ewes exhibited elevated insulin-to-glucose ratios at rest and during a glucose tolerance test, demonstrating insulin resistance compared with control ewes. In fetal studies, ewes ate their respective diets from 60 days before to 75 days after conception when animals were euthanized under general anesthesia. OB and control ewes increased in body weight by approximately 43% and approximately 6%, respectively, from diet initiation until necropsy. Although all organs were heavier in fetuses from OB ewes, only pancreatic weight increased as a percentage of fetal weight. Blood glucose, insulin, and cortisol were elevated in OB ewes and fetuses on day 75. Insulin-positive cells per unit pancreatic area were 50% greater in fetuses from OB ewes as a result of increased beta-cell mitoses rather than decreased programmed cell death. Lambs of OB ewes were born earlier but weighed the same as control lambs; however, their crown-to-rump length was reduced, and their fat mass was increased. We conclude that increased systemic insulin in fetuses from OB ewes results from increased glucose exposure and/or cortisol-induced accelerated fetal beta-cell maturation and may contribute to premature beta-cell function loss and predisposition to obesity and metabolic disease in offspring. PMID:19605766

  8. 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...

  9. 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....

  10. FETAL DEVELOPMENT IN THE RAT FOLLOWING DISRUPTION OF MATERNAL RENAL FUNCTION DURING PREGNANCY

    EPA Science Inventory

    Pregnant Sprague Dawley rats were exposed on either gestation day 7, 9, 11 or 13 to mercuric chloride (1-4 mg/kg, subcutaneously) in order to evaluate maternal renal pathophysiology as a risk factor for abnormal embryonic and fetal development. ollowing exposure, the magnitude an...

  11. EFFECT OF ACUTE MATERNAL TOXICITY ON FETAL DEVELOPMENT IN THE MOUSE

    EPA Science Inventory

    The effects of acute alterations in maternal health status upon fetal development were assessed following exposure of pregnant CD-1 mice on day 8 of gestation to one of ten chemicals at a dose calculated to be the maternal LD10 or LD40. The dams were killed on day 18 of gestation...

  12. 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...

  13. Magnesium and fetal growth

    SciTech Connect

    Weaver, K.

    1988-01-01

    Fetal growth retardation and premature labor are major problems in perinatal medicine today and account for a great deal of the observed fetal morbidity. While the neonatal death rate has steadily declined over the past decade, there has been a lack of concommitant decrease in these two leading problems. Magnesium (Mg/sup ++/) plays a major role in both of these areas of concern. The fact that it is used as a treatment for premature labor has led investigators to look at low Mg/sup ++/ as a possible cause of this poorly understood phenomenon. The second major cause of small for gestational age infants is intrauterine growth retardation, a condition which may be of either fetal or maternal origin. In either case, Mg/sup ++/ may be implicated since it exerts a strong influence on the underlying pathophysiology of placental failure and maternal hypertension. Both of these conditions are mediated by vascular and platelet hyperactivity as well as by and increase in the ration of thromboxane to prostacyclin. Studies in both the human and animal species are beginning to show how Mg/sup ++/ interacts in these conditions to produce such a damaging fetal outcome. The recent use of Doppler velocimetry of the developing fetus has shown reduced fetal vascular and maternal uterine vascular compliance as early as 14 weeks of gestation in those who would be so affected.

  14. Emergence and retention of learning in early fetal development.

    PubMed

    Krueger, Charlene; Garvan, Cynthia

    2014-05-01

    Prior research has demonstrated that the late-term fetus is capable of learning and then remembering a passage of speech for several days, but there are no data to describe the earliest emergence of learning a passage of speech, and thus, how long that learning could be remembered before birth. This study investigated these questions. Pregnant women began reciting or speaking a passage out loud (either Rhyme A or Rhyme B) when their fetuses were 28 weeks gestational age (GA) and continued to do so until their fetuses reached 34 weeks of age, at which time the recitations stopped. Fetuses' learning and memory of their rhyme were assessed at 28, 32, 33, 34, 36 and 38 weeks. The criterion for learning and memory was the occurrence of a stimulus-elicited heart rate deceleration following onset of a recording of the passage spoken by a female stranger. Detection of a sustained heart rate deceleration began to emerge by 34 weeks GA and was statistically evident at 38 weeks GA. Thus, fetuses begin to show evidence of learning by 34 weeks GA and, without any further exposure to it, are capable of remembering until just prior to birth. Further study using dose-response curves is needed in order to more fully understand how ongoing experience, in the context of ongoing development in the last trimester of pregnancy, affects learning and memory. PMID:24548971

  15. 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. PMID:25827961

  16. 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

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-12-01

    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

  18. Flt3 Ligand Regulates the Development of Innate Lymphoid Cells in Fetal and Adult Mice.

    PubMed

    Baerenwaldt, Anne; von Burg, Nicole; Kreuzaler, Matthias; Sitte, Selina; Horvath, Edit; Peter, Annick; Voehringer, David; Rolink, Antonius G; Finke, Daniela

    2016-03-15

    Flt3 ligand (Flt3L) promotes survival of lymphoid progenitors in the bone marrow and differentiation of dendritic cells (DCs), but its role in regulating innate lymphoid cells (ILCs) during fetal and adult life is not understood. By using Flt3L knockout and transgenic mice, we demonstrate that Flt3L controls ILC numbers by regulating the pool of α4β7(-) and α4β7(+) lymphoid tissue inducer cell progenitors in the fetal liver and common lymphoid progenitors in the bone marrow. Deletion of flt3l severely reduced the number of fetal liver progenitors and lymphoid tissue inducer cells in the neonatal intestine, resulting in impaired development of Peyer's patches. In the adult intestine, NK cells and group 2 and 3 ILCs were severely reduced. This effect occurred independently of DCs as ILC numbers were normal in mice in which DCs were constitutively deleted. Finally, we could show that administration of Flt3L increased the number of NKp46(-) group 3 ILCs in wild-type and even in Il7(-/-) mice, which generally have reduced numbers of ILCs. Taken together, Flt3L significantly contributes to ILC and Peyer's patches development by targeting lymphoid progenitor cells during fetal and adult life. PMID:26851220

  19. 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

  20. 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

  1. 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

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

    PubMed

    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

  3. Intact fetal ovarian cord formation promotes mouse oocyte survival and development

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Background Female reproductive potential, or the ability to propagate life, is limited in mammals with the majority of oocytes lost before birth. In mice, surviving perinatal oocytes are enclosed in ovarian follicles for subsequent oocyte development and function in the adult. Before birth, fetal germ cells of both sexes develop in clusters, or germline cysts, in the undifferentiated gonad. Upon sex determination of the fetal gonad, germ cell cysts become organized into testicular or ovarian cord-like structures and begin to interact with gonadal somatic cells. Although germline cysts and testicular cords are required for spermatogenesis, the role of cyst and ovarian cord formation in mammalian oocyte development and female fertility has not been determined. Results Here, we examine whether intact fetal ovarian germ and somatic cell cord structures are required for oocyte development using mouse gonad re-aggregation and transplantation to disrupt gonadal organization. We observed that germ cells from disrupted female gonad prior to embryonic day e13.5 completed prophase I of meiosis but did not survive following transplantation. Furthermore, re-aggregated ovaries from e13.5 to e15.5 developed with a reduced number of oocytes. Oocyte loss occurred before follicle formation and was associated with an absence of ovarian cord structure and ovary disorganization. However, disrupted ovaries from e16.5 or later were resistant to the re-aggregation impairment and supported robust oocyte survival and development in follicles. Conclusions Thus, we demonstrate a critical window of oocyte development from e13.5 to e16.5 in the intact fetal mouse ovary, corresponding to the establishment of ovarian cord structure, which promotes oocyte interaction with neighboring ovarian somatic granulosa cells before birth and imparts oocytes with competence to survive and develop in follicles. Because germline cyst and ovarian cord structures are conserved in the human fetal ovary, the

  4. 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. PMID:26199280

  5. 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. PMID:25565833

  6. 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

  7. Quantitative and Qualitative Analysis of Transient Fetal Compartments during Prenatal Human Brain Development

    PubMed Central

    Vasung, Lana; Lepage, Claude; Radoš, Milan; Pletikos, Mihovil; Goldman, Jennifer S.; Richiardi, Jonas; Raguž, Marina; Fischi-Gómez, Elda; Karama, Sherif; Huppi, Petra S.; Evans, Alan C.; Kostovic, Ivica

    2016-01-01

    The cerebral wall of the human fetal brain is composed of transient cellular compartments, which show characteristic spatiotemporal relationships with intensity of major neurogenic events (cell proliferation, migration, axonal growth, dendritic differentiation, synaptogenesis, cell death, and myelination). The aim of the present study was to obtain new quantitative data describing volume, surface area, and thickness of transient compartments in the human fetal cerebrum. Forty-four postmortem fetal brains aged 13–40 postconceptional weeks (PCW) were included in this study. High-resolution T1 weighted MR images were acquired on 19 fetal brain hemispheres. MR images were processed using in-house software (MNI-ACE toolbox). Delineation of fetal compartments was performed semi-automatically by co-registration of MRI with histological sections of the same brains, or with the age-matched brains from Zagreb Neuroembryological Collection. Growth trajectories of transient fetal compartments were reconstructed. The composition of telencephalic wall was quantitatively assessed. Between 13 and 25 PCW, when the intensity of neuronal proliferation decreases drastically, the relative volume of proliferative (ventricular and subventricular) compartments showed pronounced decline. In contrast, synapse- and extracellular matrix-rich subplate compartment continued to grow during the first two trimesters, occupying up to 45% of telencephalon and reaching its maximum volume and thickness around 30 PCW. This developmental maximum coincides with a period of intensive growth of long cortico-cortical fibers, which enter and wait in subplate before approaching the cortical plate. Although we did not find significant age related changes in mean thickness of the cortical plate, the volume, gyrification index, and surface area of the cortical plate continued to exponentially grow during the last phases of prenatal development. This cortical expansion coincides developmentally with the

  8. Quantitative and Qualitative Analysis of Transient Fetal Compartments during Prenatal Human Brain Development.

    PubMed

    Vasung, Lana; Lepage, Claude; Radoš, Milan; Pletikos, Mihovil; Goldman, Jennifer S; Richiardi, Jonas; Raguž, Marina; Fischi-Gómez, Elda; Karama, Sherif; Huppi, Petra S; Evans, Alan C; Kostovic, Ivica

    2016-01-01

    The cerebral wall of the human fetal brain is composed of transient cellular compartments, which show characteristic spatiotemporal relationships with intensity of major neurogenic events (cell proliferation, migration, axonal growth, dendritic differentiation, synaptogenesis, cell death, and myelination). The aim of the present study was to obtain new quantitative data describing volume, surface area, and thickness of transient compartments in the human fetal cerebrum. Forty-four postmortem fetal brains aged 13-40 postconceptional weeks (PCW) were included in this study. High-resolution T1 weighted MR images were acquired on 19 fetal brain hemispheres. MR images were processed using in-house software (MNI-ACE toolbox). Delineation of fetal compartments was performed semi-automatically by co-registration of MRI with histological sections of the same brains, or with the age-matched brains from Zagreb Neuroembryological Collection. Growth trajectories of transient fetal compartments were reconstructed. The composition of telencephalic wall was quantitatively assessed. Between 13 and 25 PCW, when the intensity of neuronal proliferation decreases drastically, the relative volume of proliferative (ventricular and subventricular) compartments showed pronounced decline. In contrast, synapse- and extracellular matrix-rich subplate compartment continued to grow during the first two trimesters, occupying up to 45% of telencephalon and reaching its maximum volume and thickness around 30 PCW. This developmental maximum coincides with a period of intensive growth of long cortico-cortical fibers, which enter and wait in subplate before approaching the cortical plate. Although we did not find significant age related changes in mean thickness of the cortical plate, the volume, gyrification index, and surface area of the cortical plate continued to exponentially grow during the last phases of prenatal development. This cortical expansion coincides developmentally with the

  9. 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. PMID:25753408

  10. 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

  11. Timely and spatially regulated maturation of B and T cell repertoire during human fetal development.

    PubMed

    Rechavi, Erez; Lev, Atar; Lee, Yu Nee; Simon, Amos J; Yinon, Yoav; Lipitz, Schlomo; Amariglio, Ninette; Weisz, Boaz; Notarangelo, Luigi D; Somech, Raz

    2015-02-25

    Insights into the ontogeny of the human fetal adaptive immune system are of great value for understanding immunocompetence of the developing fetus. However, to date, this has remained largely uncharted territory, in large part because blood samples from healthy, early gestation fetuses have been hard to come by. In a comprehensive study, we analyzed levels of T cell receptor excision circles (TRECs), signal-joint κ receptor excision circles (sjKRECs), and intron recombination signal sequence-K-deleting element (iRSS-Kde) rearrangement, and T and B lymphocyte repertoire clonality in human fetuses from 12 to 26 weeks of gestational age. Using next-generation sequencing, we analyzed the diversity and complexity of T cell receptor β (TRB) and immunoglobulin heavy chain (IGH) repertoires in four fetuses at 12, 13, 22, and 26 weeks of gestation and in healthy full-term infants. We report the progressive increase of TREC, sjKREC, and iRSS-Kde levels over time and confirm that B cell development precedes T cell development in the human fetus. Temporally and spatially regulated maturation of B and T cell repertoire diversity and complexity during human fetal development was observed, including evidence that immunoglobulin somatic hypermutation and class switch recombination occur already during intrauterine life. Our results help define physiological levels of immunodeficiency in premature infants and may serve as a reference for future studies aimed at investigating the impact of intrauterine pathologies on fetal immune development and function. PMID:25717098

  12. Some effects of feeding Tribulus terrestris, Ipomoea lonchophylla and the seed of Abelmoschus ficulneus on fetal development and the outcome of pregnancy in sheep.

    PubMed

    Walker, D; Bird, A; Flora, T; O'Sullivan, B

    1992-01-01

    Pregnant ewes and their fetuses were chronically catheterized using aseptic procedures under general anaesthesia, and the ewes were then fed either lucerne chaff alone, or lucerne mixed with dried plant material obtained from one of three forb species, Tribulus terrestris (caltrop), Abelmoschus ficulneus (native rosella) or Ipomoea lonchophylla (cowvine), from 103-112 days gestation until term. Ingestion of the forb material was not associated with changes in maternal blood gases, plasma glucose concentrations, or the length of gestation. However, ingestion of rosella seed was associated with a significantly greater fall of fetal arterial pO2 with advancing gestation, and ingestion of either rosella or cowvine was associated with significantly lower fetal mean arterial pressure at 127-131 days, compared with the Tribulus and lucerne groups. Also, the incidence of fetal breathing movements was significantly lower, and did not show a normal day-night variation, in each of the forb-fed groups compared with the lucerne-fed group. The results indicate that these forb plants may contain substances that affect the functional development of the fetal brain. Although ingestion of these plants did not appear to affect the outcome of pregnancy in this study, the possibility that these forbs have a greater impact in sheep populations with poor nutrition and in more extreme environmental conditions is discussed. PMID:1438942

  13. Chronic exposure to simulated space conditions predominantly affects cytoskeleton remodeling and oxidative stress response in mouse fetal fibroblasts.

    PubMed

    Beck, Michaël; Moreels, Marjan; Quintens, Roel; Abou-El-Ardat, Khalil; El-Saghire, Hussein; Tabury, Kevin; Michaux, Arlette; Janssen, Ann; Neefs, Mieke; Van Oostveldt, Patrick; De Vos, Winnok H; Baatout, Sarah

    2014-08-01

    Microgravity and cosmic rays as found in space are difficult to recreate on earth. However, ground-based models exist to simulate space flight experiments. In the present study, an experimental model was utilized to monitor gene expression changes in fetal skin fibroblasts of murine origin. Cells were continuously subjected for 65 h to a low dose (55 mSv) of ionizing radiation (IR), comprising a mixture of high‑linear energy transfer (LET) neutrons and low-LET gamma-rays, and/or simulated microgravity using the random positioning machine (RPM), after which microarrays were performed. The data were analyzed both by gene set enrichment analysis (GSEA) and single gene analysis (SGA). Simulated microgravity affected fetal murine fibroblasts by inducing oxidative stress responsive genes. Three of these genes are targets of the nuclear factor‑erythroid 2 p45-related factor 2 (Nrf2), which may play a role in the cell response to simulated microgravity. In addition, simulated gravity decreased the expression of genes involved in cytoskeleton remodeling, which may have been caused by the downregulation of the serum response factor (SRF), possibly through the Rho signaling pathway. Similarly, chronic exposure to low-dose IR caused the downregulation of genes involved in cytoskeleton remodeling, as well as in cell cycle regulation and DNA damage response pathways. Many of the genes or gene sets that were altered in the individual treatments (RPM or IR) were not altered in the combined treatment (RPM and IR), indicating a complex interaction between RPM and IR. PMID:24859186

  14. Neonatal and fetal exposure to trans-fatty acid retards early growth and adiposity while adversely affecting glucose in mice

    PubMed Central

    Kavanagh, Kylie; Sajadian, Soraya; Jenkins, Kurt A.; Wilson, Martha D.; Carr, J. Jeffery; Wagner, Janice D.; Rudel, Lawrence L.

    2010-01-01

    Industrially produced trans fatty acids (TFAs) consumed in western diets are incorporated into maternal and fetal tissues, and are passed linearly to offspring via breast milk. We hypothesized that TFA exposure in utero and during lactation in infants would promote obesity and poor glycemic control as compared to unmodified fatty acids. We further hypothesized that in utero exposure alone may program for these outcomes in adulthood. To test this hypothesis we fed female C57/BL6 mice identical western diets that differed only in cis- or trans-isomers of C18:1 and then aimed to determine whether maternal transfer of TFAs through pregnancy and lactation alters growth, body composition and glucose metabolism. Mice were unexposed, exposed during pregnancy, during lactation, or throughout pregnancy and lactation to TFA. Body weight and composition (by computed tomography), and glucose metabolism we assessed at weaning and adulthood. TFA exposure through breast milk caused significant early growth retardation (p<0.001) and higher fasting glucose (p=0.01) but insulin sensitivity was not different. Elevated plasma insulin-like growth factor-1 in mice consuming TFA-enriched milk (p=0.02) may contribute to later catch-up growth, leanness and preserved peripheral insulin sensitivity observed in these mice. Mice exposed to TFA in utero underwent rapid early neonatal growth with TFA-free breast milk and had significantly impaired insulin sensitivity (p<0.05) and greater abdominal fat (p=0.01). We conclude that very early catch-up growth resulted in impaired peripheral insulin sensitivity in this model of diet-related fetal and neonatal programming. TFA surprisingly retarded growth and adiposity while still adversely affecting glucose metabolism. PMID:20650350

  15. 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.

  16. [The fetal proteins in prognosis of development of pneumonia in patients with ischemic stroke].

    PubMed

    Arkhipkin, A A; Liang, O V; Kochetov, A G

    2014-12-01

    The searching of laboratory predictors of pneumonia in patients with ischemic stroke is an actual issue. The fetal proteins can be such biomarkers. The study was carried out to determine significance of such fetal proteins as alpha-fetoprotein, cancerous embryonic antigen, CA 19-9, CA 125, CA 15-3, CA 72-4, CYFRA 21-1 for prognosis of development of pneumonia in patients with ischemic stroke. The study included sampling of 216 patients in acute period of ischemic stroke. All patients were measured level of fetal proteins in first day from onset of disease using electrochemiluminescence immunoassay. It is demonstrated that CA 72-4 has the most significance for prognosis of development of pneumonia from all analyzed proteins and complications of ischemic stroke. The probability ratio relatively to other fetal proteins added up to 0.460 (CL 95% 0.267-0.791, p=0.011), to other complications--0.629 (CL 95% 0.433-0.913, p=0.015). The threshold value of CA 72-4 for development of pneumonia added up to 0.82 (CL 95% 0.68-0.96, p=0.011) U/ml. Under lower level of CA 72-4 the risk of development of pneumonia increases. Under higher level of CA 72-4 there is statistical probability of absence of developmnent of pneumonia. The threshold value was lower than reference interval which in the study added up to 0.85-1.42 U/ml. The detection of level of CA 72-4 on first day after onset of stroke in patients can be recommended for establishing of group of high risk of development of pneumonia and implementation of therapeutic activities. PMID:25872261

  17. Maternal and Fetal Anti-brain Antibodies in Development and Disease

    PubMed Central

    Fox, Elizabeth; Amaral, David; Van de Water, Judy

    2012-01-01

    Recent evidence has emerged indicating that the maternal immune response can have a substantial deleterious impact on prenatal development (Croen et al., 2008). The maternal immune response is largely sequestered from the fetus. Maternal antibodies, specifically immunoglobulin G (IgG), are passed to the fetus to provide passive immunity throughout much of pregnancy. However, both protective and pathogenic autoantibodies have equal access to the fetus (Goines and Van de Water, 2010). If the mother has an underlying autoimmune disease or has reactivity to fetal antigens, autoantibodies produced before or during pregnancy can target tissues in the developing fetus. One such tissue is the fetal brain. The blood brain barrier (BBB) is developing during the fetal period allowing maternal antibodies to have direct access to the brain during gestation (Diamond et al., 2009; Braunschweig et al., 2011). It has been proposed that brain injury by circulating brain–specific maternal autoantibodies might underlie multiple congenital, developmental disorders (Lee et al., 2009). In this review, we will discuss the current state of research in the area of maternal autoantibodies and the development of autism. PMID:22911883

  18. Gestational nanomaterial exposures: microvascular implications during pregnancy, fetal development and adulthood.

    PubMed

    Stapleton, P A

    2016-04-15

    Air pollution particulate matter and engineered nanomaterials are encompassed in the broad definition of xenobiotic particles. While the effects of perinatal air pollution exposure have been investigated, elucidation of outcomes associated with nanomaterial exposure, the focus of this review, is still in its infancy. As the potential uses of nanomaterials, and therefore exposures, increase exponentially so does the need for thorough evaluation. Up to this point, the majority of research in the field of cardiovascular nanotoxicology has focused on the coronary and vascular reactions to pulmonary exposures in young adult, healthy, male models; however, as intentional and unintentional contacts persist, the non-pulmonary risks to under-represented populations become a critical concern. Development of the maternal-fetal circulation during successful mammalian gestation is one of the most unusual complex, dynamic, and acutely demanding physiological systems. Fetal development in a hostile gestational environment can lead to systemic alterations, which may encourage adult disease. Therefore, the purpose of this review is to highlight the few knowns associated with gestational engineered nanomaterial exposure segmented by physiological periods of development or systemic targets: preconception and maternal, gestational, fetal and progeny (Abstract figure). Overall, the limited studies currently available provide compelling evidence of maternal, fetal and offspring dysfunctions after engineered nanomaterial exposure. Understanding the mechanisms associated with these multigenerational effects may allow pregnant women to safely reap the benefits of nanotechnology-enabled products and assist in the implementation of exposure controls to protect the mother and fetus allowing for development of safety by design for engineered nanomaterials. PMID:26332609

  19. 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

  20. Comparative Effects of Di(n-Butyl) Phthalate Exposure on Fetal Germ Cell Development in the Rat and in Human Fetal Testis Xenografts

    PubMed Central

    McKinnell, Chris; Calarrão, Ana; Kennedy, Laura; Hutchison, Gary R.; Hrabalkova, Lenka; Jobling, Matthew S.; Macpherson, Sheila; Anderson, Richard A.; Sharpe, Richard M.; Mitchell, Rod T.

    2014-01-01

    , Sharpe RM, Mitchell RT. 2015. Comparative effects of di(n-butyl) phthalate exposure on fetal germ cell development in the rat and in human fetal testis xenografts. Environ Health Perspect 123:223–230; http://dx.doi.org/10.1289/ehp.1408248 PMID:25514601

  1. 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

  2. Pregnancy distress gets under fetal skin: Maternal ambulatory assessment & sex differences in prenatal development.

    PubMed

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

    2015-07-01

    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

  3. Fetal adrenal development: comparing effects of combined exposures to PCB 118 and PCB 153 in a sheep model.

    PubMed

    Zimmer, Karin E; Kraugerud, Marianne; Aleksandersen, Mona; Gutleb, Arno C; Østby, Gunn C; Dahl, Ellen; Berg, Vidar; Skaare, Janneche U; Olsaker, Ingrid; Ropstad, Erik

    2013-03-01

    This study investigated the effects of exposure to the ubiquitous contaminants polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) on the fetal adrenal cortex and on plasma cortisol using the domestic sheep (Ovis aries) as a model. Pregnant ewes were intendedly subjected to oral treatment with PCB 153 (98 μg/kg bw/day), PCB 118 (49 μg/kg bw/day) or the vehicle corn oil from mating until euthanasia on gestation day 134 (±0.25 SE). However, because of accidental cross-contamination occurring twice causing a mixed exposure scenario in all three groups, the focus of this paper is to compare three distinct groups of fetuses with different adipose tissue PCB levels (PCB 153high, PCB 118high and low, combined groups) rather than comparing animals exposed to single PCB congeners to those of a control group. When comparing endocrine and anatomical parameters from fetuses in the PCB 153high (n = 13) or PCB 118high (n = 14) groups with the low, combined group (n = 14), there was a significant decrease in fetal body weight (P < 0.05), plasma cortisol concentration (P < 0.001) and adrenal cortex thickness (P < 0.001). Furthermore, adrenal weight was decreased and plasma ACTH was increased only in the PCB 118high group. Expression of several genes encoding enzymes and receptors related to steroid hormone synthesis was also affected and mostly down-regulated in fetuses with high PCB tissue levels. In conclusion, we suggest that mono-and di-ortho PCBs were able to interfere with growth, adrenal development and cortisol production in the fetal sheep model. © 2011 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. Environ Toxicol, 2013. PMID:21544918

  4. 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.

  5. Impact of maternal physical activity on fetal breathing and body movement--A review.

    PubMed

    Sussman, Dafna; Lye, Stephen J; Wells, Greg D

    2016-03-01

    Fetal movements, which include body and breathing movement, are important indicators of fetal well-being and nervous system development. These have been shown to be affected by intrauterine conditions. While maternal physical activity does induce a change in intrauterine conditions and physiology, its impact on fetal movements is still unclear. This paper will provide a brief review of the literature and outline the current knowledge with regards to the effects of maternal exercise on fetal body and breathing movements. PMID:26811196

  6. Prenatal exposure to the contaminant perfluorooctane sulfonate elevates lipid peroxidation during mouse fetal development but not in the pregnant dam.

    PubMed

    Lee, Y Y; Wong, C K C; Oger, C; Durand, T; Galano, J-M; Lee, J C-Y

    2015-01-01

    Perfluorooctane sulfonate (PFOS), a member of the perfluorinated chemical family, has been convincingly demonstrated to affect lipid metabolism in animals and humans and readily crosses the placenta to exert its effects on the developing fetuses. While its exact mechanism is still not clear, PFOS exposure has long been suggested to exert its toxicity via oxidative stress and/or altered gene expression. Levels of PFOS and malondialdehyde in various organs and cell cultures have been widely determined as general indicators of non-specific lipid peroxidation after PFOS exposure. In this study, the oxidation of precise polyunsaturated fatty acids and their metabolites, derived from enzymatic and non-enzymatic pathways was determined following PFOS exposure in both adult and maternal/fetal mice. CD-1 mice were exposed to 3 mg/kg body weight/day of PFOS in corn oil by oral gavage until late gestation (GD17). We demonstrated that lipid peroxidation was particularly and exclusively affected in fetuses exposed to PFOS, but this was not the case in the maternal mice, where limited effects were observed in the enzymatic oxidation pathway. In this study, we demonstrated that PFOS-induced lipid peroxidation might have a greater impact in free radical generation in fetuses than in dams and could be responsible for affecting fetal development. In addition, antioxidant enzymes, such as superoxide dismutase and catalase, appeared to maintain oxidative stress homeostasis partially in adult mice exposed to PFOS. Taken together, our results might elucidate the mechanism of how PFOS induces oxidative stress in vivo. PMID:25787935

  7. 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…

  8. Study of a fetal brain affected by a severe form of tyrosine hydroxylase deficiency, a rare cause of early parkinsonism.

    PubMed

    Tristán-Noguero, Alba; Díez, Héctor; Jou, Cristina; Pineda, Mercè; Ormazábal, Aida; Sánchez, Aurora; Artuch, Rafael; Garcia-Cazorla, Àngels

    2016-06-01

    Tyrosine hydroxylase (TH) deficiency is an inborn error of dopamine synthesis. Two clinical phenotypes have been described. The THD "B" phenotype produces a severe encephalopathy of early-onset with sub-optimal L-Dopa response, whereas the "A" phenotype has a better L-Dopa response and outcome. The objective of the study is to describe the expression of key synaptic proteins and neurodevelopmental markers in a fetal brain of THD "B" phenotype. The brain of a 16-week-old miscarried human fetus was dissected in different brain areas and frozen until the analysis. TH gene study revealed the p.R328W/p.T399M mutations, the same mutations that produced a B phenotype in her sister. After protein extraction, western blot analyses were performed to assess protein expression. The results were compared to an age-matched control. We observed a decreased expression in TH and in other dopaminergic proteins, such as VMAT 1 and 2 and dopamine receptors, especially D2DR. GABAergic and glutamatergic proteins such as GABA VT, NMDAR1 and calbindin were also altered. Developmental markers for synapses, axons and dendrites were decreased whereas markers of neuronal volume were preserved. Although this is an isolated case, this brain sample is unique and corresponds to the first reported study of a THD brain. It provides interesting information about the influence of dopamine as a regulator of other neurotransmitter systems, brain development and movement disorders with origin at the embryological state. This study could also contribute to a better understanding of the pathophysiology of THD at early fetal stages. PMID:26686676

  9. 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. PMID:26619782

  10. A patient with Huntington's disease and long-surviving fetal neural transplants that developed mass lesions

    PubMed Central

    Keene, C. Dirk; Chang, Rubens C.; Leverenz, James B.; Kopyov, Oleg; Perlman, Susan; Hevner, Robert F.; Born, Donald E.; Bird, Thomas D.; Montine, Thomas J.

    2009-01-01

    Transplantation of human fetal neural tissue into adult neostriatum is an experimental therapy for Huntington's disease (HD). Here we describe a patient with HD who received ten intrastriatal human fetal neural transplants and, at one site, an autologous sural nerve co-graft. Although initially clinically stable, she developed worsening asymmetric upper motor neuron symptoms in addition to progression of Huntington's disease, and ultimately died 121 months post transplantation. Eight neural transplants, up to 2.9 cm, and three ependymal cysts, up to 2.0 cm, were identified. The autologous sural nerve co-graft was found adjacent to the largest mass lesion, which, along with the ependymal cyst, exhibited pronounced mass effect on the internal capsules bilaterally. Grafts were composed of neurons and glia embedded in disorganized neuropil; robust Y chromosome labeling was present in a subset of grafts and cysts. The graft-host border was discrete, and there was no evidence of graft rejection or HD pathologic changes within donor neurons. This report, for the first time, highlights the potential for graft overgrowth in a patient receiving fetal neural transplantation. PMID:19057918

  11. 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.

  12. 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.

  13. 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

  14. 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…

  15. 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. PMID:26118444

  16. 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. PMID:19900988

  17. Development of Eimeria nieschulzi (Coccidia, Apicomplexa) Gamonts and Oocysts in Primary Fetal Rat Cells.

    PubMed

    Chen, Hong; Wiedmer, Stefanie; Hanig, Sacha; Entzeroth, Rolf; Kurth, Michael

    2013-01-01

    The in vitro production of gametocytes and oocysts of the apicomplexan parasite genus Eimeria is still a challenge in coccidiosis research. Until today, an in vitro development of gametocytes or oocysts had only been shown in some Eimeria species. For several mammalian Eimeria species, partial developments could be achieved in different cell types, but a development up to gametocytes or oocysts is still lacking. This study compares several permanent cell lines with primary fetal cells of the black rat (Rattus norvegicus) concerning the qualitative in vitro development of the rat parasite Eimeria nieschulzi. With the help of transgenic parasites, the developmental progress was documented. The selected Eimeria nieschulzi strain constitutively expresses the yellow fluorescent protein and a macrogamont specific upregulated red tandem dimer tomato. In the majority of all investigated host cells the development stopped at the second merozoite stage. In a mixed culture of cells derived from inner fetal organs the development of schizont generations I-IV, macrogamonts, and oocysts were observed in crypt-like organoid structures. Microgamonts and microgametes could not be observed and oocysts did not sporulate under air supply. By immunohistology, we could confirm that wild-type E. nieschulzi stages can be found in the crypts of the small intestine. The results of this study may be helpful for characterization of native host cells and for development of an in vitro cultivation system for Eimeria species. PMID:23862053

  18. Incubation temperature manipulation during fetal development reduces adiposity of broiler hatchlings.

    PubMed

    Almeida, V R; Morita, V S; Sgavioli, S; Vicentini, T I; Castiblanco, D M C; Boleli, I C

    2016-02-01

    fetal development altered cervical and abdominal adipocyte size in broiler hatchlings and could become a tool in hatcheries to manipulate chick quality, although further studies are needed to evaluate its long-term effects. PMID:26527708

  19. 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. PMID:25763636

  20. Genetic ablation of androgen receptor signaling in fetal Leydig cell lineage affects Leydig cell functions in adult testis.

    PubMed

    Kaftanovskaya, Elena M; Lopez, Carolina; Ferguson, Lydia; Myhr, Courtney; Agoulnik, Alexander I

    2015-06-01

    It is commonly accepted that androgen-producing fetal Leydig cells (FLC) are substituted by adult Leydig cells (ALC) during perinatal testis development. The mechanisms influencing this process are unclear. We used mice with a retinoid acid receptor 2 promoter-Cre recombinase transgene (Rarb-cre) expressed in embryonic FLC precursors, but not in postnatal testis, and a dual fluorescent Cre recombinase reporter to label FLC and ALC in vivo. All FLC in newborn testis had the recombinant, whereas the majority of LC in adult testis had the nonrecombinant reporter. Primary LC cultures from adult testis had either recombinant (20%) or nonrecombinant (80%) cells, demonstrating that the FLC survive in adult testis and their ontogeny is distinct from ALC. Conditional inactivation of androgen receptor (AR) allele using the Rarb-cre transgene resulted in a 50% increase of AR-negative LC in adult testis. The mutant males became infertile with age, with all LC in older testis showing signs of incomplete differentiation, such as a large number of big lipid droplets, an increase of finger-like protrusions, and a misexpression of steroidogenic or FLC- and ALC-specific genes. We propose that the antiandrogenic exposure during early development may similarly result in an increase of FLC in adult testis, leading to abnormal LC differentiation. PMID:25713029

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2012-01-01

    The origin of embryos including those created through assisted reproductive technologies (ART) may 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 immunodetect Ki67 (a marker of proliferating cells) and 5-methyl cytosine (5mC) followed by image analysis, and determination of mRNA expression for three DNA methyltransferases (DNMT). Fetal length and labeling index (proportion of proliferating cells) in maternal caruncles (CAR; maternal placenta) and fetal membranes (FM; fetal placenta) were less (P < 0.001) in NAT-ET, IVF and IVA than in NAT. Expression of 5mC was greater (P < 0.02) in IVF and IVA than in NAT. In CAR, mRNA expression for DNMT1 was greater (P < 0.01) in IVA compared to the other groups, but DNMT3A expression was less (P < 0.04) in NAT-ET and IVA than NAT. In FM, expression of mRNA for DNMT3A was greater (P < 0.01) in IVA compared to the other groups, and was similar in NAT, NAT-ET and IVF groups. Thus, embryo origin may have specific effects on growth and function of ovine utero-placental 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 ART. PMID:23117132

  2. 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. PMID:8848601

  3. Stimulatory Effects of Coumestrol on Embryonic and Fetal Development Through AKT and ERK1/2 MAPK Signal Transduction.

    PubMed

    Lim, Whasun; Song, Gwonhwa

    2016-12-01

    Successful establishment of pregnancy is required for fetal-maternal interactions regulating implantation, embryonic development and placentation. A uterine environment with insufficient growth factors and nutrients increases the incidence of intrauterine growth restriction (IUGR) leading to an impaired uterine environment. In the present study, we demonstrated the effects of the phytoestrogen coumestrol on conceptus development in the pig that is regarded as an excellent biomedical animal model for research on IUGR. Results of this study indicated that coumestrol induced migration of porcine trophectoderm (pTr) cells in a concentration-dependent manner. In response to coumestrol, the phosphorylation of AKT, P70S6K, S6, ERK1/2 MAPK, and P90RSK proteins were activated in pTr cells and ERK1/2 MAPK and P90RSK phosphorylation was prolonged for a longer period than for the other proteins. To identify the signal transduction pathway induced by coumestrol, pharmacological inhibitors U0126 (an ERK1/2 inhibitor) and LY294002 (a PI3K inhibitor) were used to pretreat pTr cells. The results showed that coumestrol-induced phosphorylation of ERK1/2 MAPK and P90RSK was blocked by U0126. In addition, the increased phosphorylation in response to coumestrol was completely inhibited following pre-treatment incubation of pTr cells in the presence of LY294002 and U0126. Furthermore, these two inhibitors suppressed the ability of coumestrol to induce migration of pTr cells. Collectively, these findings suggest that coumestrol affects embryonic development through activation of the PI3K/AKT and ERK1/2 MAPK cell signal transduction pathways and improvement in the uterine environment through coumestrol supplementation may provide beneficial effects of enhancing embryonic and fetal survival and development. J. Cell. Physiol. 231: 2733-2740, 2016. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. PMID:26991852

  4. 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

  5. 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

  6. 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…

  7. 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

  8. DNA repair and induction of plasminogen activator in human fetal cells treated with ultraviolet light. [Development associated changes

    SciTech Connect

    Ben-Ishai, R.; Sharon, R.; Rothman, M.; Miskin, R. . Dept. of Biochemistry)

    1984-03-01

    Human fetal fibroblasts have been tested for development associated changes in DNA repair by utilizing nucleoid sedimentation as an assay for excision repair. Among skin fibroblasts the rate of excision repair was significantly higher in non-fetal cells than in fibroblasts derived from an 8 week fetus. Skin fibroblasts derived at 12 week gestation were more repair proficient than at 8 weeks. However, they exhibited a lower rate of repair than non-fetal cells. Enhancement of protease plasminogen activator (PA) was higher after u.v. irradiation in skin fibroblasts derived at 8 weeks than at 12 weeks gestation and was absent in non-fetal skin fibroblasts. Excision repair and PA inducibility depended on the tissue of origin in addition to gestational stage, as shown for skin and lung fibroblasts from the same 12 week fetus. The sedimentation velocity of nucleoids, prepared from unirradiated fibroblasts, in neutral sucrose gradients with or without ethidium bromide, indicated the presence of DNA strand breaks in fetal cells. It is proposed that reduced DNA repair in fetal cells may result from alterations in DNA supercoiling, and that persistent DNA strand breaks enhance transcription of PA gene(s).

  9. 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

  10. In Vivo Neurochemical Characterization of Developing Guinea Pigs and the Effect of Chronic Fetal Hypoxia.

    PubMed

    Wang, Wen-Tung; Lee, Phil; Dong, Yafeng; Yeh, Hung-Wen; Kim, Jieun; Weiner, Carl P; Brooks, William M; Choi, In-Young

    2016-07-01

    The guinea pig is a frequently used animal model for human pregnancy complications, such as oxygen deprivation or hypoxia, which result in altered brain development. To investigate the impact of in utero chronic hypoxia on brain development, pregnant guinea pigs underwent either normoxic or hypoxic conditions at about 70 % of 65-day term gestation. After delivery, neurochemical profiles consisting of 19 metabolites and macromolecules were obtained from the neonatal cortex, hippocampus, and striatum from birth to 12 weeks postpartum using in vivo (1)H MR spectroscopy at 9.4 T. The effects of chronic fetal hypoxia on the neurochemical profiles were particularly significant at birth. However, the overall developmental trends of neurochemical concentration changes were similar between normoxic and hypoxic animals. Alterations of neurochemicals including N-acetylaspartate (NAA), phosphorylethanolamine, creatine, phosphocreatine, and myo-inositol indicate neuronal loss, delayed myelination, and altered brain energetics due to chronic fetal hypoxia. These observed neurochemical alterations in the developing brain may provide insights into hypoxia-induced brain pathology, neurodevelopmental compromise, and potential neuroprotective measures. PMID:27233245

  11. Oligodendrocyte development and the onset of myelination in the human fetal brain.

    PubMed

    Jakovcevski, Igor; Filipovic, Radmila; Mo, Zhicheng; Rakic, Sonja; Zecevic, Nada

    2009-01-01

    Oligodendrocytes are cells that myelinate axons, providing saltatory conduction of action potentials and proper function of the central nervous system. Myelination begins prenatally in the human, and the sequence of oligodendrocyte development and the onset of myelination are not thoroughly investigated. This knowledge is important to better understand human diseases, such as periventricular leukomalacia, one of the leading causes of motor deficit in premature babies, and demyelinating disorders such as multiple sclerosis (MS). In this review we discuss the spatial and temporal progression of oligodendrocyte lineage characterized by the expression of specific markers and transcription factors in the human fetal brain from the early embryonic period (5 gestational weeks, gw) until midgestation (24 gw). Our in vitro evidence indicated that a subpopulation of human oligodendrocytes may have dorsal origin, from cortical radial glia cells, in addition to their ventral telencephalic origin. Furthermore, we demonstrated that the regulation of myelination in the human fetal brain includes positive and negative regulators. Chemokines, such as CXCL1, abundant in proliferative zones during brain development and in regions of remyelination in adult, are discussed in the view of their potential roles in stimulating oligodendrocyte development. Other signals are inhibitory and may include, but are not limited to, polysialic acid modification of the neural cell adhesion molecule on axons. Overall, important differences in temporal and spatial distribution and regulatory signals for oligodendrocyte differentiation exist between human and rodent brains. Those differences may underlie the unique susceptibility of humans to demyelinating diseases, such as MS. PMID:19521542

  12. Bronchial ligation enhances murine fetal lung development in whole-organ culture.

    PubMed

    Blewett, C J; Zgleszewski, S E; Chinoy, M R; Krummel, T M; Cilley, R E

    1996-07-01

    Evidence exists from both congenital anomalies and animal models that normal fetal lung development is dependent on maintenance of fluid pressure within the developing "airways." Fetal tracheostomy, allowing free egress of airway fluids, results in lung hypoplasia, indicating that some airway distending pressure is required for normal lung development to occur. In contrast, fetal tracheal ligation, which increases fetal airway pressure, reverses lung hypoplasia in animal models. The authors' experiments test the hypothesis that large airway obstruction accelerates the development of murine lungs in vitro in whole-organ culture. Fetuses from time-dated pregnant CD-1 mice at day 14 of gestation were removed (term, 20 days), and the lungs were excised. The left bronchus of each lung was ligated (n = 26), after which the left lung was isolated and cultured at 37 degrees C (95% air, 5% CO2) in BGJb media supplemented with vitamin C and antibiotics. Some fetal lungs were cultured under similar conditions without bronchial ligation (n = 11). After 7 days in culture, the lungs were taken for various analyses. The lungs were fixed in either formaldehyde and processed for paraffin embedding for light microscopic evaluation and morphometric data collection, or were freshly minced and aliquots taken for total protein and DNA content. Several more ligated and unligated lungs were processed for ultrastructural analysis. Morphometric analysis on transverse sections of lungs showed significant differences in the lung tissue size, thickness, epithelial cell height, luminal areas, perimeters, and total number of airspaces (airway + primordial alveolar airspaces). It was evident that bronchial ligation promoted lung development. The ligated lungs displayed thinning of the primordial alveolar walls with cuboidal epithelial cells. The total number of airspaces per field was lower for better developed ligated lungs because of the increased area of airspaces compared with that of the

  13. Repercussion of acetylsalicylic acid during fetal development on later renal hemodynamics of rats.

    PubMed

    Vieira-Filho, Leucio D; Lucena-Júnior, José M; Barreto, Izabel S S; Angelim, José L C; Paixão, Ana D O

    2008-08-01

    Acetylsalicylic acid (ASA) during pregnancy reaches the fetus. It seems important to know possible repercussions of ASA on later renal function of the offspring, as well as repercussions of this drug on factors that may influence fetal development, such as maternal plasma volume and placental oxidative stress. It was evaluated whether ASA changes maternal plasma volume and/or placental oxidative stress, fetal weight and renal function of the offspring at adult life. ASA (100 mg/kg/day, p.o., dissolved in ETOH 10%) or ETOH 10% was administered to Wistar rat dams, from the day 7 to day 20 of pregnancy/parturition. Plasma volume and the placental oxidative stress were evaluated on day 20 of pregnancy, using, respectively, the Evans blue dye and the thiobarbituric acid reactive substances methods. Mean arterial pressure, renal blood flow (RBF) and glomerular filtration rate (GFR) were evaluated in the anesthetized offspring, at the age of 90 days, using a blood pressure transducer, a flow probe and inulin clearance respectively. Plasma volume was 76% (P < 0.05) higher in ASA compared with that in control dams, but placental oxidative stress was the same for both groups. Fetal body weight, the number of nephrons, GFR, RBF and renal vascular resistance were similar for the same gender among the offspring of the two groups. However, reduced hematocrit (9.8%, P < 0.05), increased renal plasma flow (27%, P < 0.05) and reduced filtration fraction (32%, P < 0.05) were seen in the female offspring. In conclusion, although ASA had increased maternal plasma volume, it did not change nephrogenesis nor GFR in the adult offspring. The changes in renal plasma flow and filtration fraction seen in the ASA female offspring might partially be due to the reduced hematocrit. PMID:18705748

  14. 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.

  15. 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. PMID:3781137

  16. 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

  17. Micro-CT evaluation of murine fetal skeletal development yields greater morphometric precision over traditional clear-staining methods.

    PubMed

    Oest, Megan E; Jones, Jeryl C; Hatfield, Cindy; Prater, M Renee

    2008-12-01

    Traditional techniques for quantification of murine fetal skeletal development (gross measurements, clear-staining) are severely limited by specimen processing, soft tissue presence, diffuse staining, and unclear landmarks between which to make measurements. Nondestructive microcomputed tomography (micro-CT) imaging is a versatile, well-documented tool traditionally used to generate high-resolution 3-D images and quantify microarchitectural parameters of trabecular bone. Although previously described as a tool for phenotyping fetal murine specimens, micro-CT has not previously been used to directly measure individual fetal skeletal structures. Imaging murine fetal skeletons using micro-CT enables the researcher to nondestructively quantify fetal skeletal development parameters including limb length, total bone volume, and average bone mineral density, as well as identify skeletal malformations. Micro-CT measurement of fetal limb lengths correlates well with traditional clear-staining methods (83.98% agreement), decreases variability in measurements (average standard errors: 6.28% for micro-CT and 10.82% for clear-staining), decreases data acquisition time by eliminating the need for tissue processing, and preserves the intact fixed fetus for further analysis. Use of the rigorous micro-CT technique to generate 3-D images for digital measurement enables isolation of skeletal structures based on degree of mineralization (local radiodensity), eliminating the complications of blurred stain boundaries and soft tissue inclusion that accompany clear-staining and gross measurement techniques. Microcomputed tomography provides a facile, accurate, and nondestructive method for determining the developmental state of the fetal skeleton using not only limb lengths and identification of malformations, but total skeletal bone volume and average skeletal mineral density as well. PMID:19048632

  18. 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. PMID:27055621

  19. Plane Localization in 3-D Fetal Neurosonography for Longitudinal Analysis of the Developing Brain.

    PubMed

    Yaqub, Mohammad; Rueda, Sylvia; Kopuri, Anil; Melo, Pedro; Papageorghiou, A T; Sullivan, Peter B; McCormick, Kenneth; Noble, J Alison

    2016-07-01

    The parasagittal (PS) plane is a 2-D diagnostic plane used routinely in cranial ultrasonography of the neonatal brain. This paper develops a novel approach to find the PS plane in a 3-D fetal ultrasound scan to allow image-based biomarkers to be tracked from prebirth through the first weeks of postbirth life. We propose an accurate plane-finding solution based on regression forests (RF). The method initially localizes the fetal brain and its midline automatically. The midline on several axial slices is used to detect the midsagittal plane, which is used as a constraint in the proposed RF framework to detect the PS plane. The proposed learning algorithm guides the RF learning method in a novel way by: 1) using informative voxels and voxel informative strength as a weighting within the training stage objective function, and 2) introducing regularization of the RF by proposing a geometrical feature within the training stage. Results on clinical data indicate that the new automated method is more reproducible than manual plane finding obtained by two clinicians. PMID:26011873

  20. VEGF165b in the developing vasculatures of the fetal human eye

    PubMed Central

    Baba, Takayuki; McLeod, D. Scott; Edwards, Malia M.; Merges, Carol; Sen, Tanusree; Sinha, Debasish; Lutty, Gerard A.

    2016-01-01

    VEGF165b is an anti-angiogenic form of VEGF165 produced by alternative splicing. The localization of pro-angiogenic VEGF165 and anti-angiogenic VEGF165b was investigated during development of the vasculatures in fetal human eyes from 7 to 21 weeks gestation (WG). The fetal vasculature of vitreous, which includes tunica vasculosa lentis (TVL), had moderate VEGF165 immunoreactivity at 7WG and very little VEGF165b. Both forms were elevated at 12WG. VEGF165 then decreased around 17WG when the TVL regresses but VEGF165b remained elevated. In choroid, VEGF165 was present in forming choriocapillaris (CC) and retinal pigment epithelium (RPE) at 7WG while VEGF165b was present in CC and mesenchymal precursors within the choroidal stroma. By 21WG, both forms were elevated in RPE and choroidal blood vessels but VEGF165b was apical and VEGF165 basal in RPE. Diffuse VEGF165 immunoreactivity was prominent in 12WG innermost retina where blood vessels will form while VEGF165b was present in most CXCR4+ progenitors in the inner neuroblastic layer and migrating angioblasts in the putative nerve fiber layer. By 21WG, VEGF165 was present in nerve fibers and VEGF165b in inner Muller cell process. The localization of VEGF165b was distinctly different from VEGF165 both spatially and temporally and it was often associated with nucleus in progenitors. PMID:22275161

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

    PubMed

    Velasquez, Juan C; Goeden, Nick; Herod, Skyla M; Bonnin, Alexandre

    2016-03-16

    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

  2. Development and trafficking function of haematopoietic stem cells and myeloid cells during fetal ontogeny.

    PubMed

    Heinig, Kristina; Sage, Fanny; Robin, Catherine; Sperandio, Markus

    2015-08-01

    Fetal haematopoiesis is a highly regulated process in terms of time and location. It is characterized by the emergence of specific cell populations at different extra- and intraembryonic anatomical sites. Trafficking of haematopoietic stem cells (HSCs) between these supportive niches is regulated by a set of molecules, i.e. integrins and chemokine receptors, which are also described for the recruitment of differentiated innate immune cells. In this review, an overview will be given on fetal haematopoiesis as well as trafficking of HSCs during fetal life. In addition, we will focus on the appearance of the first differentiated neutrophils and monocytes in the fetal circulation and describe how they acquire the ability to roll, adhere, and transmigrate into inflamed fetal tissue. Furthermore, we will discuss other effector functions of innate immune cells evolving during fetal ontogeny. PMID:25987546

  3. 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. PMID:25504763

  4. 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

  5. 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,…

  6. Fetal alcohol spectrum disorder: development of consensus referral criteria for specialist diagnostic assessment in Australia

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Fetal alcohol spectrum disorder (FASD) is known to be under-recognised in Australia. The use of standard methods to identify when to refer individuals who may have FASD for specialist assessment could help improve the identification of this disorder. The purpose of this study was to develop referral criteria for use in Australia. Method An online survey about FASD screening and diagnosis in Australia, which included 23 statements describing criteria for referral for fetal alcohol syndrome (FAS) and FASD based on published recommendations for referral in North America, was sent to 139 health professionals who had expertise or involvement in FASD screening or diagnosis. Survey findings and published criteria for referral were subsequently reviewed by a panel of 14 investigators at a consensus development workshop where criteria for referral were developed. Results Among the 139 health professionals who were sent the survey, 103 (74%) responded, and 90 (65%) responded to the statements on criteria for referral. Over 80% of respondents agreed that referral for specialist evaluation should occur when there is evidence of significant prenatal alcohol exposure, defined as 7 or more standard drinks per week and at least 3 standard drinks on any one day, and more than 70% agreed with 13 of the 16 statements that described criteria for referral other than prenatal alcohol exposure. Workshop participants recommended five independent criteria for referral: confirmed significant prenatal alcohol exposure; microcephaly and confirmed prenatal alcohol exposure; 2 or more significant central nervous system (CNS) abnormalities and confirmed prenatal alcohol exposure; 3 characteristic FAS facial anomalies; and 1 characteristic FAS facial anomaly, growth deficit and 1 or more CNS abnormalities. Conclusion Referral criteria recommended for use in Australia are similar to those recommended in North America. There is a need to develop resources to raise awareness of these

  7. 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

  8. 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...

  9. Mapping Primary Gyrogenesis During Fetal Development in Primate Brains: High-Resolution in Utero Structural MRI of Fetal Brain Development in Pregnant Baboons

    PubMed Central

    Kochunov, Peter; Castro, Carlos; Davis, Duff; Dudley, Donald; Brewer, Jordan; Zhang, Yi; Kroenke, Christopher D.; Purdy, David; Fox, Peter T.; Simerly, Calvin; Schatten, Gerald

    2010-01-01

    The global and regional changes in the fetal cerebral cortex in primates were mapped during primary gyrification (PG; weeks 17–25 of 26 weeks total gestation). Studying pregnant baboons using high-resolution MRI in utero, measurements included cerebral volume, cortical surface area, gyrification index and length and depth of 10 primary cortical sulci. Seven normally developing fetuses were imaged in two animals longitudinally and sequentially. We compared these results to those on PG that from the ferret studies and analyzed them in the context of our recent studies of phylogenetics of cerebral gyrification. We observed that in both primates and non-primates, the cerebrum undergoes a very rapid transformation into the gyrencephalic state, subsequently accompanied by an accelerated growth in brain volume and cortical surface area. However, PG trends in baboons exhibited some critical differences from those observed in ferrets. For example, in baboons, the growth along the long (length) axis of cortical sulci was unrelated to the growth along the short (depth) axis and far outpaced it. Additionally, the correlation between the rate of growth along the short sulcal axis and heritability of sulcal depth was negative and approached significance (r = −0.60; p < 0.10), while the same trend for long axis was positive and not significant (p = 0.3; p = 0.40). These findings, in an animal that shares a highly orchestrated pattern of PG with humans, suggest that ontogenic processes that influence changes in sulcal length and depth are diverse and possibly driven by different factors in primates than in non-primates. PMID:20631812

  10. [Influence of vitamin D on fertility and fetal development--review of literature].

    PubMed

    Doroszko, Adrian; Niedzielska, Ewa; Gronowicz, Edyta

    2008-03-01

    Cholecalciferol was qualified by FDA (Food and Drug Administration) into the A category if administered in recommended doses and to the D category if the doses exceed RDA (Recommended Dietary Allowance). There are very divergent opinions among researchers concerning the optimal daily dose of vitamin D-according to some of them, the optimal dose of vitamin D should exceed 400 Ul/24h. On the other hand, there is no data to estimate the optimal dose and to formulate recommendations. It is necessary to conduct research on animal models to fully comprehend the symptoms and syndromes caused by excess or deficiency of cholecalciferol. However, the conclusions of the research done on animals should not be over-generalized. Moreover, some data concerning the influence of vitamin D administered during the pregnancy on fetal development are often ambiguous. All these facts are the reason why recommendations of vitamin D supplementation in pregnancy still remain uncertain and need thorough investigation. PMID:18592855

  11. 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

  12. Maturation of the developing human fetal prostate in a rodent xenograft model

    PubMed Central

    Saffarini, Camelia M.; McDonnell, Elizabeth V.; Amin, Ali; Spade, Daniel J.; Huse, Susan M.; Kostadinov, Stefan; Hall, Susan J.; Boekelheide, Kim

    2015-01-01

    Background Prostate cancer is the most commonly diagnosed non-skin cancer in men. The etiology of prostate cancer is unknown, although both animal and epidemiologic data suggest that early life exposures to various toxicants, may impact DNA methylation status during development, playing an important role. Methods We have developed a xenograft model to characterize the growth and differentiation of human fetal prostate implants (gestational age 12-24 weeks) that can provide new data on the potential role of early life stressors on prostate cancer. The expression of key immunohistochemical markers responsible for prostate maturation was evaluated, including p63, cytokeratin 18, α-smooth muscle actin, vimentin, caldesmon, Ki-67, prostate specific antigen, estrogen receptor-α, and androgen receptor. Xenografts were separated into epithelial and stromal compartments using laser capture microdissection (LCM), and the DNA methylation status was assessed in >480,000 CpG sites throughout the genome. Results Xenografts demonstrated growth and maturation throughout the 200 days of post-implantation evaluation. DNA methylation profiles of laser capture micro-dissected tissue demonstrated tissue-specific markers clustered by their location in either the epithelium or stroma of human prostate tissue. Differential methylated promoter region CpG-associated gene analysis revealed significantly more stromal than epithelial DNA methylation in the 30 and 90-day xenografts. Functional classification analysis identified CpG-related gene clusters in methylated epithelial and stromal human xenografts. Conclusion This study of human fetal prostate tissue establishes a xenograft model that demonstrates dynamic growth and maturation, allowing for future mechanistic studies of the developmental origins of later life proliferative prostate disease. PMID:24038131

  13. 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

  14. Factors Affecting the Quality of Staff Development.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Purcell, Larry O.

    A review of the literature concerning the effectiveness and quality of staff development programs focuses on factors that affect the success of such programs. These factors include: individual concerns, training activities, applications, qualifications of consultants, scheduling, strategies, facilities, feedback, collaboration, and outcomes. It is…

  15. Affective Dimensions of Adult Literacy Development.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Durgunoglu, Aydin Y.

    To investigate affective dimensions of adult literacy development more systematically, researchers conducted a qualitative comparative analysis of four women participating in an adult literacy program in Istanbul, Turkey. The contrastive study chose two participants who completed the course; each was matched with a participant who had dropped out.…

  16. 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.

  17. 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…

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

    PubMed

    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. PMID:23386196

  19. Fetal functional imaging portrays heterogeneous development of emerging human brain networks

    PubMed Central

    Jakab, András; Schwartz, Ernst; Kasprian, Gregor; Gruber, Gerlinde M.; Prayer, Daniela; Schöpf, Veronika; Langs, Georg

    2014-01-01

    The functional connectivity architecture of the adult human brain enables complex cognitive processes, and exhibits a remarkably complex structure shared across individuals. We are only beginning to understand its heterogeneous structure, ranging from a strongly hierarchical organization in sensorimotor areas to widely distributed networks in areas such as the parieto-frontal cortex. Our study relied on the functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) data of 32 fetuses with no detectable morphological abnormalities. After adapting functional magnetic resonance acquisition, motion correction, and nuisance signal reduction procedures of resting-state functional data analysis to fetuses, we extracted neural activity information for major cortical and subcortical structures. Resting fMRI networks were observed for increasing regional functional connectivity from 21st to 38th gestational weeks (GWs) with a network-based statistical inference approach. The overall connectivity network, short range, and interhemispheric connections showed sigmoid expansion curve peaking at the 26–29 GW. In contrast, long-range connections exhibited linear increase with no periods of peaking development. Region-specific increase of functional signal synchrony followed a sequence of occipital (peak: 24.8 GW), temporal (peak: 26 GW), frontal (peak: 26.4 GW), and parietal expansion (peak: 27.5 GW). We successfully adapted functional neuroimaging and image post-processing approaches to correlate macroscopical scale activations in the fetal brain with gestational age. This in vivo study reflects the fact that the mid-fetal period hosts events that cause the architecture of the brain circuitry to mature, which presumably manifests in increasing strength of intra- and interhemispheric functional macro connectivity. PMID:25374531

  20. 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.

  1. Fetal functional imaging portrays heterogeneous development of emerging human brain networks.

    PubMed

    Jakab, András; Schwartz, Ernst; Kasprian, Gregor; Gruber, Gerlinde M; Prayer, Daniela; Schöpf, Veronika; Langs, Georg

    2014-01-01

    The functional connectivity architecture of the adult human brain enables complex cognitive processes, and exhibits a remarkably complex structure shared across individuals. We are only beginning to understand its heterogeneous structure, ranging from a strongly hierarchical organization in sensorimotor areas to widely distributed networks in areas such as the parieto-frontal cortex. Our study relied on the functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) data of 32 fetuses with no detectable morphological abnormalities. After adapting functional magnetic resonance acquisition, motion correction, and nuisance signal reduction procedures of resting-state functional data analysis to fetuses, we extracted neural activity information for major cortical and subcortical structures. Resting fMRI networks were observed for increasing regional functional connectivity from 21st to 38th gestational weeks (GWs) with a network-based statistical inference approach. The overall connectivity network, short range, and interhemispheric connections showed sigmoid expansion curve peaking at the 26-29 GW. In contrast, long-range connections exhibited linear increase with no periods of peaking development. Region-specific increase of functional signal synchrony followed a sequence of occipital (peak: 24.8 GW), temporal (peak: 26 GW), frontal (peak: 26.4 GW), and parietal expansion (peak: 27.5 GW). We successfully adapted functional neuroimaging and image post-processing approaches to correlate macroscopical scale activations in the fetal brain with gestational age. This in vivo study reflects the fact that the mid-fetal period hosts events that cause the architecture of the brain circuitry to mature, which presumably manifests in increasing strength of intra- and interhemispheric functional macro connectivity. PMID:25374531

  2. Maternal obesity leads to increased proliferation and numbers of astrocytes in the developing fetal and neonatal mouse hypothalamus.

    PubMed

    Kim, Dong Won; Glendining, Kelly A; Grattan, David R; Jasoni, Christine L

    2016-10-01

    Maternal obesity during pregnancy is associated with chronic maternal, placental, and fetal inflammation; and it elevates the risk for offspring obesity. Changes in the development of the hypothalamus, a brain region that regulates body weight and energy balance, are emerging as important determinants of offspring risk, but such changes are only beginning to be defined. Here we focused on the hypothesis that the pathological exposure of developing hypothalamic astrocytes to cytokines would alter their development. A maternal high-fat diet (mHFD) mouse model was used to investigate changes in hypothalamic astrocytes in the fetus during late gestation and in early neonates by using immunochemistry, confocal microscopy, and qPCR. The number of astrocytes and the proportion of proliferating astrocytes was significantly higher in the arcuate nucleus (ARC) and the supraoptic nucleus (SON) of the hypothalamus at both ages compared to control offspring from normal weight pregnancies. Supplemental to this we found that cultured fetal hypothalamic astrocytes proliferated significantly in response to IL6 (10ng/ml), one of the cytokines significantly elevated in fetuses of obese dams, via the JAK/STAT3 signaling pathway. Thus, maternal obesity during pregnancy stimulated the proliferation and thereby increased numbers of astrocytes in the fetal as well as early neonatal hypothalamus, which may be driven, during fetal life, by IL6. PMID:27326907

  3. Fetal programming in meat production.

    PubMed

    Du, Min; Wang, Bo; Fu, Xing; Yang, Qiyuan; Zhu, Mei-Jun

    2015-11-01

    Nutrient fluctuations during the fetal stage affects fetal development, which has long-term impacts on the production efficiency and quality of meat. During the early development, a pool of mesenchymal progenitor cells proliferate and then diverge into either myogenic or adipogenic/fibrogenic lineages. Myogenic progenitor cells further develop into muscle fibers and satellite cells, while adipogenic/fibrogenic lineage cells develop into adipocytes, fibroblasts and resident fibro-adipogenic progenitor cells. Enhancing the proliferation and myogenic commitment of progenitor cells during fetal development enhances muscle growth and lean production in offspring. On the other hand, promoting the adipogenic differentiation of adipogenic/fibrogenic progenitor cells inside the muscle increases intramuscular adipocytes and reduces connective tissue, which improves meat marbling and tenderness. Available studies in mammalian livestock, including cattle, sheep and pigs, clearly show the link between maternal nutrition and the quantity and quality of meat production. Similarly, chicken muscle fibers develop before hatching and, thus, egg and yolk sizes and hatching temperature affect long-term growth performance and meat production of chicken. On the contrary, because fishes are able to generate new muscle fibers lifelong, the impact of early nutrition on fish growth performance is expected to be minor, which requires further studies. PMID:25953215

  4. Fetal alcohol spectrum disorders.

    PubMed

    Dörrie, Nora; Föcker, Manuel; Freunscht, Inga; Hebebrand, Johannes

    2014-10-01

    Prenatal alcohol exposure (PAE) is one of the most prevalent and modifiable risk factors for somatic, behavioral, and neurological abnormalities. Affected individuals exhibit a wide range of such features referred to as fetal alcohol spectrum disorders (FASD). These are characterized by a more or less specific pattern of minor facial dysmorphic features, growth deficiency and central nervous system symptoms. Nevertheless, whereas the diagnosis of the full-blown fetal alcohol syndrome does not pose a major challenge, only a tentative diagnosis of FASD can be reached if only mild features are present and/or maternal alcohol consumption during pregnancy cannot be verified. The respective disorders have lifelong implications. The teratogenic mechanisms induced by PAE can lead to various additional somatic findings and structural abnormalities of cerebrum and cerebellum. At the functional level, cognition, motor coordination, attention, language development, executive functions, memory, social perception and emotion processing are impaired to a variable extent. The long-term development is characterized by disruption and failure in many domains; an age-adequate independency is frequently not achieved. In addition to primary prevention, individual therapeutic interventions and tertiary prevention are warranted; provision of extensive education to affected subjects and their caregivers is crucial. Protective environments are often required to prevent negative consequences such as delinquency, indebtedness or experience of physical/sexual abuse. PMID:24965796

  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. PMID:24344357

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2013-01-01

    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), a 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. PMID:24344357

  7. Apoptotic effects on maturation of mouse oocytes, fertilization and fetal development by puerarin.

    PubMed

    Huang, Fu-Jen; Chan, Wen-Hsiung

    2016-10-01

    Previously we identified puerarin, an isoflavone compound, as a risk factor for normal embryonic development that triggers apoptotic processes in the inner cell mass of mouse blastocysts, leading to retardation of embryonic development and cell viability. In the current study, we investigated whether puerarin exerts deleterious effects on mouse oocyte maturation, in vitro fertilization (IVF) and subsequent pre- and post-implantation development, both in vitro and in vivo. Notably, puerarin caused significant impairment of these processes in vitro. Pre-incubation of oocytes with puerarin during in vitro maturation led to increased post-implantation embryo resorption and decreased mouse fetal weight. In an in vivo animal model, intravenous injection with or without puerarin (1, 3 and 5 mg/kg body weight/day) for 4 days caused a decrease in oocyte maturation and IVF, and led to deleterious effects on early embryonic development. Importantly, pre-incubation of oocytes with a caspase-3-specific inhibitor effectively blocked puerarin-triggered deleterious effects, clearly implying that embryonic injury induced by puerarin is mediated by a caspase-dependent apoptotic mechanism. These results clearly demonstrate that puerarin has deleterious effects on mouse oocyte maturation, fertilization and subsequent embryonic development in vitro and in vivo. PMID:26712108

  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. PMID:21816724

  9. The fetal urinoma revisited.

    PubMed

    Yitta, Silaja; Saadai, Payam; Filly, Roy A

    2014-01-01

    The fetal urinoma is a rare but important diagnosis, as it indicates substantial underlying obstruction with implications for the functionality of the affected kidney. This case series describes a single center's experience with the diagnosis and management of fetal urinomas. All 25 cases were diagnosed or referred to our medical center over an 11-year period. Most cases were secondary to either posterior urethral valves or ureteropelvic junction obstruction. Fetal interventions, including percutaneous drainage of the urinoma and cystoscopic alleviation of bladder outlet obstruction, were performed in 4 cases. PMID:24371112

  10. 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. PMID:27373551

  11. 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

  12. Maternal-fetal thyroid hormone relationships and the fetal brain.

    PubMed

    Morreale de Escobar, G; Obregon, M J; Escobar del Rey, F

    1988-01-01

    Thyroid hormones are transferred from the mother to the fetus. Thus, despite the deiodinating enzymes of the placenta (26), some T4 and T3 is transferred, both before and after onset of fetal thyroid function, at least in those cases where fetal thyroid function is impaired. It is also possible that transfer occurs under normal conditions. Maternal to fetal transfer of T3 and T4 is partially limited. But it might be enough to mitigate severe fetal T4 and T3 deficiencies. However, the mitigating effects of both hormones are not equivalent for all fetal tissues. 1) Maternal T4 mitigates T4 and T3 deficiency of most fetal tissues, the brain included. 2) Maternal T3 mitigates T3 deficiency only in some fetal tissues, the brain being excluded. It does not mitigate cerebral T3 deficiency even at doses which are toxic for the mother, and it does not depress fetal plasma TSH. 3) Normal maternal thyroid function is important for fetal development. Maternal hypothyroxinemia is damaging to the developing fetal brain early in gestation. It might also later have adverse effects in gestation, if the fetal thyroid is impaired. Normal maternal T3 levels might avoid overt hypothyroidism of some fetal tissues, but is of no benefit to the brain. PMID:3176827

  13. Management of fetal malpresentation.

    PubMed

    Sharshiner, Rita; Silver, Robert M

    2015-06-01

    Fetal malpresentation is an important cause of the high cesarean delivery rate in the United States and around the world. This includes breech, face, brow, and compound presentations as well as transverse lie. Risk factors include multiparity, previously affected pregnancy, polyhydramnios, and fetal and uterine anomalies. Appropriate management can reduce the need for cesarean delivery in some cases. This review discusses management options and focuses specifically on external cephalic version and vaginal breech delivery. PMID:25811125

  14. 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.

  15. Effect of fetal undernutrition and postnatal overfeeding on rat adipose tissue and organ growth at early stages of postnatal development.

    PubMed

    Munoz-Valverde, D; Rodríguez-Rodríguez, P; Gutierrez-Arzapalo, P Y; López de Pablo, A L; Carmen González, M; López-Giménez, R; Somoza, B; Arribas, S M

    2015-01-01

    Intrauterine and perinatal life are critical periods for programming of cardiometabolic diseases. However, their relative role remains controversial. We aimed to assess, at weaning, sex-dependent alterations induced by fetal or postnatal nutritional interventions on key organs for metabolic and cardiovascular control. Fetal undernutrition was induced by dam food restriction (50 % from mid-gestation to delivery) returning to ad libitum throughout lactation (Maternal Undernutrition, MUN, 12 pups/litter). Postnatal overfeeding (POF) was induced by litter size reduction from normally fed dams (4 pups/litter). Compared to control, female and male MUN offspring exhibited: 1) low birth weight and accelerated growth, reaching similar weight and tibial length by weaning, 2) increased glycemia, liver and white fat weights; 3) increased ventricular weight and tendency to reduced kidney weight (males only). Female and male POF offspring showed: 1) accelerated growth; 2) increased glycemia, liver and white fat weights; 3) unchanged heart and kidney weights. In conclusion, postnatal accelerated growth, with or without fetal undernutrition, induces early alterations relevant for metabolic disease programming, while fetal undernutrition is required for heart abnormalities. The progression of cardiac alterations and their role on hypertension development needs to be evaluated. The similarities between sexes in pre-pubertal rats suggest a role of sex-hormones in female protection against programming. PMID:25470520

  16. Fetal Diagnostics and Fetal Intervention.

    PubMed

    McLaughlin, Ericka S; Schlosser, Brian A; Border, William L

    2016-03-01

    Advances in ultrasound technology and specialized training have allowed clinicians to diagnose congenital heart disease in utero and counsel families on perinatal outcomes and management strategies, including fetal cardiac interventions and fetal surgery. This article gives a detailed approach to fetal cardiac assessment and provides the reader with accompanying figures and video clips to illustrate unique views and sweeps invaluable to diagnosing congenital heart disease. We demonstrate that using a sequential segmental approach to evaluate cardiac anatomy enables one to decipher the most complex forms of congenital heart disease. Also provided is a review of fetal cardiac intervention and surgery from the fetal cardiologist's perspective. PMID:26876119

  17. Comparative Characterization of Cardiac Development Specific microRNAs: Fetal Regulators for Future

    PubMed Central

    Rustagi, Yashika; Jaiswal, Hitesh K.; Rawal, Kamal; Kundu, Gopal C.; Rani, Vibha

    2015-01-01

    MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are small, conserved RNAs known to regulate several biological processes by influencing gene expression in eukaryotes. The implication of miRNAs as another player of regulatory layers during heart development and diseases has recently been explored. However, there is no study which elucidates the profiling of miRNAs during development of heart till date. Very limited miRNAs have been reported to date in cardiac context. In addition, integration of large scale experimental data with computational and comparative approaches remains an unsolved challenge.The present study was designed to identify the microRNAs implicated in heart development using next generation sequencing, bioinformatics and experimental approaches. We sequenced six small RNA libraries prepared from different developmental stages of the heart using chicken as a model system to produce millions of short sequence reads. We detected 353 known and 703 novel miRNAs involved in heart development. Out of total 1056 microRNAs identified, 32.7% of total dataset of known microRNAs displayed differential expression whereas seven well studied microRNAs namely let–7, miR–140, miR–181, miR–30, miR–205, miR–103 and miR–22 were found to be conserved throughout the heart development. The 3’UTR sequences of genes were screened from Gallus gallus genome for potential microRNA targets. The target mRNAs were appeared to be enriched with genes related to cell cycle, apoptosis, signaling pathways, extracellular remodeling, metabolism, chromatin remodeling and transcriptional regulators. Our study presents the first comprehensive overview of microRNA profiling during heart development and prediction of possible cardiac specific targets and has a big potential in future to develop microRNA based therapeutics against cardiac pathologies where fetal gene re-expression is witnessed in adult heart. PMID:26465880

  18. Immunohistochemical and lectin histochemical studies on the developing olfactory organs of fetal camel.

    PubMed

    Ibrahim, Dalia; Taniguchi, Kazumi; Yamamoto, Yoshio; Taniguchi, Kazuyuki; Nakamuta, Nobuaki

    2015-07-01

    Little is known about the development of the olfactory organs of camel. In this study, prenatal development and neuronal differentiation of the vomeronasal organ (VNO) and the olfactory epithelium (OE) of the one-humped camel were studied by immunohistochemistry and lectin histochemistry. A neuronal marker, protein gene product (PGP) 9.5, but not a marker of fully differentiated olfactory receptor cells, olfactory marker protein, intensely labeled the olfactory receptor cells of the VNO and OE at 395 mm, 510 mm, and 530 mm fetal ages, indicating that the olfactory receptor cells are differentiated, but not fully matured both in the VNO and the OE. In 187 mm and 190 mm fetuses, PGP 9.5 yielded faint immunoreactive signals in the VNO, but not in the OE, although the presence of olfactory receptor cells were demonstrated in both tissues by intense WGA and LEL stainings. We conclude that the camel VNO and OE bear differentiated, but still immature receptor cells; in addition, the onset of neuronal differentiation seems to be somewhat earlier in the VNO than in the OE till half of the prenatal life. PMID:25950169

  19. Low and high dietary protein:carbohydrate ratios during pregnancy affect materno-fetal glucose metabolism in pigs.

    PubMed

    Metges, Cornelia C; Görs, Solvig; Lang, Iris S; Hammon, Harald M; Brüssow, Klaus-Peter; Weitzel, Joachim M; Nürnberg, Gerd; Rehfeldt, Charlotte; Otten, Winfried

    2014-02-01

    Inadequate dietary protein during pregnancy causes intrauterine growth retardation. Whether this is related to altered maternal and fetal glucose metabolism was examined in pregnant sows comparing a high-protein:low-carbohydrate diet (HP-LC; 30% protein, 39% carbohydrates) with a moderately low-protein:high-carbohydrate diet (LP-HC; 6.5% protein, 68% carbohydrates) and the isoenergetic standard diet (ST; 12.1% protein, 60% carbohydrates). During late pregnancy, maternal and umbilical glucose metabolism and fetal hepatic mRNA expression of gluconeogenic enzymes were examined. During an i.v. glucose tolerance test (IVGTT), the LP-HC-fed sows had lower insulin concentrations and area under the curve (AUC), and higher glucose:insulin ratios than the ST- and the HP-LC-fed sows (P < 0.05). Insulin sensitivity and glucose clearance were higher in the LP-HC sows compared with ST sows (P < 0.05). Glucagon concentrations during postabsorptive conditions and IVGTT, and glucose AUC during IVGTT, were higher in the HP-LC group compared with the other groups (P < 0.001). (13)C glucose oxidation was lower in the HP-LC sows than in the ST and LP-HC sows (P < 0.05). The HP-LC fetuses were lighter and had a higher brain:liver ratio than the ST group (P < 0.05). The umbilical arterial inositol concentration was greater in the HP-LC group (P < 0.05) and overall small fetuses (230-572 g) had higher values than medium and heavy fetuses (≥573 g) (P < 0.05). Placental lactate release was lower in the LP-HC group than in the ST group (P < 0.05). Fetal glucose extraction tended to be lower in the LP-HC group than in the ST group (P = 0.07). In the HP-LC and LP-HC fetuses, hepatic mRNA expression of cytosolic phosphoenolpyruvate carboxykinase (PCK1) and glucose-6-phosphatase (G6PC) was higher than in the ST fetuses (P < 0.05). In conclusion, the HP-LC and LP-HC sows adapted by reducing glucose turnover and oxidation and having higher glucose utilization, respectively. The HP-LC and LP

  20. Ontogenic development of brown adipose tissue in Angus and Brahman fetal calves.

    PubMed

    Landis, M D; Carstens, G E; McPhail, E G; Randel, R D; Green, K K; Slay, L; Smith, S B

    2002-03-01

    Brahman calves experience greater neonatal mortality than Angus calves if cold-stressed. To establish a developmental basis for this, three fetuses of each breed type were taken at 96, 48, 24, 14, and 6 d before expected parturition, and at parturition. Overall fetal BW tended (P = 0.08) to be greater for Angus than for Brahman fetuses. There was no difference between breed types in total brown adipose tissue (BAT) mass or grams of BAT/kg BW. Brown adipocyte density decreased 56%, whereas lipogenesis from acetate and glucose in vitro decreased 97% during the last 96 d of gestation in both breed types. Glycerolipid synthesis from palmitate declined by 85% during the last trimester but still contributed 98% to total lipid synthesis at birth. The fetal age x breed interaction was significant for lipogenesis from glucose (P = 0.05) and palmitate (P = 0.005); rates were higher at 96 d before birth in Brahman BAT but declined to similar rates by birth. Uncoupling protein-1 (UCP1) mRNA tripled during gestation in both breed types (P = 0.002), whereas mitochondrial cross-sectional area did not change (P = 0.14) during gestation. Neither the breed nor the age x breed effect was significant (P > or = 0.24) for UCP1 mRNA concentration or mitochondrial cross-sectional area. In both breed types, a marked decrease in BAT UCP1 mRNA between 24 and 14 d prepartum was associated with a similar reduction in lipogenesis from palmitate and a noticeable change in BAT mitochondrial morphology, as the mitochondria became more elongated and the cristae became more elaborate. Uncoupling protein-1 mRNA initially was elevated in Angus tailhead s.c. adipose tissue, but was barely detectable by birth, and tended to be greater overall (P = 0.09) in Angus than in Brahman BAT. If uncoupling protein activity in s.c. adipose tissue persists after birth, then s.c. adipose tissue may contribute more to thermogenesis in Angus newborn calves than in Brahman calves. In contrast, we did not observe

  1. Studies of the development of brain barrier systems to lipid insoluble molecules in fetal sheep.

    PubMed Central

    Dziegielewska, K M; Evans, C A; Malinowska, D H; Møllgård, K; Reynolds, J M; Reynolds, M L; Saunders, N R

    1979-01-01

    1. The development of the blood-brain and blood-c.s.f barriers to lipid insoluble substances of different molecular radii has been studied in fetal sheep, early (60 days) and late (125 days) in gestation, using labelled erythritol (C14), sucrose (3H or 14C), inulin (3H or 14C) and albumin (125I), or albumin and IgG detected by immunoassay. 2. Morphological studies of fetal brain and choroid plexus at the same gestational stages were carried out using thin section electron microscopy and the freeze fracture techniques. 3. Penetration of markers into c.s.f. was substantially greater at 60 days than at 125 days, but at both ages the steady-state level achieved appeared to be related to molecular size. 4. A simple model describing penetration from blood into c.s.f. at 60 days is proposed. It involves the assumption that c.s.f. and brain extracellular fluid are effectively separate compartments; morphological and permeability data which supports this assumption is presented. The data for c.s.f. at 60 days are consistent with the suggestion that the markers penetrate into c.s.f. by diffusion and are not restricted by small pores in the interface between blood and c.s.f. 5. The reduction in penetration which occurred by 125 days for all markers except erythritol appears to be accounted for by an increase in the sink effect and a decrease in the effective surface area for exchange between blood and c.s.f. 6. Intercellular tight junctions of both cerebral endothelial cells and choroid plexus epithelial cells were well formed at 60 days gestation. There was no change in junctional characteristics previously thought to correlate with transepithelial permeability (tight junction depth and strand number) between the two ages studied, although there were marked changes in permeability. 7. Evidence is advanced in support of the hypothesis that in the fetus much of the penetration of lipid insoluble non-polar substances across the blood-c.s.f. barrier and perhaps across the blood

  2. Xenotransplantation Models to Study the Effects of Toxicants on Human Fetal Tissues1

    PubMed Central

    Spade, Daniel J.; McDonnell, Elizabeth V.; Heger, Nicholas E.; Sanders, Jennifer A.; Saffarini, Camelia M.; Gruppuso, Philip A.; De Paepe, Monique E.; Boekelheide, Kim

    2015-01-01

    Many diseases that manifest throughout the lifetime are influenced by factors affecting fetal development. Fetal exposure to xenobiotics, in particular, may influence the development of adult diseases. Established animal models provide systems for characterizing both developmental biology and developmental toxicology. However, animal model systems do not allow researchers to assess the mechanistic effects of toxicants on developing human tissue. Human fetal tissue xenotransplantation models have recently been implemented to provide human-relevant mechanistic data on the many tissue-level functions that may be affected by fetal exposure to toxicants. This review describes the development of human fetal tissue xenotransplant models for testis, prostate, lung, liver, and adipose tissue, aimed at studying the effects of xenobiotics on tissue development, including implications for testicular dysgenesis, prostate disease, lung disease, and metabolic syndrome. The mechanistic data obtained from these models can complement data from epidemiology, traditional animal models, and in vitro studies to quantify the risks of toxicant exposures during human development. PMID:25477288

  3. Sensory hypo-excitability in a rat model of fetal development in Fragile X Syndrome

    PubMed Central

    Berzhanskaya, Julia; Phillips, Marnie A.; Shen, Jing; Colonnese, Matthew T.

    2016-01-01

    Fragile X syndrome (FXS) is characterized by sensory hyper-sensitivity, and animal models suggest that neuronal hyper-excitability contributes to this phenotype. To understand how sensory dysfunction develops in FXS, we used the rat model (FMR-KO) to quantify the maturation of cortical visual responses from the onset of responsiveness prior to eye-opening, through age equivalents of human juveniles. Rather than hyper-excitability, visual responses before eye-opening had reduced spike rates and an absence of early gamma oscillations, a marker for normal thalamic function at this age. Despite early hypo-excitability, the developmental trajectory of visual responses in FMR-KO rats was normal, and showed the expected loss of visually evoked bursting at the same age as wild-type, two days before eye-opening. At later ages, during the third and fourth post-natal weeks, signs of mild hyper-excitability emerged. These included an increase in the visually-evoked firing of regular spiking, presumptive excitatory, neurons, and a reduced firing of fast-spiking, presumptive inhibitory, neurons. Our results show that early network changes in the FMR-KO rat arise at ages equivalent to fetal humans and have consequences for excitability that are opposite those found in adults. This suggests identification and treatment should begin early, and be tailored in an age-appropriate manner. PMID:27465362

  4. Fetal muscle development, mesenchymal multipotent cell differentiation and associated signaling pathways

    PubMed Central

    Du, Min; Zhao, Jun X.; Yan, Xu; Huang, Yan; Nicodemus, Lander V.; Zhu, Mei J.

    2014-01-01

    Meat animals are raised for their carcasses, and carcasses are composed from muscle, fat and bone. Enhancing muscle growth and reducing fat accumulation improve the efficiency of animal production. Fetal stage is crucial for skeletal muscle development. Due to extensive efforts to increase lean growth, marbling (intramuscular fat) is reducing in beef, pork and chicken breast, which impairs the eating quality of meat. Because fat is the major contributor to meat flavor, the presence of intramuscular fat is indispensible for the high eating quality of meat. However, up to now, our understanding of adipogenesis (formation of fat cells) in skeletal muscle is limited. Adipocyte differentiation in skeletal muscle initiates from mesenchymal multipotent cells, which are abundant in skeletal muscle at early developmental stages. In this review, the known cellular mechanisms regulating adipogenesis from multipotent cells are summarized, which include hedgehog, Wingless and Int (Wnt)/α-catenin, and bone morphogenesis protein (BMP) mediated signaling pathways, as well as AMP-activated protein kinase. Promoting adipogenesis inside skeletal muscle will dramatically increase intramuscular fat, improving the quality of meat. PMID:20852073

  5. 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

  6. 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. PMID:25131946

  7. 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.

  8. 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.

  9. 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

  10. Specific heart granules and natriuretic peptide in the developing myocardium of fetal and neonatal rats and hamsters.

    PubMed Central

    Navaratnam, V; Woodward, J M; Skepper, J N

    1989-01-01

    The ontogenesis of specific heart granules and of the related natriuretic peptide activity in heart muscle was studied in fetal and neonatal rats and golden hamsters by ultrastructural analysis including immunogold labelling for ANP-28 and by radioimmunoassay. In both species, immunoreactive granules first appear in the myocardial sleeve of the embryonic heart tube during the looping stages which precede chamber formation and the peptide becomes detectable by radioimmunoassay two or three days later by which time the chambers are identifiable. Granule density and ANP concentration in the rat are higher than in the hamster at all stages of development. Almost all atrial myocytes express ANP in fetal hearts whereas, in the ventricular wall, cells containing immunoreactive granules are scattered. The density of granules in atrial myocytes increases during further stages of fetal and neonatal development, while it decreases markedly even in those ventricular myocytes which are immunoreactive. Changes in the ultrastructural appearance of ventricular SHG suggest that the mode of production of ANP changes in ventricular myocytes after birth but does not change in atrial cells. There is no correlation between the distribution of immunoreactive ventricular myocytes and that of the conducting system. In both species, the concentration of ANP in the atrial well is higher than ventricular levels from the outset and the disparity becomes exaggerated with development till, in six months old adult animals, the atrial to ventricular concentration ratio is about 3 x 10(3):1 in the rat and 1.5 x 10(3): 1 in the hamster. In the hamster, a distinct gradient of ANP concentration between the right and left atria is already established in the early fetal period and it becomes enhanced in the neonatal period. In the rat, however, a slight difference becomes discernible only after birth. Images Fig. 1 Fig. 2 Fig. 3 Fig. 4 Fig. 5 Fig. 6 Fig. 7 PMID:2532637

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

    PubMed Central

    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

  12. Ketamine affects the neurogenesis of rat fetal neural stem progenitor cells via the PI3K/Akt-p27 signaling pathway

    PubMed Central

    Dong, Chaoxuan; Rovnaghi, Cynthia R.; Anand, KJS

    2014-01-01

    Ketamine is widely used as an anesthetic, analgesic, or sedative in pediatric patients. We reported that ketamine alters the normal neurogenesis of rat fetal neural stem progenitor cells (NSPCs) in the developing brain, but the underlying mechanisms remain unknown. The PI3K-PKB/Akt (Phosphatidylinositide 3-kinases/protein kinase B) signaling pathway plays many important roles in cell survival, apoptosis, and proliferation. We hypothesized that PI3K-PKB/Akt signaling may be involved in ketamine-altered neurogenesis of cultured NSPCs in vitro. NSPCs were isolated from Sprague-Dawley rat fetuses on gestational day 17. BrdU (bromodeoxyuridine) incorporation, Ki67 staining, and differentiation tests were utilized to identify primary cultured NSPCs. Immunofluorescent staining was used to detect Akt expression, whereas, Western blots measured phosphorylated Akt and p27 expression in NSPCs exposed to different treatments. We report that cultured NSPCs had properties of neurogenesis: proliferation and neural differentiation. PKB/Akt was expressed in cultured rat fetal cortical NSPCs. Ketamine inhibited the phosphorylation of Akt and further enhanced p27 expression in cultured NSPCs. All ketamine-induced PI3K/Akt signaling changes could be recovered by NMDA (N-Methyl-D-aspartate) receptor agonist, NMDA. These data suggest that inhibition of PI3K/Akt-p27 signaling may be involved in ketamine-induced neurotoxicity in the developing brain, whereas excitatory NMDA receptor activation may reverse these effects. PMID:25231110

  13. 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

  14. 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…

  15. [Fetal programming].

    PubMed

    Lang, U; Fink, D; Kimmig, R

    2008-01-01

    The intrauterine environment not only influences fetal well-being and behaviour during pregnancy, but also predisposes the fetus in many health aspects of later life. The terms 'fetal programming' and 'developmental origins of health and disease' reflect the enormous impact of pregnancy-related factors on the individual and the health. PMID:19096216

  16. The Development of Upper Limb Movements: From Fetal to Post-Natal Life

    PubMed Central

    Zoia, Stefania; Blason, Laura; D’Ottavio, Giuseppina; Biancotto, Marina; Bulgheroni, Maria; Castiello, Umberto

    2013-01-01

    Background The aim of this longitudinal study was to investigate how the kinematic organization of upper limb movements changes from fetal to post-natal life. By means of off-line kinematical techniques we compared the kinematics of hand-to-mouth and hand-to-eye movements, in the same individuals, during prenatal life and early postnatal life, as well as the kinematics of hand-to-mouth and reaching-toward-object movements in the later age periods. Methodology/Principal Findings Movements recorded at the 14th, 18th and 22nd week of gestation were compared with similar movements recorded in an ecological context at 1, 2, 3, 4, 8, and 12 months after birth. The results indicate a similar kinematic organization depending on movement type (i.e., eye, mouth) for the infants at one month and for the fetuses at 22 weeks of gestation. At two and three months such differential motor planning depending on target is lost and no statistical differences emerge. Hand to eye movements were no longer observed after the fourth month of life, therefore we compared kinematics for hand to mouth with hand to object movements. Results of these analyses revealed differences in the performance of hand to mouth and reaching to object movements in the length of the deceleration phase of the movement, depending on target. Conclusion/Significance Data are discussed in terms of how the passage from intrauterine to extra-uterine environments modifies motor planning. These results provide novel evidence of how different types of upper extremity movements, those directed towards one’s own face and those directed to external objects, develop. PMID:24324642

  17. 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. PMID:25048992

  18. Implantable ultra-low pulmonary pressure monitoring system for fetal surgery.

    PubMed

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

    2012-11-01

    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 work, 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 twenty one days continuously at 256 Hz. Sample tracings of in vivo fetal lamb recordings are shown. PMID:22801521

  19. 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...

  20. PROGRESSION OF REGULATORY GENE EXPRESSION STATES IN FETAL AND ADULT PRO-T CELL DEVELOPMENT

    PubMed Central

    David-Fung, Elizabeth-Sharon; Yui, Mary A.; Morales, Marissa; Wang, Hua; Taghon, Tom; Diamond, Rochelle A.; Rothenberg, Ellen V.

    2014-01-01

    Precursors entering the T-cell developmental pathway traverse a progression of states characterized by distinctive patterns of gene expression. Of particular interest are regulatory genes, which ultimately control the dwell time of cells in each state and establish the mechanisms that propel them forward to subsequent states. Under particular genetic and developmental circumstances, the transitions between these states occur with different timing, and environmental feedbacks may shift the steady-state accumulations of cells in each state. The fetal transit through pro-T cell stages is faster than in the adult, and subject to somewhat different genetic requirements. To explore causes of such variation, this review presents previously unpublished data on differentiation gene activation in pro-T cells of pre-TCR deficient mutant mice, and a quantitative comparison of the profiles of transcription factor gene expression in pro-T cell subsets of fetal and adult wildtype mice. Against a background of consistent gene expression, several regulatory genes show marked differences between fetal and adult expression profiles, including those encoding two bHLH antagonist Id factors, the Ets family factor SpiB, and the Notch target gene Deltex1. The results also reveal global differences in regulatory alterations triggered by the first TCR-dependent selection events in fetal and adult thymopoiesis. PMID:16448545

  1. MARKERS OF INDIVIDUAL SUSCEPTIBILITY AND OUTCOME RELATED TO FETAL AND INFANT GROWTH AND DEVELOPMENT

    EPA Science Inventory

    To evaluate whether exposures to environmental toxins and psychological stress were related to impaired fetal growth or other adverse pregnancy outcomes, we established a prospective epidemiologic study of 187 women who were pregnant and at or near the World Trade Center (...

  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. Effects of perinatal exposure to delta 9-tetrahydrocannabinol on the fetal and early postnatal development of tyrosine hydroxylase-containing neurons in rat brain.

    PubMed

    Bonnin, A; de Miguel, R; Castro, J G; Ramos, J A; Fernandez-Ruiz, J J

    1996-01-01

    The exposure of pregnant rats to delta 9-tetrahydrocannabinol (delta 9-THC), the main psychoactive constituent of Cannabis sativa, during the perinatal period affects the gene expression and the activity of tyrosine hydroxylase (TH) in the brains of their offspring at peripubertal and adult ages. In the present work we explored whether these effects also appear during fetal and early neonatal periods, when TH expression plays an important role in neural development. To this end, the mRNA amounts for TH and the amounts and activity of this enzyme, in addition to catecholamine (CA) contents, were analyzed in the brain of fetuses at different gestational days (GD) and of newborns at two postnatal ages, which had been daily exposed to delta 9-THC or vehicle from d 5 of gestation. Results were as follows. The exposure to delta 9-THC markedly affected the expression of the TH gene in the brain of fetuses at GD 14. Thus, the amounts of its mRNA at this age were higher in delta 9-THC-exposed fetuses than in controls. This corresponded with a marked rise in the amounts of TH protein and in the activity of this enzyme at this age. Normalization was found in these parameters at GD16. However, a marked sexual dimorphism in the response of TH gene to cannabinoid exposure appeared from GD18 and was particularly evident at GD21, when TH-mRNA amounts increased in developing female brains, but decreased in developing male brains exposed to delta 9-THC, effects that were mostly prolonged to early postnatal ages. However, these changes did not correspond always with parallel changes in the amounts and activity of TH and in CA contents, as occurred in GD14, suggesting that delta 9-THC would not be affecting the basal capability to synthesize CAs in TH-containing neurons, but would affect the responsiveness of TH gene. We found only a marked increase in the production of L-3,4-dihydroxyphenylacetic acid, the main intraneuronal dopamine metabolite, in female newborns exposed to delta 9

  4. 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

  5. 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

  6. Development of a reliable questionnaire to assist in the diagnosis of fetal alcohol spectrum disorders (FASD)

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background A battery of clinical assessments was used in the Lililwan* Project, Australia’s first population-based Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders (FASD) prevalence study, conducted in the remote Fitzroy Valley, Western Australia. One objective was to develop and assess test-retest reliability of an acceptable questionnaire for collecting health information in remote Aboriginal communities feasible for use in the Lililwan Project. Methods A questionnaire was developed by paediatricians to assist in diagnosis of FASD. Content was based on a literature review of FASD diagnostic criteria, existing questionnaires and risk factors for FASD and birth defects. Aboriginal community members, including qualified Aboriginal language interpreters, adapted the questionnaire to ensure language and cultural components were appropriate for use in the Fitzroy Valley. Locally developed pictorial aids were used for gathering accurate information on alcohol use. Aboriginal ‘community navigators’ assisted researchers to translate the questions into Kimberley Kriol or local Aboriginal languages depending on participant preference. A subset of 14 questions was assessed for test-retest reliability in 30 parents/carers of children in the Lililwan Project cohort, who were interviewed by one rater using the entire questionnaire, then by a second rater who repeated 14 critical questions at least 6 hours later. Results The full questionnaire contained 112 items and took 50 minutes to administer. For a subset of 14 items from the full questionnaire percent exact agreement between raters ranged from 59-100%, and was below 70% for only 1 question. Test-retest reliability was excellent (Kappa 0.81-1.00) for 5 items, substantial (Kappa 0.61-0.80) for 5 items, and moderate, fair or slight (Kappa ≤0.60) for the remaining 4 items tested. Test-retest reliability for questions relating to alcohol use in pregnancy was excellent. When questions had moderate, fair or slight agreement

  7. Differential proteomic expression of human placenta and fetal development following e-waste lead and cadmium exposure in utero.

    PubMed

    Xu, Long; Ge, Jingjing; Huo, Xia; Zhang, Yuling; Lau, Andy T Y; Xu, Xijin

    2016-04-15

    Prenatal exposure to lead (Pb) and cadmium (Cd) has been associated with a series of physiological problems resulting in fetal growth restriction. We aimed to investigate the effects of Pb and Cd exposure on placental function and the potential mechanisms involved in fetal development. Placental specimens and questionnaires were collected from an e-waste area and a reference area in China. Two-dimensional electrophoresis combined with MALDI-TOF-MS/MS and molecular network relationship were performed to analyze differentially expressed proteins using a compositing sample pool. Compared with the reference group, the exposed group exhibited significantly higher levels of placental Pb and Cd (p<0.01), shorter body length and higher gestational age (p<0.01). After bivariate adjustment in a linear regression model, decreases of 205.05g in weight and 0.44cm in body length were associated with a 10ng/g wt increase in placental Cd. Pb showed a negative trend but lacked statistical significance. Proteomic analysis showed 32 differentially-expressed proteins and were predominantly involved in protein translocation, cytoskeletal structure, and energy metabolism. Fumarate hydratase was down-regulated in the exposed placenta tissues and validated by ELISA. Alterations in placental proteome suggest that imbalances in placental mitochondria respiration might be a vital pathway targeting fetal growth restriction induced by exposure to Cd. PMID:26895036

  8. 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.

  9. Development of the vitamin A-storing cell in mouse liver during late fetal and neonatal periods.

    PubMed

    Matsumoto, E; Hirosawa, K; Abe, K; Naka, S

    1984-01-01

    Vitamin A-storing cells in perinatal mouse liver were studied by chemical and autoradiographic analyses of exogenous vitamin A. The amount of retinyl palmitate in the fetal liver increased significantly following oral administration of retinyl acetate to the mother, suggesting the existence of storage sites of the vitamin in fetal liver. Light microscope semi-serial autoradiography of the fetal liver on the 15th day of gestation showed that 3H-vitamin A administered to the mother was incorporated into cells distributed exclusively along the hepatic blood vessels and the blood islands. Mitotic figures of the labeled cells were frequently observed. Electron microscope autoradiography revealed that the vitamin was incorporated into lipid droplets, rough endoplasmic reticulum and Golgi apparatus of the fibroblast-like cells in close apposition to the endothelial cells. The labeled cells differed in their ultrastructure from the vitamin A-storing cells (Ito cells) of the adult liver. In the later gestational period, silver grains tended to be more concentrated in lipid droplets, and the cytological features of the labeled cells became similar to those of the vitamin A-storing cells. Both retinyl palmitate content and the labeling of lipid droplets increased rapidly in the liver of neonates after commencement of suckling. The labeled cells had the same appearance as the vitamin A-storing cells (Ito cells). It is concluded that vitamin A transported across the placenta is taken up in the fetal liver by the cells distributed along the blood vessels, and that these cells proliferate in accordance with vascular development and gradually take on the characteristics of vitamin A-storing cells during the perinatal period. A defensive role of the vitamin A-storing cell against the toxic effects of vitamin A is also suggested. PMID:6476398

  10. A deficit in zinc availability can cause alterations in tubulin thiol redox status in cultured neurons and in the developing fetal rat brain

    PubMed Central

    Mackenzie, Gerardo G.; Salvador, Gabriela A.; Romero, Carolina; Keen, Carl L.; Oteiza, Patricia I.

    2012-01-01

    Zinc (Zn) deficiency during early development can result in multiple brain abnormalities and altered neuronal functions. In rats, a gestational deficit of Zn can affect the fetal brain cytoskeleton, and signaling cascades involved in cellular processes that are central to brain development. In the current paper, we tested the hypothesis that oxidative stress is involved in Zn deficiency-induced altered tubulin dynamics and the associated dysregulation of transcription factor NF-κB. For this purpose, we used two cell culture models (rat cortical neurons, human IMR-32 neuroblastoma cells) and an animal model of Zn deficiency. A low rate of in vitro tubulin polymerization, an increase in tubulin oligomers and a higher protein cysteine oxidation were observed in the Zn deficient neuronal cells, and in gestation day 19 fetal brains obtained from dams fed marginal Zn diets throughout pregnancy. These alterations could be prevented by treating the Zn deficient cells with the reducing agent tris(2-carboxyethyl)phosphine, or the presence of N-acetyl cysteine (NAC) and α-lipoic acid (LA). Consistent with the above, Zn deficiency-induced tubulin-mediated alterations in transcription factor NF-κB nuclear translocation were prevented by treating IMR-32 cells with LA and NAC. Binding of the NF-κB protein p50, dynein and karyopherin alpha (components of the NF-κB transport complex) to β-tubulin as well as the expression of NF-κB dependent genes (bcl-2, cyclin D1 and c-myc) were also restored by the addition of LA and NAC to Zn deficient cells. In conclusion, a deficit in Zn viability could affect early brain development through: 1) an induction of oxidative stress; 2) tubulin oxidation; 3) altered tubulin dynamics, and 4) deregulation of signals (e.q. NF-κB) involved in critical developmental events. PMID:21600978

  11. 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.

  12. Development of fetal and placental innate immune responses during establishment of persistent infection with bovine viral diarrhea virus.

    PubMed

    Smirnova, Natalia P; Webb, Brett T; Bielefeldt-Ohmann, Helle; Van Campen, Hana; Antoniazzi, Alfredo Q; Morarie, Susan E; Hansen, Thomas R

    2012-08-01

    Transplacental viral infections are dependent upon complex interactions between feto-placental and maternal immune responses and the stage of fetal development at which the infection occurs. Bovine viral diarrhea virus (BVDV) has the ability to cross the placenta and infect the fetus. Infection early in gestation with non-cytopathic (ncp) BVDV leads to persistent infection. Establishment of fetal persistent infection results in life-long viremia, virus-specific immunotolerance, and may have detrimental developmental consequences. We have previously shown that heifers infected experimentally with ncp BVDV type 2 on d. 75 of gestation had transient robust up-regulation of the type I interferon (IFN) stimulated genes (ISGs) 3-15 days after viral inoculation. Blood from persistently infected (PI) fetuses, collected 115 days post maternal infection, demonstrated moderate chronic up-regulation of ISGs. This infection model was used to delineate timing of the development of innate immune responses in the fetus and placenta during establishment of persistent infection. It was hypothesized that: (i) chronic stimulation of innate immune responses occurs following infection of the fetus and (ii) placental production of the type I IFN contributes to up-regulation of ISGs in PI fetuses. PI fetuses, generated by intranasal inoculation of pregnant heifers with ncp BVDV, and control fetuses from uninfected heifers, were collected via Cesarean sections on d. 82, 89, 97, 192, and 245 of gestation. Fetal viremia was confirmed starting on d. 89. Significant up-regulation of mRNA encoding cytosolic dsRNA sensors -RIG-I and MDA5 - was detected on d. 82-192. Detection of viral dsRNA by cytosolic sensors leads to the stimulation of ISGs, which was reflected in significant up-regulation of ISG15 mRNA in fetal blood on d. 89, 97, and 192. No difference in IFN-α and IFN-β mRNA concentration was found in fetal blood or caruncular tissue, while a significant increase in both IFN-α and IFN

  13. 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...

  14. 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...

  15. Changes in fetal mannose and other carbohydrates induced by a maternal insulin infusion in pregnant sheep

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background The importance of non-glucose carbohydrates, especially mannose and inositol, for normal development is increasingly recognized. Whether pregnancies complicated by abnormal glucose transfer to the fetus also affect the regulation of non-glucose carbohydrates is unknown. In pregnant sheep, maternal insulin infusions were used to reduce glucose supply to the fetus for both short (2-wk) and long (8-wk) durations to test the hypothesis that a maternal insulin infusion would suppress fetal mannose and inositol concentrations. We also used direct fetal insulin infusions (1-wk hyperinsulinemic-isoglycemic clamp) to determine the relative importance of fetal glucose and insulin for regulating non-glucose carbohydrates. Results A maternal insulin infusion resulted in lower maternal (50%, P < 0.01) and fetal (35-45%, P < 0.01) mannose concentrations, which were highly correlated (r2 = 0.69, P < 0.01). A fetal insulin infusion resulted in a 50% reduction of fetal mannose (P < 0.05). Neither maternal nor fetal plasma inositol changed with exogenous insulin infusions. Additionally, maternal insulin infusion resulted in lower fetal sorbitol and fructose (P < 0.01). Conclusions Chronically decreased glucose supply to the fetus as well as fetal hyperinsulinemia both reduce fetal non-glucose carbohydrates. Given the role of these carbohydrates in protein glycosylation and lipid production, more research on their metabolism in pregnancies complicated by abnormal glucose metabolism is clearly warranted. PMID:24917928

  16. The International Society for Developmental Psychobiology 39th Annual Meeting Symposium: Alcohol and Development: Beyond Fetal Alcohol Syndrome

    PubMed Central

    Molina, Juan Carlos; Spear, Norman E.; Spear, Linda P.; Mennella, Julie A.; Lewis, Michael J.

    2007-01-01

    As has been repeatedly demonstrated, alcohol can exert deleterious morphological and physiological effects during early stages in development. The present review examines nonteratological links existing between alcohol and ontogeny. Human and animal studies are taken into consideration for the analysis of fetal, neonatal, infantile, adolescent, and adult responsiveness to the drug. Sensitivity to alcohol’s chemosensory and postabsorptive properties, as well as learning and memory processes mediated by such properties, are examined from this developmental perspective. The studies under discussion indicate that, within each stage in development, we can trace alcohol-related experiences capable of determining or modulating alcohol seeking and intake patterns. PMID:17380525

  17. Fetal medicine and treatment.

    PubMed

    Westgren, Magnus

    2011-01-01

    Fetal medicine covers a broad spectrum of conditions that can be diagnosed before birth. Different disorders will require different treatment strategies and there is often an important ontogenetic aspect on how and when treatment can be implemented. Due to the limited availability there is a general lack of knowledge on how pharmacotherapy can be provided in the most efficient way. Until recently most knowledge about how different drugs are transferred and metabolized in the human fetus is based on very limited observational studies on concentrations of drugs in fetal blood and other fetal compartments. It might be that the rapid development of other non-invasive methods for fetal diagnostics such as isolation of fetal DNA and RNA in maternal serum, NMR imaging and other techniques could in the future be explored in fetal pharmacotherapy. Introduction of new treatment strategies are often based on extrapolation from experience in neonates and adults. However some fetal conditions are very specific for this time period in life. This especially entails disturbances in development as malformations, early growth restriction and several congenital disorders. Here it might be required to introduce new treatment strategies without any previous experience in humans. Example of this ethical dilemma is gene therapy for lung growth in severe cases of diaphragmatic hernia and early growth restriction. The risk-benefit issues need to be discussed in all these alternatives. However, it is likely that the concept of the human fetus as a potential patient is still in its infancy and with an improved understanding about fetal patho-physiology there will be a continued need for better knowledge of pharmacotherapy during this crucial time period in life. PMID:21882116

  18. Antibody repertoire development in fetal and neonatal piglets. XXIII: fetal piglets infected with a vaccine strain of PRRS virus display the same immune dysregulation seen in isolator piglets

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The Ig levels and antibody repertoire diversification in fetal piglets infected with an attenuated Porcine Reproductive and Respiratory Syndrome Virus (PRRSV) were measured. Serum Ig levels were greatly elevated in PRRSV-infected fetuses; IgG was elevated >10-fold, IgM > 8-fold and IgA >2-fold comp...

  19. Interpretation of the electronic fetal heart rate during labor.

    PubMed

    Sweha, A; Hacker, T W; Nuovo, J

    1999-05-01

    Electronic fetal heart rate monitoring is commonly used to assess fetal well-being during labor. Although detection of fetal compromise is one benefit of fetal monitoring, there are also risks, including false-positive tests that may result in unnecessary surgical intervention. Since variable and inconsistent interpretation of fetal heart rate tracings may affect management, a systematic approach to interpreting the patterns is important. The fetal heart rate undergoes constant and minute adjustments in response to the fetal environment and stimuli. Fetal heart rate patterns are classified as reassuring, nonreassuring or ominous. Nonreassuring patterns such as fetal tachycardia, bradycardia and late decelerations with good short-term variability require intervention to rule out fetal acidosis. Ominous patterns require emergency intrauterine fetal resuscitation and immediate delivery. Differentiating between a reassuring and nonreassuring fetal heart rate pattern is the essence of accurate interpretation, which is essential to guide appropriate triage decisions. PMID:10323356

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

    PubMed

    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

  1. 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

  2. Fetal echocardiography

    MedlinePlus

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

  3. Phenotypic Diversity in Chondromyxoid Fibroma Reveals Differentiation Pattern of Tumor Mimicking Fetal Cartilage Canals Development

    PubMed Central

    Zustin, Jozef; Akpalo, Hana; Gambarotti, Marco; Priemel, Matthias; Rueger, Johannes M.; Luebke, Andreas M.; Reske, Dennis; Lange, Claudia; Pueschel, Klaus; Lohmann, Christoph; Rüther, Wolfgang; Amling, Michael; Alberghini, Marco

    2010-01-01

    Chondromyxoid fibroma represents a rare benign cartilaginous tumor of young patients occurring in a subcortical metaphyseal location. The histogenesis of chondromyxoid fibroma has not yet been postulated, even though the conventional histology and recent immunohistochemical studies on phenotype of the mesenchymal cells and extracellular matrix components suggested its origin in immature cartilage. Therefore, we wished to compare the morphological pattern of immature cartilage tissue with chondromyxoid fibroma to investigate a possible developmental counterpart of chondromyxoid fibroma. Archival paraffin-embedded tissues from 4 fetal femora and 10 cases of chondromyxoid fibroma were analyzed simultaneously using histochemistry (safranin O) and established immunohistochemical antibodies (CD34, CD163, and smooth muscle actin). Vascularized cartilage canals growing into the fetal cartilage from the perichondrium displayed characteristic glomeruloid structures with central arterioles within the immature mesenchymal stroma and numerous superficial sinusoidal blood vessels accompanied by macrophage infiltration. Similarly, each case of chondromyxoid fibroma demonstrated admixture of two characteristic components: immature fibrous tissue of vascularized stroma with accumulation of macrophages in areas of superficial sinusoidal proliferation, and variable amounts of lobulated chondroid tissue. Based on the observed substantial morphological similarity between the cartilage canals and chondromyxoid fibroma, we suggest that the chondromyxoid fibroma represents a neoplasm originating from or mimicking the fetal cartilage canals within the immature cartilage. PMID:20671262

  4. High Frequency Ultrasound for In Vivo Pregnancy Diagnosis and Staging of Placental and Fetal Development in Mice

    PubMed Central

    Greco, Adelaide; Ragucci, Monica; Coda, Anna Rita Daniela; Rosa, Alessandro; Gargiulo, Sara; Liuzzi, Raffaele; Gramanzini, Matteo; Albanese, Sandra; Pappatà, Sabina; Mancini, Marcello

    2013-01-01

    Background Ultrasound is a valuable non-invasive tool used in obstetrics and gynecology to monitor the growth and well being of the human fetus. The laboratory mouse has recently emerged as an appropriate model for fetal and perinatal studies because morphogenetic processes in mice exhibit adequate homology to those in humans, and genetic manipulations are relatively simple to perform in mice. High-frequency ultrasound (HFUS) has recently become available for small animal preclinical imaging and can be used to study pregnancy and development in the mouse. The objective of the current study was to assess the main applications of HFUS in the evaluation of fetal growth and placental function and to better understand human congenital diseases. Methodology/Principal Findings On each gestational day, at least 5 dams were monitored with HFUS; a total of ∼200 embryos were examined. Because it is not possible to measure each variable for the entire duration of the pregnancy, the parameters were divided into three groups as a function of the time at which they were measured. Univariate analysis of the relationship between each measurement and the embryonic day was performed using Spearman’s rank correlation (Rs). Continuous linear regression was adopted for multivariate analysis of significant parameters. All statistical tests were two-sided, and a p value of 0.05 was considered statistically significant. Conclusions/Significance The study describes the main applications of HFUS to assess changes in phenotypic parameters in the developing CD1 mouse embryo and fetus during pregnancy and to evaluating physiological fetal and placental growth and the development of principal organs such as the heart, kidney, liver, brain and eyes in the embryonic mouse. A database of normal structural and functional parameters of mouse development will provide a useful tool for the better understanding of morphogenetic and cardiovascular anomalies in transgenic and mutant mouse models. PMID

  5. Effect of excessive, hormonally induced intrauterine crowding in the gilt on fetal development on day 40 of pregnancy.

    PubMed

    van der Waaij, E H; Hazeleger, W; Soede, N M; Laurenssen, B F A; Kemp, B

    2010-08-01

    weight in a uterus with >18 cases of late mortality (P < 0.0001). Furthermore, increased ovulation rates resulted in decreased within litter variation for fetal (P = 0.0018) and placental weight (P = 0.0084). At increased ovulation rates, the number of live fetuses remained similar, but placental development is impaired and the growth of the fetus is retarded compared with reduced ovulation rate, with effects likely lasting into adult life. PMID:20382879

  6. [Fetal-neonatal alloimmune thrombocytopenia].

    PubMed

    Muñiz-Díaz, E; Ginovart Galiana, G

    2003-06-01

    Fetal-neonatal alloimmune thrombocytopenia is the commonest cause of severe thrombocytopenia in the newborn. This disorder is due to the destruction of fetal platelets by a maternal platelet-specific antibody caused by fetal-maternal incompatibility. The most serious complication is intracranial hemorrhage (10-30 % of newborns), which may cause death (10 % of the reported cases) or irreversible neurological sequelae (20 %). The diagnosis is usually made after birth when most affected neonates have petechiae, purpura or overt bleeding. The degree of severity varies according to platelet count. Current methods allow detection of maternal platelet alloantibodies (usually HPA-1a). Clinical grounds and the exclusion of other causes of neonatal thrombocytopenia are required to establish an accurate diagnosis. Recurrence of this disease is very high and has prompted clinicians to develop antenatal prophylactic programs in subsequent pregnancies. However, the optimal treatment of at-risk pregnancies remains controversial. The early diagnosis of this process allows effective therapy based on the infusion of compatible platelets and IgG immunoglobulins when hemorrhage is not obvious. Antenatal management of subsequent pregnancies can prevent recurrence of thrombocytopenia and intracranial hemorrhage. The aim of this review is to draw pediatricians' attention to the importance of this probably under-diagnosed disease in which early diagnosis can prevent potentially severe complications. PMID:12781112

  7. The effect of in utero decapitation on the morphological and physiological development of the fetal rabbit lung.

    PubMed Central

    Meyrick, B; Bearn, J G; Cobb, A G; Monkhouse, C R; Reid, L

    1975-01-01

    A study has been made of the consequences of in utero decapitation on the morphological and physiological development of the fetal lung. Fetal rabbits were decapitated in situ at 22 days, without losing any amniotic fluid, and allowed to continue their development with their undamaged littermates as controls. Such decapitation, of course, removes the pituitary and so interferes with adrenal cortical development. Morphological studies showed an interference with lung development in that, although the number of alveolar saccules increased normally, their walls failed to thin. In the decapitated fetuses, a reduction in the number of lamellated bodies per Type II pneumonocyte was found at each age studied; while dense, homogeneous bodies were more numerous. The normal disappearance of glycogen in the Type II pneumonocytes of the decapitated fetuses was retarded. Physiological studies supported these findings. In control fetuses allowed to breathe for a while the Bubble Stability Ratio increased rapidly from day 26 to reach a maximum at 28 days; whereas, in the decapitated ones, bubble stability was not apparent before day 28 and by the 29th day had reached a maximum which was lower than that of the controls. In the control fetuses, lecithin was detected in lung fluid from 26 days on, and in stomach fluid from 29 days. It is argued that lung development must be, at least in part, under the control of the fetus' own pituitary-adrenal axis. Images Fig. 2 Fig. 3 Fig. 4 Fig. 5 Fig. 7 Fig. 8 Fig. 9 Fig. 13 PMID:1141052

  8. Cellular and Hormonal Disruption of Fetal Testis Development in Sheep Reared on Pasture Treated with Sewage Sludge

    PubMed Central

    Paul, Catriona; Rhind, Stewart M.; Kyle, Carol E.; Scott, Hayley; McKinnell, Chris; Sharpe, Richard M.

    2005-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to evaluate whether experimental exposure of pregnant sheep to a mixture of environmental chemicals added to pasture as sewage sludge (n = 9 treated animals) exerted effects on fetal testis development or function; application of sewage sludge was undertaken so as to maximize exposure of the ewes to its contents. Control ewes (n = 9) were reared on pasture treated with an equivalent amount of inorganic nitrogenous fertilizer. Treatment had no effect on body weight of ewes, but it reduced body weight by 12–15% in male (n = 12) and female (n = 8) fetuses on gestation day 110. In treated male fetuses (n = 11), testis weight was significantly reduced (32%), as were the numbers of Sertoli cells (34% reduction), Leydig cells (37% reduction), and gonocytes (44% reduction), compared with control fetuses (n = 8). Fetal blood levels of testosterone and inhibin A were also reduced (36% and 38%, respectively) in treated compared with control fetuses, whereas blood levels of luteinizing hormone and follicle-stimulating hormone were unchanged. Based on immunoexpression of anti-Müllerian hormone, cytochrome P450 side chain cleavage enzyme, and Leydig cell cytoplasmic volume, we conclude that the hormone changes in treated male fetuses probably result from the reduction in somatic cell numbers. This reduction could result from fetal growth restriction in male fetuses and/or from the lowered testosterone action; reduced immunoexpression of α-smooth muscle actin in peritubular cells and of androgen receptor in testes of treated animals supports the latter possibility. These findings indicate that exposure of the developing male sheep fetus to real-world mixtures of environmental chemicals can result in major attenuation of testicular development and hormonal function, which may have consequences in adulthood. PMID:16263515

  9. microRNA Profiling of Amniotic Fluid: Evidence of Synergy of microRNAs in Fetal Development

    PubMed Central

    Li, Tianpeng; Ling, Shucai

    2016-01-01

    Amniotic fluid (AF) continuously exchanges molecules with the fetus, playing critical roles in fetal development especially via its complex components. Among these components, microRNAs are thought to be transferred between cells loaded in microvesicles. However, the functions of AF microRNAs remain unknown. To date, few studies have examined microRNAs in amniotic fluid. In this study, we employed miRCURY Locked Nucleotide Acid arrays to profile the dynamic expression of microRNAs in AF from mice on embryonic days E13, E15, and E17. At these times, 233 microRNAs were differentially expressed (p< 0.01), accounting for 23% of the total Mus musculus microRNAs. These differentially-expressed microRNAs were divided into two distinct groups based on their expression patterns. Gene ontology analysis showed that the intersectional target genes of these differentially-expressed microRNAs were mainly distributed in synapse, synaptosome, cell projection, and cytoskeleton. Pathway analysis revealed that the target genes of the two groups of microRNAs were synergistically enriched in axon guidance, focal adhesion, and MAPK signaling pathways. MicroRNA-mRNA network analysis and gene- mapping showed that these microRNAs synergistically regulated cell motility, cell proliferation and differentiation, and especially the axon guidance process. Cancer pathways associated with growth and proliferation were also enriched in AF. Taken together, the results of this study are the first to show the functions of microRNAs in AF during fetal development, providing novel insights into interpreting the roles of AF microRNAs in fetal development. PMID:27166676

  10. Fetal chlorpyrifos exposure: adverse effects on brain cell development and cholinergic biomarkers emerge postnatally and continue into adolescence and adulthood.

    PubMed Central

    Qiao, Dan; Seidler, Frederic J; Tate, Charlotte A; Cousins, Mandy M; Slotkin, Theodore A

    2003-01-01

    Fetal and childhood exposures to widely used organophosphate pesticides, especially chlorpyrifos (CPF), have raised concerns about developmental neurotoxicity. Previously, biomarkers for brain cell number, cell packing density, and cell size indicated that neonatal rats were more sensitive to CPF than were fetal rats, yet animals exposed prenatally still developed behavioral deficits in adolescence and adulthood. In the present study, we administered CPF to pregnant rats on gestational days 17-20, using regimens devoid of overt fetal toxicity. We then examined subsequent development of acetylcholine systems in forebrain regions involved in cognitive function and compared the effects with those on general biomarkers of cell development. Choline acetyltransferase, a constitutive marker for cholinergic nerve terminals, showed only minor CPF-induced changes during the period of rapid synaptogenesis. In contrast, hemicholinium-3 binding to the presynaptic choline transporter, which is responsive to nerve impulse activity, displayed marked suppression in the animals exposed to CPF; despite a return to nearly normal values by weaning, deficits were again apparent in adolescence and adulthood. There was no compensatory up-regulation of cholinergic receptors, as m2-muscarinic cholinergic receptor binding was unchanged. CPF also elicited delayed-onset alterations in biomarkers for general aspects of cell integrity, with reductions in cell packing density, increases in relative cell size, and contraction of neuritic extensions; however, neither the magnitude nor timing of these changes was predictive of the cholinergic defects. The present findings indicate a wide window of vulnerability of cholinergic systems to CPF, extending from prenatal through postnatal periods, occurring independently of adverse effects on general cellular neurotoxicity. PMID:12676612

  11. 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

  12. 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

  13. Fetal Calcium Regulates Branching Morphogenesis in the Developing Human and Mouse Lung: Involvement of Voltage-Gated Calcium Channels

    PubMed Central

    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 Ca2+ 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

  14. 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.

  15. 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

  16. In vitro assessment of mouse fetal abdominal aortic vascular function

    PubMed Central

    Dilworth, Mark R.; Greenwood, Susan L.; Sibley, Colin P.; Wareing, Mark

    2014-01-01

    Fetal growth restriction (FGR) affects 3–8% of human pregnancies. Mouse models have provided important etiological data on FGR; they permit the assessment of treatment strategies on the physiological function of both mother and her developing offspring. Our study aimed to 1) develop a method to assess vascular function in fetal mice and 2) as a proof of principle ascertain whether a high dose of sildenafil citrate (SC; Viagra) administered to the pregnant dam affected fetal vascular reactivity. We developed a wire myography methodology for evaluation of fetal vascular function in vitro using the placenta-specific insulin-like growth factor II (Igf2) knockout mouse (P0; a model of FGR). Vascular function was determined in abdominal aortas isolated from P0 and wild-type (WT) fetuses at embryonic day (E) 18.5 of gestation. A subset of dams received SC 0.8 mg/ml via drinking water from E12.5; data were compared with water-only controls. Using wire myography, we found that fetal aortic rings exhibited significant agonist-induced contraction, and endothelium-dependent and endothelium-independent relaxation. Sex-specific alterations in reactivity were noted in both strains. Maternal treatment with SC significantly attenuated endothelium-dependent and endothelium-independent relaxation of fetal aortic rings. Mouse fetal abdominal aortas reproducibly respond to vasoactive agents. Study of these vessels in mouse genetic models of pregnancy complications may 1) help to delineate early signs of abnormal vascular reactivity and 2) inform whether treatments given to the mother during pregnancy may impact upon fetal vascular function. PMID:25056105

  17. 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…

  18. 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.

  19. 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)

  20. CD10/neutral endopeptidase 24.11 in developing human fetal lung. Patterns of expression and modulation of peptide-mediated proliferation.

    PubMed Central

    Sunday, M E; Hua, J; Torday, J S; Reyes, B; Shipp, M A

    1992-01-01

    The cell membrane-associated enzyme CD10/neutral endopeptidase 24.11 (CD10/NEP) functions in multiple organ systems to downregulate responses to peptide hormones. Recently, CD10/NEP was found to hydrolyze bombesin-like peptides (BLP), which are mitogens for normal bronchial epithelial cells and small cell lung carcinomas. Growth of BLP-responsive small cell lung carcinomas was potentiated by CD10/NEP inhibition, implicating CD10/NEP in regulation of BLP-mediated tumor growth. BLP are also likely to participate in normal lung development because high BLP levels are found in fetal lung, and bombesin induces proliferation and maturation of human fetal lung in organ cultures and murine fetal lung in utero. To explore potential roles for CD10/NEP in regulating peptide-mediated human fetal lung development, we have characterized temporal and cellular patterns of CD10/NEP expression and effects of CD10/NEP inhibition in organ cultures. Peak CD10/NEP transcript levels are identified at 11-13 wk gestation by Northern blots and localized to epithelial cells and mesenchyme of developing airways by in situ hybridization. CD10/NEP immunostaining is most intense in undifferentiated airway epithelium. In human fetal lung organ cultures, inhibition of CD10/NEP with either phosphoramidon or SCH32615 increases thymidine incorporation by 166-182% (P < 0.025). The specific BLP receptor antagonist, [Leu13-psi(CH2NH)Leu14]bombesin abolishes these effects on fetal lung growth, suggesting that CD10/NEP modulates BLP-mediated proliferation. CD10/NEP expression in the growing front of airway epithelium and the effects of CD10/NEP inhibitors in lung explants implicate the enzyme in the regulation of peptide-mediated fetal lung growth. Images PMID:1469102

  1. 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

    2015-07-01

    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. PMID:25863257

  2. Suboptimal maternal nutrition during early fetal kidney development specifically promotes renal lipid accumulation following juvenile obesity in the offspring.

    PubMed

    Fainberg, H P; Sharkey, D; Sebert, S; Wilson, V; Pope, M; Budge, H; Symonds, M E

    2013-01-01

    Reduced maternal food intake between early-to-mid gestation results in tissue-specific adaptations in the offspring following juvenile-onset obesity that are indicative of insulin resistance. The aim of the present study was to establish the extent to which renal ectopic lipid accumulation, as opposed to other markers of renal stress, such as iron deposition and apoptosis, is enhanced in obese offspring born to mothers nutrient restricted (NR) throughout early fetal kidney development. Pregnant sheep were fed either 100% (control) or NR (i.e. fed 50% of their total metabolisable energy requirement from 30-80 days gestation and 100% at all other times). At weaning, offspring were made obese and, at approximately 1 year, kidneys were sampled. Triglyceride content, HIF-1α gene expression and the protein abundance of the outer-membrane transporter voltage-dependent anion-selective channel protein (VDAC)-I on the kidney cortex were increased in obese offspring born to NR mothers compared with those born to controls, which exhibited increased iron accumulation within the tubular epithelial cells and increased gene expression of the death receptor Fas. In conclusion, suboptimal maternal nutrition coincident with early fetal kidney development results in enhanced renal lipid deposition following juvenile obesity and could accelerate the onset of the adverse metabolic, rather than cardiovascular, symptoms accompanying the metabolic syndrome. PMID:22951182

  3. 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. PMID:25229562

  4. Influence of endurance exercise and diet on human placental development and fetal growth.

    PubMed

    Clapp, J F

    2006-01-01

    The delivery of oxygen and substrate to the maternal-fetal interphase is the major maternal environmental stimulus which either up- or down-regulates feto-placental growth. During pregnancy, sustained exercise sessions cause an intermittent reduction in oxygen and substrate delivery to the interphase that may exceed 50% during the exercise but, it is probable that regular bouts of sustained exercise or exercise training may improve oxygen and substrate delivery at rest. The type of maternal carbohydrate intake (low- versus high-glycemic sources) and food intake frequency also influence substrate availability through their effects on maternal blood glucose levels and insulin sensitivity. As a result, different exercise regimens and/or different types of carbohydrate intake modify feto-placental growth. The magnitude and direction of the effect is determined by their average 24-h effect on oxygen and substrate availability at different time-points in pregnancy. In general, exercise in early and mid pregnancy stimulates placental growth while the relative amount of exercise in late pregnancy determines its effect on late fetal growth. Low-glycemic food sources in the diet decrease growth rate and size at birth while high-glycemic food sources increase it. Thus, it may be possible to improve pregnancy outcomes in both healthy, low-risk women and a variety of high-risk populaces by simply modifying maternal physical activity and dietary carbohydrate intake during pregnancy. PMID:16165206

  5. The open duration of fetal ACh receptor-channel changes during mouse muscle development

    PubMed Central

    Grassi, Francesca; Epifano, Olga; Mileo, Anna Maria; Barabino, Benedetta; Eusebi, Fabrizio

    1998-01-01

    We performed an RNase protection assay on cultured C2C12 mouse myotubes, demonstrating that the γ subunit of the fetal muscle acetylcholine receptor (AChR) exists as two splice variants, which differ in the presence of the amino terminal exon 5. We studied unitary ACh-evoked events in fibres acutely dissociated from the hindlimb flexor digitorum brevis muscle of BALB/C mice aged between embryonic day 16 (E16) and postnatal day 6 (P6). At all ages, the channel conductance was about 30 pS, typical of the fetal form of the AChR. The mean open time increased significantly from 6 ms at E16 to 9 ms at E19, then decreased to about 5 ms during the first postnatal week. The lengthening of the open time was considerably delayed in hypothyroid mice. Data were recorded at 24-26 °C. On the basis of previously reported experiments in heterologous expression systems, we suggest that the modulation of channel open time is related to the expression of the AChR incorporating the γs subunit. These events might be coupled to the crucial modifications in muscle innervation that take place during the same developmental period. PMID:9508804

  6. 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. PMID:22428084

  7. Is intrapartum fetal blood sampling a gold standard diagnostic tool for fetal distress?

    PubMed

    Mahendru, Amita A; Lees, Christoph C

    2011-06-01

    Developed in 1960s, cardiotocography is a screening test and fetal blood sampling (FBS) is an adjunctive, diagnostic technique to detect fetal hypoxia. A fetal blood sample pH value of less than 7.20 has a higher specificity than a pathological CTG to predict low Apgar score at 1 min. Though with a pathological CTG and despite a normal FBS pH value the risk of delivering a hypoxic infant is 30-50%, FBS has assumed considerable importance in purportedly reducing unnecessary obstetric intervention. The evidence for this is weak: the use of FBS with CTG has been shown to reduce operative vaginal deliveries though not Caesarean sections due to fetal distress. There is no difference in the umbilical artery pH at delivery with the use of intermittent FBS with CTG compared to CTG alone. FBS is an invasive procedure: obtaining an adequate blood sample is often difficult and the pH results are affected by handling of the sample, aerobic contamination and processing. Validation of intrapartum FBS requires that the pH and other values obtained are compared to a 'gold standard' technique. Although FBS has been compared to other tests such as scalp lactate, pulse oximetry, fetal ECG waveform analysis, and central haemodynamics in labouring rhesus monkeys, none of these can be considered as 'gold standard'. In the light of the existing evidence, the role of intrapartum FBS as a gold standard diagnostic technique is unproven. PMID:21300427

  8. Searching for Classical Brown Fat in Humans: Development of a Novel Human Fetal Brown Stem Cell Model.

    PubMed

    Di Franco, Alessandra; Guasti, Daniele; Squecco, Roberta; Mazzanti, Benedetta; Rossi, Francesca; Idrizaj, Eglantina; Gallego-Escuredo, José M; Villarroya, Francesc; Bani, Daniele; Forti, Gianni; Vannelli, Gabriella Barbara; Luconi, Michaela

    2016-06-01

    The potential therapeutic applications of targeting brown adipose tissue open new clinical avenues in fighting against metabolic pathologies. However, due to the limited extension in adult humans of brown depots, which are dramatically reduced after birth, solid cell models to study human brown adipogenesis and its regulatory factors in pathophysiology are urgently needed. Here, we generated a novel human model of brown adipose stem cells, hfB-ASC, derived for the first time from fetal interscapular brown fat depots. Besides the characterization of their stem and classical brown adipose properties, we demonstrated that these cells retain a specific intrinsic differentiation program to functional brown adipocytes, even spontaneously generating organoid structures with brown features. Moreover, for the first time, we investigated the thermogenic and electrophysiological activity of the in vitro-derived fetal brown adipocytes compared to their undifferentiated precursors hfB-ASC, in basal and norepinephrine-induced conditions. In conclusion, from interscapular brown fat of the human fetus we developed and functionally characterized a novel physiological brown adipose stem cell model early programmed to brown differentiation, which may represent a unique opportunity for further studies on brown adipogenesis processes in humans as well as the most suitable target to study novel therapeutic approaches for stimulating brown activity in metabolic pathologies. Stem Cells 2016;34:1679-1691. PMID:26866833

  9. Alterations in cortisol concentrations and expression of certain genes associated with neutrophil functions in cows developing retention of fetal membranes.

    PubMed

    Pathak, Rupal; Prasad, Shiv; Kumaresan, A; Kaur, M; Manimaran, A; Dang, A K

    2015-12-15

    Elevated cortisol concentrations have been reported to impair the functions and alter the life span of neutrophils in cows. The present study assessed the cortisol concentrations and expression of few genes related to longevity (Fas, Caspase 3, Bcl2) and margination (CD 62L, CD 18/11b) of neutrophils in relation to retention of fetal membranes (RFM) in dairy cows. Cortisol concentrations were significantly higher on the day of calving and day 2 postpartum in RFM cows than normal cows. Expression of CD 62L was significantly lower on the day of calving and day 2 postpartum in RFM cows than normal cows. While expression of Fas and GR was significantly lower on the day of calving, expression of Bcl2 was lower on day 7±2 pre-partum in RFM cows compared to normal cows. No significant difference was observed in the expression of CD 18/11b and Caspase 3 between RFM and normal cows. Cortisol concentration was negatively correlated with expression of GR, Fas, CD 62L, CD18/CD11b and Caspase 3, while positively correlated with immature neutrophil percentage and expression of Bcl2. It may be inferred that cortisol concentrations and expression of certain genes associated with lifespan and margination of neutrophils were altered in cows developing RFM compared to those expelled the fetal membranes normally. PMID:26384698

  10. 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. PMID:26178022

  11. Decreased Zinc Availability Affects Glutathione Metabolism in Neuronal Cells and in the Developing Brain

    PubMed Central

    Omata, Yo; Salvador, Gabriela A.; Oteiza, Patricia I.

    2013-01-01

    A deficit in zinc (Zn) availability can increase cell oxidant production, affect the antioxidant defense system, and trigger oxidant-sensitive signals in neuronal cells. This work tested the hypothesis that a decreased Zn availability can affect glutathione (GSH) metabolism in the developing rat brain and in neuronal cells in culture, as well as the capacity of human neuroblastoma IMR-32 cells to upregulate GSH when challenged with dopamine (DA). GSH levels were low in the brain of gestation day 19 (GD19) fetuses from dams fed marginal Zn diets throughout gestation and in Zn-deficient IMR-32 cells. γ-Glutamylcysteine synthetase (GCL), the first enzyme in the GSH synthetic pathway, was altered by Zn deficiency (ZD). The protein and mRNA levels of the GCL modifier (GCLM) and catalytic (GCLC) subunits were lower in the Zn-deficient GD19 fetal brain and in IMR-32 cells compared with controls. The nuclear translocation of transcription factor nuclear factor (erythroid-derived 2)-like 2, which controls GCL transcription, was impaired by ZD. Posttranslationally, the caspase-3-dependent GCLC cleavage was high in Zn-deficient IMR-32 cells. Cells challenged with DA showed an increase in GCLM and GCLC protein and mRNA levels and a consequent increase in GSH concentration. Although Zn-deficient cells partially upregulated GCL subunits after exposure to DA, GSH content remained low. In summary, results show that a low Zn availability affects the GSH synthetic pathway in neuronal cells and fetal brain both at transcriptional and posttranslational levels. This can in part underlie the GSH depletion associated with ZD and the high sensitivity of Zn-deficient neurons to pro-oxidative stressors. PMID:23377617

  12. 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

  13. 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.

  14. Temperature affects Aethina tumida (Coleoptera: Nitidulidae) Development

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The effects of temperature on several life history parameters of small hive beetles (SHB),Aethina tumida, were investigated under laboratory conditions. Our results showed that the development, body size and weight of SHB were dependent on temperature. Exposure of beetles to a lower (room) temperatu...

  15. [Does childhood obesity affect sexual development?].

    PubMed

    Wagner, I V; Sergeyev, E; Dittrich, K; Gesing, J; Neef, M; Adler, M; Geserick, M; Pfäffle, R W; Körner, A; Kiess, W

    2013-04-01

    The process of pubertal development is only partly understood and is influenced by many different factors. During the twentieth century there was a general trend toward earlier pubertal development. Fat mass is thought to be a major inducer of puberty. Owing to the rising epidemic of childhood obesity, the relationship between body composition in children and the rate and timing of puberty needs to be investigated. Some studies suggest that central obesity is associated with an earlier onset of pubertal development. Rapid weight gain in early life is linked to advanced puberty in both sexes. A clear correlation exists between increasing body mass index (BMI) and earlier pubertal development in girls. In boys the data are controversial: The majority of studies propose that there is an earlier puberty and voice break in obese boys, but some studies show the opposite. There are several factors and mechanisms that seem to link obesity and puberty, for example, leptin, adipocytokines, and gut peptides. Important players include genetic variation and environmental factors (e.g., endocrine-disrupting chemicals). This article presents the latest studies and evidence on this topic, underlining the inconsistencies in the data and, therefore, the need for further research in this area. PMID:23529595

  16. 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.

  17. Human Fetal Behavior: 100 Years of Study.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kisilevsky, B. S.; Low, J. A.

    1998-01-01

    Reviews literature on human fetal behavior. Includes descriptions of coupling of body movements and fetal heart rate and behavior maturation from conception to term. Discusses use of stimulus-induced behavior to examine sensory and cognitive development, and spontaneous and stimulus-induced behavior to assess fetal well-being. Notes research focus…

  18. Antibody repertoire development in fetal and neonatal piglets. XXI. VH usage remains constant during development in fetal piglets and postnatally in piglets exposed to environmental antigen

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Usage of variable region gene segments during development of the antibody repertoire in mammals is unresolved in part because of the complexity of the locus in mice and humans and the difficulty of distinguishing intrinsic from extrinsic influences in these species. We have addressed this using a hi...

  19. Metric optimized gating for fetal cardiac MRI.

    PubMed

    Jansz, Michael S; Seed, Mike; van Amerom, Joshua F P; Wong, Derek; Grosse-Wortmann, Lars; Yoo, Shi-Joon; Macgowan, Christopher K

    2010-11-01

    Phase-contrast magnetic resonance imaging can be used to complement echocardiography for the evaluation of the fetal heart. Cardiac imaging typically requires gating with peripheral hardware; however, a gating signal is not readily available in utero. No successful application of existing technologies to human fetal phase-contrast magnetic resonance imaging has been reported to date in the literature. The purpose of this work is to develop a technique for phase-contrast magnetic resonance imaging of the fetal heart that does not require measurement of a gating signal. Metric optimized gating involves acquiring data without gating and retrospectively determining the proper reconstruction by optimizing an image metric. The effects of incorrect gating on phase contrast images were investigated, and the time-entropy of the series of images was found to provide a good measure of the level of corruption. The technique was validated with a pulsatile flow phantom, experiments with adult volunteers, and in vivo application in the fetal population. Images and flow curves from these measurements are presented. Additionally, numerical simulations were used to investigate the degree to which heart rate variability affects the reconstruction process. Metric optimized gating enables imaging with conventional phase-contrast magnetic resonance imaging sequences in the absence of a gating signal, permitting flow measurements in the great vessels in utero. PMID:20632406

  20. Maternal and fetal origins of lung disease in adulthood.

    PubMed

    Harding, Richard; Maritz, Gert

    2012-04-01

    This review focuses on genetic and environmental influences that result in long term alterations in lung structure and function. Environmental factors operating during fetal and early postnatal life can have persistent effects on lung development and so influence lung function and respiratory health throughout life. Common factors affecting the quality of the intrauterine environment that can alter lung development include fetal nutrient and oxygen availability leading to intrauterine growth restriction, fetal intrathoracic space, intrauterine infection or inflammation, maternal tobacco smoking and other drug exposures. Similarly, factors that operate during early postnatal life, such as mechanical ventilation and high FiO(2) in the case of preterm birth, undernutrition, exposure to tobacco smoke and respiratory infections, can all lead to persistent alterations in lung structure and function. Greater awareness of the many prenatal and early postnatal factors that can alter lung development will help to improve lung development and hence respiratory health throughout life. PMID:22277111

  1. Bovine Viral Diarrhea Virus: Prevention of Persistent Fetal Infection by a Combination of Two Mutations Affecting Erns RNase and Npro Protease▿

    PubMed Central

    Meyers, Gregor; Ege, Andreas; Fetzer, Christiane; von Freyburg, Martina; Elbers, Knut; Carr, Veronica; Prentice, Helen; Charleston, Bryan; Schürmann, Eva-Maria

    2007-01-01

    Different genetically engineered mutants of bovine viral diarrhea virus (BVDV) were analyzed for the ability to establish infection in the fetuses of pregnant heifers. The virus mutants exhibited either a deletion of the overwhelming part of the genomic region coding for the N-terminal protease Npro, a deletion of codon 349, which abrogates the RNase activity of the structural glycoprotein Erns, or a combination of both mutations. Two months after infection of pregnant cattle with wild-type virus or either of the single mutants, the majority of the fetuses contained virus or were aborted or found dead in the uterus. In contrast, the double mutant was not recovered from fetal tissues after a similar challenge, and no dead fetuses were found. This result was verified with a nonrelated BVDV containing similar mutations. After intrauterine challenge with wild-type virus, mutated viruses, and cytopathogenic BVDV, all viruses could be detected in fetal tissue after 5, 7, and 14 days. Type 1 interferon (IFN) could be detected in fetal serum after challenge, except with wild-type noncytopathogenic BVDV. On days 7 and 14 after challenge, the largest quantities of IFN in fetal serum were induced by the Npro and RNase-negative double mutant virus. The longer duration of fetal infection with the double mutant resulted in abortion. Therefore, for the first time, we have demonstrated the essential role of both Npro and Erns RNase in blocking interferon induction and establishing persistent infection by a pestivirus in the natural host. PMID:17215285

  2. 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. PMID:26344048

  3. Fetal and childhood development of the intrapulmonary veins in man—branching pattern and structure

    PubMed Central

    Hislop, Alison; Reid, Lynne

    1973-01-01

    The drainage pattern and the structure of the pulmonary veins have been described quantitatively in a series of fetal and child lungs after injection of the veins with a radio-opaque medium. The drainage pattern of the pre-acinar region is complete by half-way through gestation and corresponds with the growth of the pulmonary arteries. There is new growth of veins within the acinus during childhood. Four types of veins arising from five peripheral sites have been described. The change in dimensions with age have also been measured. A measurable muscle layer could not be found in the walls of the veins before birth though some muscle cells were present from 28 weeks of gestation. The thickness of the muscle coat in any vein was similar at birth and in a 3- and 10-year-old child and in all cases was less than in a pulmonary artery of the same size. The muscle cells were of smaller diameter in the veins than in the arteries. Along any venous pathway between a non-muscular and muscular structure was a region where part of the wall was muscular: these veins were termed partially muscular. Their distribution by size was similar at all ages. Images PMID:4724499

  4. Fate and Development of Human Vomeronasal Organ – A Microscopic Fetal Study

    PubMed Central

    Fenn, T.K. Aleyemma; Devi, M. Nirmala; Hebzibah, T. Deborah Joy; Jamuna, M.; Sundaram, K. Kalyana

    2016-01-01

    Introduction The existence of Vomeronasal organ in human is a controversial subject. Presence of Vomeronasal organ and its structure was not reported in standard text books. The presence of Vomeronasal organ in fetal life is doubtful. Hence identification of the organ by histological examination was planned. Materials and Methods A study was conducted on resected specimens of nasal septum obtained from 45 spontaneously aborted fetuses from Obstetrics and Gynaecology department, PSG Institute of Medical Sciences and Research, Coimbatore, after ethical clearance. Results The histological structure of Vomeronasal organ was observed from 11 weeks old fetus. The epithelial lining of the organ, presence of cilia, presence of lamina propria, acini and the blood vessel and the types of cells were observed. The organ was lined by pseudostratified columnar epithelium. The organ showed Lamina propria with serous acini from 18 weeks fetus. Vomeronasal duct opening into the nasal cavity and three types of cells were observed in 28 weeks fetus. Conclusion Knowledge about the persistence of Vomeronasal organ in fetuses and its structure need to be known. The organ may be found as a putative pit posterior to anterior nasal spine. The organ may be damaged in nasal septal surgeries and nasal endoscopic procedures. The organ may not be seen on gross examination in all human fetuses and cadavers. PMID:27134849

  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

    2016-08-01

    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. PMID:27225752

  6. 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.)

  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. 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...

  9. 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…

  10. Thyroid hormone regulation of gene expression in the developing rat fetal cerebral cortex: prominent role of the Ca2+/calmodulin-dependent protein kinase IV pathway.

    PubMed

    Morte, Beatriz; Díez, Diego; Ausó, Eva; Belinchón, Mónica M; Gil-Ibáñez, Pilar; Grijota-Martínez, Carmen; Navarro, Daniela; de Escobar, Gabriella Morreale; Berbel, Pere; Bernal, Juan

    2010-02-01

    Thyroid hormones influence brain development through regulation of gene expression mediated by nuclear receptors. Nuclear receptor concentration increases rapidly in the human fetus during the second trimester, a period of high sensitivity of the brain to thyroid hormones. In the rat, the equivalent period is the last quarter of pregnancy. However, little is known about thyroid hormone action in the fetal brain, and in rodents, most thyroid hormone-regulated genes have been identified during the postnatal period. To identify potential targets of thyroid hormone in the fetal brain, we induced maternal and fetal hypothyroidism by maternal thyroidectomy followed by antithyroid drug (2-mercapto-1-methylimidazole) treatment. Microarray analysis identified differentially expressed genes in the cerebral cortex of hypothyroid fetuses on d 21 after conception. Gene function analysis revealed genes involved in the biogenesis of the cytoskeleton, neuronal migration and growth, and branching of neurites. Twenty percent of the differentially expressed genes were related to each other centered on the Ca(2+) and calmodulin-activated kinase (Camk4) pathway. Camk4 was regulated directly by T(3) in primary cultured neurons from fetal cortex, and the Camk4 protein was also induced by thyroid hormone. No differentially expressed genes were recovered when euthyroid fetuses from hypothyroid mothers were compared with fetuses from normal mothers. Although the results do not rule out a specific contribution from the mother, especially at earlier stages of pregnancy, they indicate that the main regulators of thyroid hormone-dependent, fetal brain gene expression near term are the fetal thyroid hormones. PMID:20056827

  11. Adverse Fetal and Neonatal Outcomes Associated with a Life-Long High Fat Diet: Role of Altered Development of the Placental Vasculature

    PubMed Central

    Petrik, Jim J.; Storozhuk, Yaryna; Paez-Parent, Sabrina; Dai, Qin; Samjoo, Imtiaz A.; Mansell, Margaret; Gruslin, Andree; Holloway, Alison C.; Raha, Sandeep

    2012-01-01

    Maternal obesity results in a number of obstetrical and fetal complications with both immediate and long-term consequences. The increased prevalence of obesity has resulted in increasing numbers of women of reproductive age in this high-risk group. Since many of these obese women have been subjected to hypercaloric diets from early childhood we have developed a rodent model of life-long maternal obesity to more clearly understand the mechanisms that contribute to adverse pregnancy outcomes in obese women. Female Sprague Dawley rats were fed a control diet (CON - 16% of calories from fat) or high fat diet (HF - 45% of calories from fat) from 3 to 19 weeks of age. Prior to pregnancy HF-fed dams exhibited significant increases in body fat, serum leptin and triglycerides. A subset of dams was sacrificed at gestational day 15 to evaluate fetal and placental development. The remaining animals were allowed to deliver normally. HF-fed dams exhibited a more than 3-fold increase in fetal death and decreased neonatal survival. These outcomes were associated with altered vascular development in the placenta, as well as increased hypoxia in the labyrinth. We propose that the altered placental vasculature may result in reduced oxygenation of the fetal tissues contributing to premature demise and poor neonatal survival. PMID:22442686

  12. 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 ...

  13. Intrapartum fetal resuscitation.

    PubMed

    Cowan, D B

    1980-08-30

    Fetal distress is defined. The pathophysiology of fetal distress is discussed and tretment is recommended. The principles of intrapartum fetal resuscitation are proposed, with particular reference to the inhibition of uterine activity. PMID:7404260

  14. Ongoing neural development of affective theory of mind in adolescence

    PubMed Central

    Weigelt, Sarah; Döhnel, Katrin; Smolka, Michael N.; Kliegel, Matthias

    2014-01-01

    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. PMID:23716712

  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. PMID:23716712

  16. 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. PMID:27603537

  17. 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

  18. An interdisciplinary fetal/neonatal neurology program.

    PubMed

    Scher, Mark S

    2012-04-01

    A fetal/neonatal neurology program should encompass interdisciplinary service, educational and research objectives, merging curricula concerning maternal, placental, fetal and neonatal contributions to brain health and disease. This approach is anchored by research in early life programming that demonstrates that prenatal and postnatal factors influence long-term neurologic health. This concept also supports the design of neuroprotective interventions during critical periods of brain development when brain circuitries more optimally adapt to maturational challenges. Preventive, rescue and repair protocols will transform pediatric medical practices, to promote improved childhood outcomes. Inclusion of life-course science and research will identify medical and socioeconomic factors that favorably or adversely affect quality of life into adulthood. Greater awareness of the convergence of developmental origins of brain health and disease and developmental aging theories will influence public health policies, to encourage financial support for programs that will improve the quality of life for the child and adult. PMID:22290854

  19. Yolk Sac Macrophages, Fetal Liver, and Adult Monocytes Can Colonize an Empty Niche and Develop into Functional Tissue-Resident Macrophages.

    PubMed

    van de Laar, Lianne; Saelens, Wouter; De Prijck, Sofie; Martens, Liesbet; Scott, Charlotte L; Van Isterdael, Gert; Hoffmann, Eik; Beyaert, Rudi; Saeys, Yvan; Lambrecht, Bart N; Guilliams, Martin

    2016-04-19

    Tissue-resident macrophages can derive from yolk sac macrophages (YS-Macs), fetal liver monocytes (FL-MOs), or adult bone-marrow monocytes (BM-MOs). The relative capacity of these precursors to colonize a niche, self-maintain, and perform tissue-specific functions is unknown. We simultaneously transferred traceable YS-Macs, FL-MOs, and BM-MOs into the empty alveolar macrophage (AM) niche of neonatal Csf2rb(-/-) mice. All subsets produced AMs, but in competition preferential outgrowth of FL-MOs was observed, correlating with their superior granulocyte macrophage-colony stimulating factor (GM-CSF) reactivity and proliferation capacity. When transferred separately, however, all precursors efficiently colonized the alveolar niche and generated AMs that were transcriptionally almost identical, self-maintained, and durably prevented alveolar proteinosis. Mature liver, peritoneal, or colon macrophages could not efficiently colonize the empty AM niche, whereas mature AMs could. Thus, precursor origin does not affect the development of functional self-maintaining tissue-resident macrophages and the plasticity of the mononuclear phagocyte system is largest at the precursor stage. PMID:26992565

  20. Dipentyl Phthalate Dosing during Sexual Differentiation Disrupts Fetal Testis Function and Postnatal Development of the Male Sprague-Dawley Rat with Greater Relative Potency than Other Phthalates

    PubMed Central

    Hannas, Bethany R.; Furr, Johnathan; Lambright, Christy S.; Wilson, Vickie S.; Foster, Paul M. D.; Gray, L. Earl

    2011-01-01

    Phthalate esters (PEs) constitute a large class of plasticizer compounds that are widely used for many consumer product applications. Ten or more members of the PE class of compounds are known to induce male fetal endocrine toxicity and postnatal reproductive malformations by disrupting androgen production during the sexual differentiation period of development. An early study conducted in the rat pubertal model suggested that dipentyl phthalate (DPeP) may be a more potent testicular toxicant than some more extensively studied phthalates. Regulatory agencies require dose-response and potency data to facilitate risk assessment; however, very little data are currently available for DPeP. The goal of this study was to establish a more comprehensive data set for DPeP, focusing on dose-response and potency information for fetal and postnatal male reproductive endpoints. We dosed pregnant rats on gestational day (GD) 17 or GD 14–18 and subsequently evaluated fetal testicular testosterone (T) production on GD 17.5 and GD 18, respectively. We also dosed pregnant rats on GD 8–18 and evaluated early postnatal endpoints in male offspring. Comparison of these data to data previously obtained under similar conditions for di (2-ethylhexyl) phthalate indicates that DPeP is approximately eightfold more potent in reducing fetal T production and two- to threefold more potent in inducing development of early postnatal male reproductive malformations. Additionally, fetal testicular T production was more sensitive to inhibitory effects of DPeP exposure than was gene expression of target genes involved in male reproductive development, supporting the use of this endpoint as a critical effect in the risk assessment process. PMID:21177253

  1. Fetal alloimmune thrombocytopenia and maternal intravenous immunoglobulin infusion

    PubMed Central

    Giers, Günther; Wenzel, Folker; Stockschläder, Markus; Riethmacher, Regina; Lorenz, Horst; Tutschek, Boris

    2010-01-01

    Background Different therapeutic approaches have been used in fetal-neonatal alloimmune thrombocytopenia, but many centers administer immunoglobulin G infusions to the pregnant woman. We studied the effect of maternal antenatal immunoglobulin infusions on fetal platelet counts in pregnancies with fetal alloimmune thrombocytopenia. Design and Methods We retrospectively analyzed the clinical courses of fetuses with fetal alloimmune thrombocytopenia whose mothers were treated with immunoglobulin G infusions in a single center between 1999 and 2005. In a center-specific protocol, weekly maternal immunoglobulin G infusions were given to 25 pregnant women with previously affected neonates and four women with strong platelet antibodies, but no previous history of fetal alloimmune thrombocytopenia; before each infusion diagnostic fetal blood sampling was performed to determine fetal platelet counts and immunoglobulin G levels. Results There were 30 fetuses with fetal alloimmune thrombocytopenia, confirmed by initial fetal blood sampling showing fetal platelet counts between 4×109/L and 130×109/L and antibody-coated fetal platelets using a glycoprotein specific assay. Despite weekly antenatal maternal immunoglobulin G infusions fetal platelet counts did not change significantly. Maternal and fetal immunoglobulin G levels, measured before every infusion, increased significantly with the number of maternal immunoglobulin G infusions. Conclusions In this group of fetuses with fetal alloimmune thrombocytopenia no consistent increase of fetal platelets was achieved as a result of regular maternal immunoglobulin G infusions. PMID:20534698

  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. 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

  4. Fetal syringomyelia.

    PubMed

    Guo, Anne; Chitayat, David; Blaser, Susan; Keating, Sarah; Shannon, Patrick

    2014-01-01

    We explored the prevalence of syringomyelia in a series of 113 cases of fetal dysraphism and hindbrain crowding, of gestational age ranging from 17.5 to 34 weeks with the vast majority less than 26 weeks gestational age. We found syringomyelia in 13 cases of Chiari II malformations, 5 cases of Omphalocele/Exostrophy/Imperforate anus/Spinal abnormality (OEIS), 2 cases of Meckel Gruber syndrome and in a single pair of pyopagus conjoined twins. Secondary injury was not uncommon, with vernicomyelia in Chiari malformations, infarct like histology, or old hemorrhage in 8 cases of syringomyelia. Vernicomyelia did not occur in the absence of syrinx formation. The syringes extended from the sites of dysraphism, in ascending or descending patterns. The syringes were usually in a major proportion anatomically distinct from a dilated or denuded central canal and tended to be dorsal and paramedian or median. We suggest that fetal syringomyelia in Chiari II malformation and other dysraphic states is often established prior to midgestation, has contributions from the primary malformation as well as from secondary in utero injury and is anatomically and pathophysiologically distinct from post natal syringomyelia secondary to hindbrain crowding. PMID:25092126

  5. 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

  6. Growth and development of the ovary and small follicle pool from mid fetal life to pre-puberty in the African elephant (Loxodonta africana)

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background Follicle numbers and developing ovarian morphology, particularly with reference to the presence of interstitial tissue, are intimately linked within the ovary of the African elephant during the period spanning mid-gestation to puberty. These have not been previously quantified in any studies. The collection of 7 sets of elephant fetal ovaries between 11.2 and 20.2 months of gestation, and 29 pairs of prepubertal calf ovaries between 2 months and 9 years of age during routine management off-takes of complete family groups in private conservancies in Zimbabwe provided an opportunity for a detailed study of this period. Results The changing morphology of the ovary is described as the presumptive cortex and medulla components of the fetal ovary settled into their adult form. Interstitial tissue dominated the ovary in late fetal life and these cells stained strongly for 3β–hydroxysteroid dehydrogenase. This staining continued postnatally through to 4.5 years of age suggesting continued secretion of progestagens by the ovary during this period. The considerable growth of antral follicles peaked at 28% of ovarian volume at around 16.7 months of fetal age. The numbers of small follicles (primordial, early primary and true primary), counted in the cortex using stereological protocols, revealed fewer small follicles in the ovaries of animals aged 0 to 4.5 years of age than during either late fetal life or prepubertal life. Conclusions The small follicle populations of the late-fetal and prepubertal ovaries of the African elephant were described along with the changing morphology of these organs. The changes noted represent a series of events that have been recorded only in the elephant and the giraffe species to date. The expansion of the interstitial tissue of the fetal ovary and its continued presence in early post natal life may well contribute to the control of follicle development in these early years. Further research is required to determine

  7. Effect of empty uterine space on birth intervals and fetal and placental development in pigs

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    A substantial loss of embryos occurs between d 30 and 40 of pregnancy in the pig under crowded intrauterine conditions, but it is not known whether this loss affects the growth of the remaining adjacent fetuses. Birth intervals are known to decrease with increasing litter size, but the factors causi...

  8. Humans at high altitude: hypoxia and fetal growth

    PubMed Central

    Moore, Lorna G.; Charles, Shelton M.; Julian, Colleen G.

    2011-01-01

    High-altitude studies offer insight into the evolutionary processes and physiological mechanisms affecting the early phases of the human lifespan. Chronic hypoxia slows fetal growth and reduces the pregnancy-associated rise in uterine artery (UA) blood flow. Multigenerational vs. shorter-term high-altitude residents are protected from the altitude-associated reductions in UA flow and fetal growth. Presently unknown is whether this fetal-growth protection is due to the greater delivery or metabolism of oxygen, glucose or other substrates or to other considerations such as mechanical factors protecting fragile fetal villi, the creation of a reserve protecting against ischemia/reperfusion injury, or improved placental O2 transfer as the result of narrowing the A-V O2 difference and raising uterine PvO2. Placental growth and development appear to be normal or modified at high altitude in ways likely to benefit diffusion. Much remains to be learned concerning the effects of chronic hypoxia on embryonic development. Further research is required for identifying the fetoplacental and maternal mechanisms responsible for transforming the maternal vasculature and regulating UA blood flow and fetal growth. Genomic as well as epigenetic studies are opening new avenues of investigation that can yield insights into the basic pathways and evolutionary processes involved. PMID:21536153

  9. Physiologic assessment of fetal compromise: biomarkers of toxic exposure

    SciTech Connect

    Longo, L.D.

    1987-10-01

    Understanding the physiologic and endocrinologic basis of fetal development is a major goal of perinatal biology. During the past decade a number of technological developments have allowed more precise evaluation of the fetus in utero and diagnosis of abnormalities. Despite these methodological achievements, however, there are no specific biological markers currently available to indicate that exposure to a given xenobiotic is associated with a cellular, subcellular, or pharmacodynamic event. This paper evaluates the following issues: what are some of the unique physiologic and endocrinologic features of the fetal milieu interieur. What problems are peculiar to fetal assessment. What are some examples of validated biomarkers and their applicability. What promising biomarkers are on the horizon. How may molecular probes be of value as biological markers of fetal compromise. What are some of the major research gaps and needs, and how should research priorities be set. Some of these topics are addressed. Moreover, the more general role(s) that various diagnostic methods and biological markers can have in an understanding of the regulation of fetal growth and differentiation and the role of xenobiotics in affecting the normal course of events are discussed.

  10. Influence of in utero di-n-hexyl phthalate and dicyclohexyl phthalate on fetal testicular development in rats.

    PubMed

    Aydoğan Ahbab, Müfide; Barlas, Nurhayat

    2015-03-01

    This study investigated the effects of di-n-hexyl phthalate (DHP) and dicyclohexyl phthalate (DCHP) on male reproductive development in utero. Pregnant rats were exposed to DHP and DCHP at doses of 0 (vehicle), 20, 100 and 500mg/kg/day, by gavage, on gestational days (GD) 6-19. A significant decrease in the anogenital distance (AGD) of male fetuses was observed at all doses of DHP and DCHP. The AGD/cube root of body weight ratio in male fetuses was also significantly reduced compared to control group. The litters with resorption, percentage of resorptions and inhibin B levels increased in treatment groups. Moreover, testosterone and MIS/AMH levels in all treatment groups decreased. Although FSH and inhibin B levels of male pups exposed to DHP and DCHP increased, FSH/inhibin B ratio decreased in treatment groups. Reduced testosterone production in response to DHP and DCHP exposure appeared to be related to changes in testosterone metabolism, as shown by decreased 3β-HSD immunoexpression. The percentages of large Leydig clusters increased after exposure to DHP and DCHP in utero. Histopathological examination of the testis on GD20 revealed changes at all doses. Relative integrated immunodensities of 3β-HSD, MIS/AMH, PCNA and AR decreased after DHP and DCHP exposures. Altered fetal Sertoli cell development and function may be caused by disrupted PMC function revealed by reduced AR production in these cells in treatment groups. PMID:25637754

  11. Changes in fetal ovine metabolism and oxygen delivery with fetal bypass.

    PubMed

    Lam, Christopher T; Baker, R Scott; Clark, Kenneth E; Eghtesady, Pirooz

    2011-07-01

    Since the 1980s, attempts at experimental fetal cardiac bypass for the purpose of correcting severe congenital heart defects in the womb have been hampered by deterioration of placental function. This placental pathophysiology in turn affects transplacental transport of nutrients and gas exchange. To date, the effects of bypass on fetal metabolism and oxygen delivery have not been studied. Nine Suffolk sheep fetuses from 109-121 days gestation were instrumented and placed on fetal bypass for 30 min and followed postbypass for 2 h. Blood gases, glucose, and lactate were serially measured in the fetal arterial and umbilical venous circulations throughout the procedure. Insulin and glucagon levels were serially measured by immunoassay in fetal plasma. Fetal-placental hemodynamics were measured continuously. The expression of glycogen content was examined in fetal liver. Oxygen delivery to the fetus and fetal oxygen consumption were significantly deranged after the conduct of bypass (in-group ANOVA (P = 0.001) and overall contrast (P = 0.072) with planned contrast (P < 0.05) for delivery and consumption, respectively). There were significant alterations in fetal glucose metabolism in the postbypass period; however, insulin and glucagon levels did not change. Fetal liver glycogen content appeared lower after bypass. This is the first report documenting fetal metabolic dysregulation that occurs in response to the conduct of fetal bypass. The significant alterations in fetal oxygen and glucose delivery coupled with hepatic glycogen depletion complicate and impede fetal recovery. These initial findings warrant further investigation of interventions to restore metabolic and hemodynamic homeostasis after fetal bypass. PMID:21508289

  12. Antenatal Glucocorticoid Treatment Affects Hippocampal Development in Mice

    PubMed Central

    Noorlander, Cornelle W.; Tijsseling, Deodata; Hessel, Ellen V. S.; de Vries, Willem B.; Derks, Jan B.

    2014-01-01

    Synthetic glucocorticoids are administered to pregnant women at risk for preterm delivery, to enhance fetal lung maturation. The benefit of this treatment is well established, however caution is necessary because of possible unwanted side effects on development of different organ systems, including the brain. Actions of glucocorticoids are mediated by corticosteroid receptors, which are highly expressed in the hippocampus, a brain structure involved in cognitive functions. Therefore, we analyzed the effects of a single antenatal dexamethasone treatment on the development of the mouse hippocampus. A clinically relevant dose of dexamethasone (0.4 mg/kg) was administered to pregnant mice at embryonic day 15.5 and the hippocampus was analyzed from embryonic day 16 until adulthood. We investigated the effects of dexamethasone treatment on anatomical changes, apoptosis and proliferation in the hippocampus, hippocampal volume and on total body weight. Our results show that dexamethasone treatment reduced body weight and hippocampal volume transiently during development, but these effects were no longer detected at adulthood. Dexamethasone treatment increased the number of apoptotic cells in the hippocampus until birth, but postnatally no effects of dexamethasone treatment on apoptosis were found. During the phase with increased apoptosis, dexamethasone treatment reduced the number of proliferating cells in the subgranular zone of the dentate gyrus. The number of proliferative cells was increased at postnatal day 5 and 10, but was decreased again at the adult stage. This latter long-term and negative effect of antenatal dexamethasone treatment on the number of proliferative cells in the hippocampus may have important implications for hippocampal network function. PMID:24465645

  13. Diet reduction to requirements in obese/overfed ewes from early gestation prevents glucose/insulin dysregulation and returns fetal adiposity and organ development to control levels.

    PubMed

    Tuersunjiang, Nuermaimaiti; Odhiambo, John F; Long, Nathan M; Shasa, Desiree R; Nathanielsz, Peter W; Ford, Stephen P

    2013-10-01

    Obesity at conception and excess gestational weight gain pose significant risks for adverse health consequences in human offspring. This study evaluated the effects of reducing dietary intake of obese/overfed ewes beginning in early gestation on fetal development. Sixty days prior to conception, ewes were assigned to a control diet [CON: 100% of National Research Council (NRC) recommendations], a diet inducing maternal obesity (MO: 150% of NRC recommendations), or a maternal obesity intervention diet (MOI: 150% of NRC recommendations to day 28 of gestation, then 100% NRC) until necropsy at midgestation (day 75) or late (day 135) gestation. Fetal size and weight, as well as fetal organ weights, were greater (P < 0.05) at midgestation in MO ewes than those of CON and MOI ewes. By late gestation, whereas fetal size and weight did not differ among dietary groups, cardiac ventricular weights and wall thicknesses as well as liver and perirenal fat weights remained elevated in fetuses from MO ewes compared with those from CON and MOI ewes. MO ewes and fetuses exhibited elevated (P < 0.05) plasma concentrations of triglycerides, cholesterol, insulin, glucose, and cortisol at midgestation compared with CON and MOI ewes and fetuses. In late gestation, whereas plasma triglycerides and cholesterol, insulin, and cortisol remained elevated in MO vs. CON and MOI ewes and fetuses, glucose concentrations were elevated in both MO and MOI fetuses compared with CON fetuses, which was associated with elevated placental GLUT3 expression in both groups. These data are consistent with the concept that reducing maternal diet of obese/overfed ewes to requirements from early gestation can prevent subsequent alterations in fetal growth, adiposity, and glucose/insulin dynamics. PMID:23921140

  14. Effects of lead exposure before pregnancy and dietary calcium during pregnancy on fetal development and lead accumulation.

    PubMed Central

    Han, S; Pfizenmaier, D H; Garcia, E; Eguez, M L; Ling, M; Kemp, F W; Bogden, J D

    2000-01-01

    Millions of women of child-bearing age have substantial bone lead stores due to lead exposure as children. Dietary calcium ingested simultaneously with lead exposure can reduce lead absorption and accumulation. However, the effects of dietary calcium on previously accumulated maternal lead stores and transfer to the fetus have not been investigated. We studied the effects of lead exposure of female rats at an early age on fetal development during a subsequent pregnancy. We gave 5-week-old female Sprague-Dawley rats lead as the acetate in their drinking water for 5 weeks; controls received equimolar sodium acetate. This was followed by a 1-month period without lead exposure before mating. We randomly assigned pregnant rats (n = 39) to diets with a deficient (0.1%) or normal (0.5%) calcium content during pregnancy. A total of 345 pups were delivered alive. Lead-exposed dams and their pups had significantly higher blood lead concentrations than controls, but the concentrations were in the range of those found in many pregnant women. Pups born to dams fed the calcium-deficient diet during pregnancy had higher blood and organ lead concentrations than pups born to dams fed the 0. 5% calcium diet. Pups born to lead-exposed dams had significantly (p<0.0001) lower mean birth weights and birth lengths than controls. There were significant inverse univariate associations between dam or pup organ lead concentrations and birth weight or length. The 0.5% calcium diet did not increase in utero growth. Stepwise regression analysis demonstrated that greater litter size and female sex were significantly associated with reduced pup birth weight and length. However, lead exposure that ended well before pregnancy was significantly (p<0.0001) associated with reduced birth weight and length, even after litter size, pup sex, and dam weight gain during pregnancy were included in the regression analysis. The data demonstrate that an increase in dietary calcium during pregnancy can reduce

  15. 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.

  16. [Morphology and development of the veins of the uterus in cattle during the fetal and neonatal periods].

    PubMed

    Wyrost, P; Molenda, O; Radek, J; Radek, T

    1990-03-01

    A total of 101 specimens were used; they came from 89 fetuses (4th to 40th week of gestation) and 12 neonates (1 to 14 days old). The age of the fetuses was determined according to the method of Kantorova (1960). The uterine veins were filled with latex using an automatic injection apparatus of our own construction. The study showed that blood left the uterus of the examined animals through constantly present veins (Ramus uterinus venae ovaricae, V. uterina and Ramus uterinus venae vaginalis) as well as through a number of inconstant veins to which belonged the Vv. vaginales accessoriae craniales et caudales. The constant uterine veins and their branches differed from their adult counterparts by being morphologically more differentiated, especially by having more branches of which some disappeared with time. The uterine veins developed toward the end of the fetal period. They arose either from the most caudal Vv. mesonephridicae lumbales (V. ovarica and its branches), or from the segmental, visceral veins of the pelvis (V. uterina and Vv. vaginales). PMID:2375507

  17. 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

  18. 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.

  19. Elevated fetal steroidogenic activity in autism.

    PubMed

    Baron-Cohen, S; Auyeung, B; Nørgaard-Pedersen, B; Hougaard, D M; Abdallah, M W; Melgaard, L; Cohen, A S; Chakrabarti, B; Ruta, L; Lombardo, M V

    2015-03-01

    Autism affects males more than females, giving rise to the idea that the influence of steroid hormones on early fetal brain development may be one important early biological risk factor. Utilizing the Danish Historic Birth Cohort and Danish Psychiatric Central Register, we identified all amniotic fluid samples of males born between 1993 and 1999 who later received ICD-10 (International Classification of Diseases, 10th Revision) diagnoses of autism, Asperger syndrome or PDD-NOS (pervasive developmental disorder not otherwise specified) (n=128) compared with matched typically developing controls. Concentration levels of Δ4 sex steroids (progesterone, 17α-hydroxy-progesterone, androstenedione and testosterone) and cortisol were measured with liquid chromatography tandem mass spectrometry. All hormones were positively associated with each other and principal component analysis confirmed that one generalized latent steroidogenic factor was driving much of the variation in the data. The autism group showed elevations across all hormones on this latent generalized steroidogenic factor (Cohen's d=0.37, P=0.0009) and this elevation was uniform across ICD-10 diagnostic label. These results provide the first direct evidence of elevated fetal steroidogenic activity in autism. Such elevations may be important as epigenetic fetal programming mechanisms and may interact with other important pathophysiological factors in autism. PMID:24888361

  20. 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.

  1. Genomic Effect of Triclosan on the Fetal Hypothalamus: Evidence for Altered Neuropeptide Regulation.

    PubMed

    Rabaglino, Maria Belen; Chang, Eileen I; Richards, Elaine M; James, Margaret O; Keller-Wood, Maureen; Wood, Charles E

    2016-07-01

    Triclosan (TCS), an antibacterial compound commonly added to personal care products, could be an endocrine disruptor at low doses. Although TCS has been shown to alter fetal physiology, its effects in the developing fetal brain are unknown. We hypothesize that exposure to TCS during fetal life could affect fetal hypothalamic gene expression. The objective of this study was to use transcriptomics and systems analysis to identify significantly altered biological processes in the late gestation ovine fetal hypothalamus after direct or indirect exposure to low doses of TCS. For direct TCS exposure, chronically catheterized late gestation fetal sheep were infused with vehicle (n = 4) or TCS (250 μg/d; n = 4) iv. For indirect TCS exposure, TCS (100 μg/kg · d; n = 3) or vehicle (n = 3) was infused into the maternal circulation. Fetal hypothalami were collected after 2 days of infusion, and gene expression was measured through microarray. Hierarchical clustering of all samples according to gene expression profiles showed that samples from the TCS-treated animals clustered apart from the controls. Gene set enrichment analysis revealed that fetal hypothalamic genes stimulated by maternal and fetal TCS infusion were significantly enriching for cell cycle, reproductive process, and feeding behavior, whereas the inhibited genes were significantly enriching for chromatin modification and metabolism of steroids, lipoproteins, fatty acids, and glucose (P < .05). In conclusion, short-term infusion of TCS induces vigorous changes in the fetal hypothalamic transcriptomics, which are mainly related to food intake pathways and metabolism. If these changes persist to postnatal life, they could result in adverse consequences in adulthood. PMID:27145008

  2. A neurodevelopmental framework for the development of interventions for children with fetal alcohol spectrum disorders

    PubMed Central

    Kodituwakku, Piyadasa W.

    2009-01-01

    Despite considerable data published on cognitive and behavioral disabilities in children with FASD, relatively little information is available on behavioral or pharmacological interventions for alcohol affected children. The main goals of this paper, therefore, are to summarize published intervention studies of FASD and to present a neurodevelopmental framework, based on recent findings from a number of disciplines, for designing new therapies for alcohol affected children. This framework assumes a neuroconstructionist view, which posits that reciprocal interactions between neural activity and the brain's hardware lead to the progressive formation of intra and inter-regional neural connections. In this view, behavioral interventions can be conceptualized as a series of guided experiences that are designed to produce neural activation. Based on evidence from cognitive neuroscience, it is hypothesized that specific interventions targeting executive attention and self-regulation may produce greater generalizable results than those aimed at domain specific skills in children with FASD. In view of reciprocal interactions between environmental effects and neural structures, the proposed framework suggests that the maximum effects of interventions can eventually be achieved by optimally combining behavioral methods and cognition enhancing drugs. PMID:20036485

  3. Quercetin Partially Preserves Development of Osteoblast Phenotype in Fetal Rat Calvaria Cells in an Oxidative Stress Environment.

    PubMed

    Messer, Jonathan G; La, Stephanie; Hopkins, Robin G; Kipp, Deborah E

    2016-12-01

    Studies are needed to improve understanding of the osteoblast antioxidant response, and the balance between oxidative homeostasis and osteoblast differentiation. The flavonol quercetin aglycone (QRC) up-regulates the osteoblast antioxidant response in vitro without suppressing osteoblast phenotype, suggesting that QRC may preserve osteoblast phenotypic development in cells subsequently exposed to oxidative stress, which suppresses osteoblast differentiation. The aims of this study were to assess the extent that QRC pretreatment preserved development of the osteoblast phenotype in cells subsequently cultured with hydrogen peroxide, an oxidative stressor, and to characterize alterations in the osteoblast antioxidant response and in key antioxidant signaling pathways. We hypothesized that pretreatment with QRC would preserve phenotypic development after hydrogen peroxide treatment, suppress the hydrogen peroxide-induced antioxidant response, and that the antioxidant response would involve alterations in Nrf2 and ERK1/2 signaling. Results showed that treating fetal rat calvarial osteoblasts for 4 days (D5-9) with 300 μM hydrogen peroxide resulted in fewer alkaline phosphatase-positive cells and mineralized nodules, altered cell morphology, and significantly lower osteoblast phenotypic gene expression (P < 0.05). This suppression was partially blocked when cells were pretreated 12 h with 20 μM QRC. Hydrogen peroxide also produced sustained up-regulation of heme oxygenase-1 (HO-1) and γ-glutamate cysteine ligase catalytic subunit (GCLC), which was partially blocked in hydrogen peroxide-treated cells that first received QRC pretreatment. The alterations in the antioxidant stress response coincided with alterations in phosphorylated ERK1/2, but not Nrf2. These results suggest that QRC suppresses hydrogen peroxide-induced activation of the antioxidant response, and partially preserves osteoblast phenotypic development. J. Cell. Physiol. 231: 2779-2788, 2016.

  4. Development affects in vitro vascular tone and calcium sensitivity in ovine cerebral arteries

    PubMed Central

    Geary, Greg G; Osol, George J; Longo, Lawrence D

    2004-01-01

    We have shown recently that development from neonatal to adult life affects cerebrovascular tone of mouse cerebral arteries through endothelium-derived vasodilatory mechanisms. The current study tested the hypothesis that development from fetal to adult life affects cerebral artery vascular smooth muscle (VSM) [Ca2+]i sensitivity and tone through a mechanism partially dependent upon endothelium-dependent signalling. In pressurized resistance sized cerebral arteries (∼150 μm) from preterm (95 ± 2 days gestation (95 d)) and near-term (140 ± 2 days gestation (140 d)) fetuses, and non-pregnant adults, we measured vascular diameter (μm) and [Ca2+]i (nm) as a function of intravascular pressure. We repeated these studies in the presence of inhibition of nitric oxide synthase (NOS; with l-NAME), cyclo-oxygenase (COX; with indomethacin) and endothelium removal (E–). Cerebrovasculature tone (E+) was greater in arteries from 95 d fetuses and adults compared to 140 d sheep. Ca2+ sensitivity was similar in 95 d fetuses and adults, but much lower in 140 d fetuses. Removal of endothelium resulted in a reduction in lumen diameter as a function of pressure (greater tone) in all treatment groups. [Ca2+]i sensitivity differences among groups were magnified after E–. NOS inhibition decreased diameter as a function of pressure in each age group, with a significant increase in [Ca2+]i to pressure ratio only in the 140 d fetuses. Indomethacin increased tone and increased [Ca2+]i in the 140 d fetuses, but not the other age groups. Development from near-term to adulthood uncovered an interaction between NOS- and COX-sensitive substances that functioned to modulate artery diameter but not [Ca2+]i. This study suggests that development is associated with significant alterations in cerebral vascular smooth muscle (VSM), endothelium, NOS and COX responses to intravascular pressure. We speculate that these changes have important implications in the regulation of cerebral blood flow in

  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. PMID:26482673

  6. 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

  7. Fetal programming of polycystic ovary syndrome.

    PubMed

    Gur, Esra Bahar; Karadeniz, Muammer; Turan, Guluzar Arzu

    2015-07-10

    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

  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. Assessment of placental transfer and the effect on embryo-fetal development of a humanized monoclonal antibody targeting lymphotoxin-alpha in non-human primates.

    PubMed

    Wang, Hong; Schuetz, Chris; Arima, Akihiro; Chihaya, Yutaka; Weinbauer, Gerhard F; Habermann, Gunnar; Xiao, Jim; Woods, Cynthia; Grogan, Jane; Gelzleichter, Thomas; Cain, Gary

    2016-08-01

    An enhanced embryo-fetal development study was conducted in cynomolgus monkeys using pateclizumab, a humanized IgG1 monoclonal antibody (mAb) targeting lymphotoxin-alpha. Pateclizumab administration between gestation days (GD) 20 and 132 did not induce maternal or developmental toxicities. The ratio of fetal-to-maternal serum concentration of pateclizumab was 0.73% on GD 50 and 61% by GD 139. Decreased fetal inguinal lymph node-to-body weight ratio was present in the high-dose group without microscopic abnormalities, a change attributable to inhibition of lymphocyte recruitment, which is a pharmacologic effect of pateclizumab during late lymph node development. The effect was observed in inguinal but not submandibular or mesenteric lymph nodes; this was attributed to differential susceptibility related to sequential lymph node development. Placental transfer of therapeutic IgG1 antibodies; thus, begins during the first trimester in non-human primates. Depending on the potency and dose levels administered, antibody levels in the fetus may be pharmacologically or toxicologically relevant. PMID:27211603

  10. MicroRNA profiles of the fetal pig during skeletal muscle development

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    MicroRNA (miR) are a class of small RNAs that regulate gene expression by inhibiting translation of protein encoding transcripts through activation of a specific cellular pathway. Recently, miR have been reported to regulate multiple cellular processes of skeletal muscle development and growth incl...

  11. Development of methods for characterizing fetal and adult somatic mutations detected in human erythroid precursor

    SciTech Connect

    Langlois, R.G.; Manchester, D.K.

    1994-12-31

    The glycophorin A (GPA) assay was developed to quantify somatic mutations in humans by measuring the frequency of peripheral erythrocytes with mutant phenotypes that are presumed to be progeny of mutated erythroid precursor cells. This assay has been used to identify GPA variant cells in unexposed individuals at a frequency of {approximately}10 per million erythrocytes, and to demonstrate significant increases in variant frequency after mutagenic exposures. Characterization of the mutations responsible for these variant cells requires that the assay be modified to allow flow analysis and sorting of variant erythroid precursor cells that contain nucleic acids. Cord blood samples contain low levels of both reticulocytes and nucleated erythrocytes. We have developed enrichment methods using centrifugation that yield samples containing up to 30% nucleated erythrocytes, and immunomagnetic separation methods that yield samples containing up to 90% reticulocytes. Enrichment methods for these two cell types are also being developed for adult bone marrow samples. We have confirmed that enrichment and labeling with a nucleic acid-specific dye are compatible with GPA analysis of erythrocytes, reticulocytes, and nucleated erythrocytes. Enriched samples have been successfully used for flow cytometric detection of GPA variant reticulocytes in cord blood. PCR-based analysis methods are being developed for molecular characterization of sorted variant cells at the mRNA level.

  12. Development and psychometric validation of the verbal affective memory test.

    PubMed

    Jensen, Christian G; Hjordt, Liv V; Stenbæk, Dea S; Andersen, Emil; Back, Silja K; Lansner, Jon; Hageman, Ida; Dam, Henrik; Nielsen, Anna P; Knudsen, Gitte M; Frokjaer, Vibe G; Hasselbalch, Steen G

    2016-10-01

    We here present the development and validation of the Verbal Affective Memory Test-24 (VAMT-24). First, we ensured face validity by selecting 24 words reliably perceived as positive, negative or neutral, respectively, according to healthy Danish adults' valence ratings of 210 common and non-taboo words. Second, we studied the test's psychometric properties in healthy adults. Finally, we investigated whether individuals diagnosed with Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) differed from healthy controls on seasonal changes in affective recall. Recall rates were internally consistent and reliable and converged satisfactorily with established non-affective verbal tests. Immediate recall (IMR) for positive words exceeded IMR for negative words in the healthy sample. Relatedly, individuals with SAD showed a significantly larger decrease in positive recall from summer to winter than healthy controls. Furthermore, larger seasonal decreases in positive recall significantly predicted larger increases in depressive symptoms. Retest reliability was satisfactory, rs ≥ .77. In conclusion, VAMT-24 is more thoroughly developed and validated than existing verbal affective memory tests and showed satisfactory psychometric properties. VAMT-24 seems especially sensitive to measuring positive verbal recall bias, perhaps due to the application of common, non-taboo words. Based on the psychometric and clinical results, we recommend VAMT-24 for international translations and studies of affective memory. PMID:26401886

  13. Gestational dexamethasone alters fetal neuroendocrine axis.

    PubMed

    Ahmed, R G

    2016-09-01

    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. PMID:27220267

  14. Female mouse fetal loss mediated by maternal autoantibody.

    PubMed

    Wang, Li; Zhou, Dun; Lee, Ji; Niu, Haitao; Faust, Thomas W; Frattini, Stephen; Kowal, Czeslawa; Huerta, Patricio T; Volpe, Bruce T; Diamond, Betty

    2012-06-01

    Systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE), a disease of women during childbearing years, is characterized by the production of double-stranded DNA antibodies. A subset of these antibodies, present in 40% of patients, cross-reacts with the NR2A and NR2B subunits of the N-methyl-d-aspartate receptor (NMDAR). In this study, we show that, in mouse models, these antibodies cause a loss of female fetus viability by inducing apoptosis of NR2A-expressing neurons within the brainstem late in fetal development; gender specificity derives from a time-dependent increased expression of NR2A in female brainstem or increased vulnerability of female fetal neurons to signaling through NR2A-containing NMDARs. This paradigm is consistent with available data on the sex ratio of live births of women with SLE. It represents a novel mechanism by which maternal autoantibodies can severely affect fetal health in a gender-specific fashion and raises the question of how many maternal antibodies affect brain development or exhibit gender-specific fetal effects. PMID:22565825

  15. Placental Responses to Changes in the Maternal Environment Determine Fetal Growth

    PubMed Central

    Dimasuay, Kris Genelyn; Boeuf, Philippe; Powell, Theresa L.; Jansson, Thomas

    2016-01-01

    Placental responses to maternal perturbations are complex and remain poorly understood. Altered maternal environment during pregnancy such as hypoxia, stress, obesity, diabetes, toxins, altered nutrition, inflammation, and reduced utero-placental blood flow may influence fetal development, which can predispose to diseases later in life. The placenta being a metabolically active tissue responds to these perturbations by regulating the fetal supply of nutrients and oxygen and secretion of hormones into the maternal and fetal circulation. We have proposed that placental nutrient sensing integrates maternal and fetal nutritional cues with information from intrinsic nutrient sensing signaling pathways to balance fetal demand with the ability of the mother to support pregnancy by regulating maternal physiology, placental growth, and placental nutrient transport. Emerging evidence suggests that the nutrient-sensing signaling pathway mechanistic target of rapamycin (mTOR) plays a central role in this process. Thus, placental nutrient sensing plays a critical role in modulating maternal–fetal resource allocation, thereby affecting fetal growth and the life-long health of the fetus. PMID:26858656

  16. [Does the administration of derivatives of vitamin D to dairy cows in late pregnancy for the prevention of parturient paresis affect the maternal-fetal mineral metabolism?].

    PubMed

    Zepperitz, H; Grün, E

    1993-06-01

    Intramuscular injection of 1 alpha-hydroxyvitamin D3 (with or without 25-hydroxyvitamin D3) to highly pregnant dairy cows caused a significant increase of ionized calcium in blood and of total calcium and inorganic phosphate with a concomitant decrease of magnesium in blood plasma 3,5 +/- 1,9 days later (resp. 12-48 h a.p.). This brought about a higher Ca level at parturition preventing parturient paresis. The changes of maternal mineral and vitamin D status had no effect on the mineral concentrations of blood in newborn calves. However, the increase in calcium and phosphate concentrations in maternal blood after injection was accompanied by an increase of the minerals in the amniotic fluid reflecting their strong reciprocal exchange. On the other hand, the composition of allantoic fluid showed no significant changes. Therefore, analysis of both fetal fluids does not refer to disorders of fetal mineral metabolism. As a consequence, there seems to be no potential risk of intoxication after a prepartal injection of the substances to the mother for their offspring. PMID:8343105

  17. 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

  18. Development of epithelial and mesenchymal regionalization of the human fetal utero-vaginal anlagen

    PubMed Central

    Fritsch, Helga; Hoermann, Romed; Bitsche, Mario; Pechriggl, Elisabeth; Reich, Olaf

    2013-01-01

    Literature on the development of the human vagina is abundant; however, contributions concerning the prenatal development of the entire utero-vaginal anlagen (UVA) are rare or carried out in rodents. The primary epithelial characteristics in the adult vagina and uterus are determined during prenatal development and depend on epithelio-mesenchymal stroma interaction; thus an investigation summarizing the spatiotemporal distribution of relevant molecular markers in the entire human UVA will be of current interest. We phenotyped epithelial and mesenchymal characteristics in sagittal sections from 24 female fetuses of 14–34 weeks of gestation and two female newborns by immunostaining with cytokeratins 8, 13, 14 and 17, p63, bcl-2, bmp4, HOX A13, CD31, VEGF, SMA, Pax2 and vimentin. Epithelial differentiation followed a caudal-to-cranial direction in the UVA. Due to the cytokeratin profile of cytokeratins 8, 13 and 14, the characteristics of the different epithelial zones in the UVA could already be recognized in middle-age fetuses. Vaginal epithelium originated from the urogenital sinus in the lower portion and initiated the transformation of vimentin-positive Müllerian epithelium in the upper vaginal portion. During prenatal development the original squamo-columnar junction was clearly detectable from week 24 onwards and was always found in the cervical canal. Early blc-2 positivity within the surrounding mesenchyme of the entire vagina including the portio region pointed to an organ-specific mesenchymal influence. Prenatal findings in human specimens clearly show that fornix epithelium up to the squamo-columnar junction is of vaginal Müllerian origin, and the cervical epithelium cranial to the squamo-columnar junction is of uterine Müllerian origin and includes cells with enough plasticity to transform into squamous epithelium. PMID:23406280

  19. Greater rhea (Rhea americana) external morphology at different stages of embryonic and fetal development.

    PubMed

    de Almeida, Hatawa Melo; Sousa, Renata Patrícia; Bezerra, Dayseanny Oliveira; Olivindo, Rodrigo Fernando Gomes; das Neves Diniz, Anaemilia; de Oliveira, Sâmia Clara; Feitosa, Matheus Levi Tajra; de Moura Fortes, Eunice Anita; Ferraz, Maíra Soares; de Carvalho, Yulla Klinger Pereira; de Menezes, Danilo José Ayres; de Carvalho, Maria Acelina Martins

    2015-11-01

    Knowledge of wild species embryonic development is important for their maintenance in captivity or the wild. The objective of the present study was to characterize the external morphology and define the biometry of greater rhea embryos and fetuses at different stages of development. A total of 41 embryos and fetuses were analyzed to describe their external morphology using a stereoscopic microscope. The crown-rump (CR), total length (TL), cephalocaudal length (CCL), biparietal diameter (BPD), beak, humerus and tibio-tarsal lengths were measured by digital pachymeter, millimetric scale ruler and cotton thread. The weight of the embryos and fetuses was measured on digital scales. The greater rhea embryos at 5, 6 and 7 days incubation presented a "C" shape. At 9, 10 and 11 days the eyes were big and pigmented. At 11, 12 and 13 days the eyelid covered more than half the eye, resulting in an oval slit. In 14 and 15 day-old embryos, the skin was still thin and the ribs evident, but at 18 days this structure was thicker. In embryos at 21 and 27 days of development closed eyelids were observed forming an eyelid slit, and the eye ball was less pronounced at 27 days. Weight gain presented an exponential growth curve, while measurements such as TL, DBP, beak, humerus and tibio-tarsal length had linear growth over time. Thus it was possible to characterize the greater rhea embryos and fetuses at several incubation ages using their external morphology and morphometric analyses. PMID:26432389

  20. 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. PMID:26762485

  1. Fetal movements as a predictor of health.

    PubMed

    Lai, Jonathan; Nowlan, Niamh C; Vaidyanathan, Ravi; Shaw, Caroline J; Lees, Christoph C

    2016-09-01

    The key determinant to a fetus maintaining its health is through adequate perfusion and oxygen transfer mediated by the functioning placenta. When this equilibrium is distorted, a number of physiological changes, including reduced fetal growth, occur to favor survival. Technologies have been developed to monitor these changes with a view to prolong intrauterine maturity while reducing the risks of stillbirth. Many of these strategies involve complex interpretation, for example Doppler ultrasound for fetal blood flow and computerized analysis of fetal heart rate changes. However, even with these modalities of fetal assessment to determine the optimal timing of delivery, fetal movements remain integral to clinical decision-making. In high-risk cohorts with fetal growth restriction, the manifestation of a reduction in perceived movements may warrant an expedited delivery. Despite this, there has been little evolution in the development of technologies to objectively evaluate fetal movement behavior for clinical application. This review explores the available literature on the value of fetal movement analysis as a method of assessing fetal wellbeing, and demonstrates how interdisciplinary developments in this area may aid in the improvement of clinical outcomes. PMID:27374723

  2. Spontaneous muscle action potentials fail to develop without fetal-type acetylcholine receptors

    PubMed Central

    Takahashi, Masazumi; Kubo, Tai; Mizoguchi, Akira; Carlson, C. George; Endo, Katsuaki; Ohnishi, Katsunori

    2002-01-01

    In mammals, two combinations of muscle nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (AChRs) are used: α2βγδ (γ-AChR) or α2βɛδ (ɛ-AChR). After birth, γ-AChRs are replaced by ɛ-AChRs (γ/ɛ-switch). The two receptors have different conductances and open times. During perinatal period, the long open time γ-AChRs generate random myofiber action potentials from uniquantal miniature end-plate potentials (mEPPs). ɛ-AChRs are suitable for strong adult muscle activities. Since the effect of the γ/ɛ-switch on neuromuscular development was unclear, despite the many differences in channel characteristics, we carried out this study to generate γ-subunit-deficient mice. Homozygotes born alive survived for 2 days in a stable condition, and were able to move their forelimbs. Endplate AChRs included ɛ-subunits, and muscle fibers had multiple neuromuscular junctions. Both pre- and postsynapses were abnormal and spontaneous action potentials generated from mEPPs were totally absent. Results suggest a requirement for γ-AChRs in mediating synaptically-induced action potential activity critical for neuromuscular development. PMID:12101101

  3. Development of Blood and Lymphatic Endothelial Cells in Embryonic and Fetal Human Skin.

    PubMed

    Schuster, Christopher; Mildner, Michael; Botta, Albert; Nemec, Lucas; Rogojanu, Radu; Beer, Lucian; Fiala, Christian; Eppel, Wolfgang; Bauer, Wolfgang; Petzelbauer, Peter; Elbe-Bürger, Adelheid

    2015-09-01

    Blood and lymphatic vessels provide nutrients for the skin and fulfill important homeostatic functions, such as the regulation of immunologic processes. In this study, we investigated the development of blood and lymphatic endothelial cells in prenatal human skin in situ using multicolor immunofluorescence and analyzed angiogenic molecules by protein arrays of lysates and cell culture supernatants. We found that at 8 to 10 weeks of estimated gestational age, CD144(+) vessels predominantly express the venous endothelial cell marker PAL-E, whereas CD144(+)PAL-E(-) vessels compatible with arteries only appear at the end of the first trimester. Lymphatic progenitor cells at 8 weeks of estimated gestational age express CD31, CD144, Prox1, and temporary PAL-E. At that developmental stage not all lymphatic progenitor cells express podoplanin or Lyve-1, which are acquired with advancing gestational age in a stepwise fashion. Already in second-trimester human skin, the phenotype of blood and lymphatic vessels roughly resembles the one in adult skin. The expression pattern of angiogenic molecules in lysates and cell culture supernatants of prenatal skin did not reveal the expected bent to proangiogenic molecules, indicating a complex regulation of angiogenesis during ontogeny. In summary, this study provides enticing new insights into the development and phenotypic characteristics of the vascular system in human prenatal skin. PMID:26188132

  4. 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...

  5. 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…

  6. Fetal and maternal manifestations of tuberous sclerosis complex: Value of fetal MRI.

    PubMed

    Goel, Reema; Aggarwal, Nishant; Lemmon, Monica E; Bosemani, Thangamadhan

    2016-02-01

    Tuberous sclerosis complex (TSC) is a genetic disorder characterized by benign hamartomas in various organ systems of the body. Prenatal screening of fetuses of mothers affected with TSC using ultrasonography (US) may detect cardiac lesions. Fetal US is not sensitive for evaluation of the brain. We describe brain MRI findings in a fetus with cardiac rhabdomyomas identified on prenatal screening US. Postnatal brain MRI at 5 days of age demonstrated fetal MRI findings without significant added information. Fetal MRI is the imaging modality of choice for evaluation of cerebral manifestations of TSC. Maternal manifestations of TSC in the abdomen or pelvis may also be demonstrated on fetal MRI. PMID:26838171

  7. Development and validation of the Affective Self Rating Scale for manic, depressive, and mixed affective states.

    PubMed

    Adler, Mats; Liberg, Benny; Andersson, Stig; Isacsson, Göran; Hetta, Jerker

    2008-01-01

    Most rating scales for affective disorders measure either depressive or hypomanic/manic symptoms and there are few scales for hypomania/mania in a self-rating format. We wanted to develop and validate a self-rating scale for comprehensive assessment of depressive, manic/hypomanic and mixed affective states. We developed an 18-item self-rating scale starting with the DSM-IV criteria for depression and mania, with subscales for depression and mania. The scale was evaluated on 61 patients with a diagnosis of affective disorder, predominantly bipolar disorder type I, using Montgomery-Asberg Depression Rating Scale (MADRS), Hypomania Interview Guide-Clinical version (HIGH-C) and Clinical Global Impression scale, modified for bipolar patients (CGI-BP) as reference scales. Internal consistency of the scale measured by Cronbach's alpha was 0.89 for the depression subscale and 0.91 for the mania subscale. Spearman's correlation coefficients (two-tailed) between the depression subscale and MADRS was 0.74 (P<0.01) and between mania subscale and HIGH-C 0.80 (P<0.01). A rotated factor analysis of the scale supported the separation of symptoms in the mania and depression subscale. We established that the self-rating scales sensitivity to identify mixed states, with combined cut-offs on the MADRS and HIGH-C as reference, was 0.90 with a specificity of 0.71. The study shows that the Affective Self Rating Scale is highly correlated with ratings of established interview scales for depression and mania and that it may aid the detection of mixed affective states. PMID:18569776

  8. [Possibility of predicting intrauterine fetal growth retardation by a single ultrasonic examination (using varying standards)].

    PubMed

    Fedorova, M V; Kotov, Iu B; Lukashenko, S Iu; Alekseevskiĭ, A V; Dub, N V; Sichinava, L G; Novikova, S V; Klimenko, P A

    1991-05-01

    The paper deals with early prediction of fetal growth retardation and its severity in a newborn from single ultrasound fetal biometric findings (biparietal head size, chest and belly diameters) at week 20 of pregnancy. The prediction was made by employing the developed varying standards for these parameters as percentile curves and tables. A stepwise prediction of fetal growth retardation was proposed for obstetric in- and outpatient settings, which was presented as an IBM personal computer dialogue program. The positive diagnostic value of fetal growth retardation prediction was found to be 69.7%, its negative value was 86.9%. The paper discusses whether therapeutic measures and pregnancy length affect the efficiency of its prediction and stresses that the prediction is valuable for individual well-grounded tactics for pregnancy management. PMID:1897665

  9. Anesthesia for fetal surgery.

    PubMed

    Cauldwell, Charles B

    2002-03-01

    Fetal surgery is the antenatal treatment of fetal malformations that cannot be adequately corrected after birth. Anesthesia for fetal surgery involves two patients, and issues of maternal safety, avoidance of fetal asphyxia, adequate fetal anesthesia and monitoring, and uterine relaxation are important. Communication with the surgeon to determine the surgical approach and need for uterine relaxation allows the anesthesiologist the ability to vary the anesthetic technique. Lessons learned from fetal surgery may help other neonates with life-threatening anomalies and may help understand the complex issues related to preterm labor. PMID:11892506

  10. The peroxisome proliferator-activated receptors under epigenetic control in placental metabolism and fetal development.

    PubMed

    Lendvai, Ágnes; Deutsch, Manuel J; Plösch, Torsten; Ensenauer, Regina

    2016-05-15

    The placental metabolism can adapt to the environment throughout pregnancy to both the demands of the fetus and the signals from the mother. Such adaption processes include epigenetic mechanisms, which alter gene expression and may influence the offspring's health. These mechanisms are linked to the diversity of prenatal environmental exposures, including maternal under- or overnutrition or gestational diabetes. The peroxisome proliferator-activated receptors (PPARs) are nuclear receptors that contribute to the developmental plasticity of the placenta by regulating lipid and glucose metabolism pathways, including lipogenesis, steroidogenesis, glucose transporters, and placental signaling pathways, thus representing a link between energy metabolism and reproduction. Among the PPAR isoforms, PPARγ appears to be the main modulator of mammalian placentation. Certain fatty acids and lipid-derived moieties are the natural activating PPAR ligands. By controlling the amounts of maternal nutrients that go across to the fetus, the PPARs play an important regulatory role in placenta metabolism, thereby adapting to the maternal nutritional status. As demonstrated in animal studies, maternal nutrition during gestation can exert long-term influences on the PPAR methylation pattern in offspring organs. This review underlines the current state of knowledge on the relationship between environmental factors and the epigenetic regulation of the PPARs in placenta metabolism and offspring development. PMID:26860983

  11. Exogenous genistein in late gestation: effects on fetal development and sow and piglet performance.

    PubMed

    Farmer, C; Robertson, P; Xiao, C W; Rehfeldt, C; Kalbe, C

    2016-09-01

    Due to their functional similarity to estradiol, phytoestrogens could prove to be beneficial in late gestating sows. The goal of this study was to determine the impact of providing the phytoestrogen genistein during late pregnancy on the performance of sows and their litters. In total, 56 gilts were equally divided into the two following groups on day 90 of gestation: (1) controls (CTL); and (2) two daily i.m. injections of 220 mg of genistein (GEN). Treatments were carried out until farrowing. Jugular blood samples were collected from 16 gilts/treatment on days 89 and 110 of gestation, and on days 3 and 21 of lactation. Milk samples were also obtained from those sows on day 3 of lactation. A male piglet from 16 CTL and 15 GEN litters was slaughtered at 24 h postpartum and a blood sample was obtained. The liver, heart and visceral organs were weighed and the semitendinosus (ST) muscle was collected and carcass composition was determined. The treatment increased (P0.1) on weight or backfat loss of sows during lactation, milk composition or weights of piglets. The pre-weaning mortality rate of piglets was very low (0.1). However, carcasses from GEN litters contained more fat than those from CTL litters (9.63% v. 8.34%, P0.1). In conclusion, injecting gilts with 440 mg/day of genistein in late gestation increased IGF1 concentrations in gilts and carcass fat in neonatal piglets, but had minimal effect on muscle development of piglets at birth and on the performance of lactating sows and their litters. PMID:26971408

  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. Aberrant development of post-movement beta rebound in adolescents and young adults with fetal alcohol spectrum disorders

    PubMed Central

    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

  14. Fetal exposure to bisphenol A as a risk factor for the development of childhood asthma: an animal model study

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    by day 5 and approached adult levels by day 25. Conclusions Prenatal exposures that produce environmentally relevant burdens of BPA, followed by postnatal allergic sensitization and challenges, promote the development of experimental allergic asthma. Delayed expression of BPA-metabolizing enzymes may explain, at least in part, the enhanced fetal susceptibility to this common environmental contaminant. PMID:22353195

  15. 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

  16. Uterine artery blood flow, fetal hypoxia and fetal growth.

    PubMed

    Browne, Vaughn A; Julian, Colleen G; Toledo-Jaldin, Lillian; Cioffi-Ragan, Darleen; Vargas, Enrique; Moore, Lorna G

    2015-03-01

    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

  17. Challenge of Fetal Mortality

    MedlinePlus

    ... Death Data File and Linked Birth/Infant Death Data Set, National Vital Statistics System The magnitude of fetal ... Death Data File and Linked Birth/Infant Death Data Set, NVSS. The vital statistics Fetal Death Data File ...

  18. Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders

    MedlinePlus

    ... alcohol can cause a group of conditions called fetal alcohol spectrum disorders (FASDs). Effects can include physical and behavioral problems such ... alcohol syndrome is the most serious type of FASD. People with fetal alcohol syndrome have facial abnormalities, ...

  19. 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 ...

  20. 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,…

  1. Fetal Pain: Life in Troubled Waters

    PubMed Central

    Johnson, Johnnye S.

    2007-01-01

    Maternal well-being is the key to fetal well-being. A fetus is highly vulnerable and sensitive to pain and stress, and exposure has the potential for negative developmental consequences. Childbirth educators can help raise parental awareness about the importance of the maternal environment for best outcomes in fetal development. PMID:18311338

  2. FETAL ALCOHOL SYNDROME SURVEILLANCE NETWORK (FASSNET)

    EPA Science Inventory

    CDC, in collaboration with four states, has developed the first state-based program specifically designed to monitor trends in the occurrence of fetal alcohol syndrome (FAS). The program, Fetal Alcohol Syndrome Surveillance Network (FASSNet), reports that many children continue t...

  3. 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.

  4. Spatial and temporal localization during embryonic and fetal human development of the transcription factor SIM2 in brain regions altered in Down syndrome.

    PubMed

    Rachidi, Mohammed; Lopes, Carmela; Charron, Giselle; Delezoide, Anne-Lise; Paly, Evelyne; Bloch, Bernard; Delabar, Jean-Maurice

    2005-08-01

    Human SIM2 is the ortholog of Drosophila single-minded (sim), a master regulator of neurogenesis and transcriptional factor controlling midline cell fate determination. We previously localized SIM2 in a chromosome 21 critical region for Down syndrome (DS). Here, we studied SIM2 gene using a new approach to provide insights in understanding of its potential role in human development. For the first time, we showed SIM2 spatial and temporal expression pattern during human central nervous system (CNS) development, from embryonic to fetal stages. Additional investigations were performed using a new optic microscopy technology to compare signal intensity and cell density [M. Rachidi, C. Lopes, S. Gassanova, P.M. Sinet, M. Vekemans, T. Attie, A.L. Delezoide, J.M. Delabar, Regional and cellular specificity of the expression of TPRD, the tetratricopeptide Down syndrome gene, during human embryonic development, Mech. Dev. 93 (2000) 189--193]. In embryonic stages, SIM2 was identified predominantly in restricted regions of CNS, in ventral part of D1/D2 diencephalic neuroepithelium, along the neural tube and in a few cell subsets of dorsal root ganglia. In fetal stages, SIM2 showed differential expression in pyramidal and granular cell layers of hippocampal formation, in cortical cells and in cerebellar external granular and Purkinje cell layers. SIM2 expression in embryonic and fetal brain could suggest a potential role in human CNS development, in agreement with Drosophila and mouse Sim mutant phenotypes and with the conservation of the Sim function in CNS development from Drosophila to Human. SIM2 expression in human fetal brain regions, which correspond to key structures for cognitive processes, correlates well with the behavioral phenotypes of Drosophila Sim mutants and transgenic mice overexpressing Sim2. In addition, SIM2-expressing brain regions correspond to the altered structures in DS patients. All together, these findings suggest a potential role of SIM2 in CNS

  5. 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

  6. Ethanol Affects the Development of Sensory Hair Cells in Larval Zebrafish (Danio rerio)

    PubMed Central

    Matsui, Jonathan I.

    2013-01-01

    Children born to mothers with substantial alcohol consumption during pregnancy can present a number of morphological, cognitive, and sensory abnormalities, including hearing deficits, collectively known as fetal alcohol syndrome (FAS). The goal of this study was to determine if the zebrafish lateral line could be used to study sensory hair cell abnormalities caused by exposure to ethanol during embryogenesis. Some lateral line sensory hair cells are present at 2 days post-fertilization (dpf) and are functional by 5 dpf. Zebrafish embryos were raised in fish water supplemented with varying concentrations of ethanol (0.75%–1.75% by volume) from 2 dpf through 5 dpf. Ethanol treatment during development resulted in many physical abnormalities characteristic of FAS in humans. Also, the number of sensory hair cells decreased as the concentration of ethanol increased in a dose-dependent manner. The dye FM 1-43FX was used to detect the presence of functional mechanotransduction channels. The percentage of FM 1-43-labeled hair cells decreased as the concentration of ethanol increased. Methanol treatment did not affect the development of hair cells. The cell cycle markers proliferating cell nuclear antigen (PCNA) and bromodeoxyuridine (BrdU) demonstrated that ethanol reduced the number of sensory hair cells, as a consequence of decreased cellular proliferation. There was also a significant increase in the rate of apoptosis, as determined by TUNEL-labeling, in neuromasts following ethanol treatment during larval development. Therefore, zebrafish are a useful animal model to study the effects of hair cell developmental disorders associated with FAS. PMID:24324841

  7. Fetal Programming and Cardiovascular Pathology

    PubMed Central

    Alexander, Barbara T.; Dasinger, John Henry; Intapad, Suttira

    2016-01-01

    Low birth weight serves as a crude proxy for impaired growth during fetal life and indicates a failure for the fetus to achieve its full growth potential. Low birth weight can occur in response to numerous etiologies that include complications during pregnancy, poor prenatal care, parental smoking, maternal alcohol consumption or stress. Numerous epidemiological and experimental studies demonstrate that birth weight is inversely associated with blood pressure and coronary heart disease. Sex and age impact the developmental programming of hypertension. In addition, impaired growth during fetal life also programs enhanced vulnerability to a secondary insult. Macrosomia, which occurs in response to maternal obesity, diabetes and excessive weight gain during gestation, is also associated with increased cardiovascular risk. Yet, the exact mechanisms that permanently change the structure, physiology and endocrine health of an individual across their lifespan following altered growth during fetal life are not entirely clear. Transmission of increased risk from one generation to the next in the absence of an additional prenatal insult indicates an important role for epigenetic processes. Experimental studies also indicate that the sympathetic nervous system, the renin angiotensin system, increased production of oxidative stress and increased endothelin play an important role in the developmental programming of blood pressure in later life. Thus, this review will highlight how adverse influences during fetal life and early development program an increased risk for cardiovascular disease including high blood pressure and provide an overview of the underlying mechanisms that contribute to the fetal origins of cardiovascular pathology. PMID:25880521

  8. Fetal and neonatal health consequences of vertically transmitted hepatitis E virus infection.

    PubMed

    Krain, Lisa J; Atwell, Jessica E; Nelson, Kenrad E; Labrique, Alain B

    2014-02-01

    Hepatitis E virus (HEV) infections lead to tens of thousands of deaths annually, mostly in developing countries. Hepatitis E poses a significant threat to the health of expectant mothers, a well-noted epidemiologic feature of the disease, but the contribution of vertically transmitted HEV infection to fetal and neonatal morbidity and mortality has received limited attention. Evidence assembled to date suggests that mother-to-child HEV transmission may be frequent and deleterious to the fetus and newborn in pregnancies affected by hepatitis E. Additional work is required to resolve key questions. (1) What risks do subclinical maternal HEV infections and infections early in pregnancy pose to fetal health and development? (2) Does vertical transmission occur during labor and/or breastfeeding and contribute appreciably to neonatal morbidity and mortality? (3) How do treatment decisions for severely ill mothers affect fetal and neonatal outcomes? (4) Can maternal vaccination effectively prevent vertical transmission of HEV? PMID:24420778

  9. Estrogens in the wrong place at the wrong time: fetal BPA exposure and mammary cancer

    PubMed Central

    Paulose, Tessie; Speroni, Lucia; Sonnenschein, Carlos; Soto, Ana M

    2014-01-01

    Iatrogenic gestational exposure to diethylstilbestrol (DES) induced alterations of the genital tract and predisposed individuals to develop clear cell carcinoma of the vagina as well as breast cancer later in life. Gestational exposure of rodents to a related compound, the xenoestrogen bisphenol-A (BPA) increases the propensity to develop mammary cancer during adulthood, long after cessation of exposure. Exposure to BPA during gestation induces morphological alterations in both the stroma and the epithelium of the fetal mammary gland at 18 days of age. We postulate that the primary target of BPA is the fetal stroma, the only mammary tissue expressing estrogen receptors during fetal life. BPA would then alter the reciprocal stroma-epithelial interactions that mediate mammogenesis. In addition to this direct effect on the mammary gland, BPA is postulated to affect the hypothalamus and thus in turn affect the regulation of mammotropic hormones at puberty and beyond. PMID:25277313

  10. Agonist mediated fetal muscle-type nicotinic acetylcholine receptor desensitization

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The exposure of a developing embryo or fetus to teratogenic alkaloids from plants has the potential to cause developmental defects in livestock due to the inhibition of fetal movement by alkaloids. The mechanism behind the inhibition of fetal movement is the desensitization of fetal muscle-type nico...

  11. [The value of current echographic parameters in fetal biometry].

    PubMed

    Sussmann, M; Curie, P; Dreyfus, M; Renaud, R

    1985-05-01

    A review of current literature concerning developments of new parameters in fetal biometry is presented. To be sure, these parameters are very useful for detection of fetal malformations but outside of femoral length they do not contribute more valuable information than the already accepted parameters for determination of gestational age or detection of disorders of fetal growth. PMID:3895364

  12. Fetal Programming and Metabolic Syndrome

    PubMed Central

    Rinaudo, Paolo; Wang, Erica

    2014-01-01

    Metabolic syndrome is reaching epidemic proportions, particularly in developing countries. In this review, we explore the concept—based on the developmental-origin-of-health-and-disease hypothesis—that reprogramming during critical times of fetal life can lead to metabolic syndrome in adulthood. Specifically, we summarize the epidemiological evidence linking prenatal stress, manifested by low birth weight, to metabolic syndrome and its individual components. We also review animal studies that suggest potential mechanisms for the long-term effects of fetal reprogramming, including the cellular response to stress and both organ- and hormone-specific alterations induced by stress. Although metabolic syndrome in adulthood is undoubtedly caused by multiple factors, including modifiable behavior, fetal life may provide a critical window in which individuals are predisposed to metabolic syndrome later in life. PMID:21910625

  13. Hemodynamics in fetal arrhythmia.

    PubMed

    Sonesson, Sven-Erik; Acharya, Ganesh

    2016-06-01

    Fetal arrhythmias are among the few conditions that can be managed in utero. However, accurate diagnosis is essential for appropriate management. Ultrasound-based imaging methods can be used to study fetal heart structure and function noninvasively and help to understand fetal cardiovascular pathophysiology, and they remain the mainstay of evaluating fetuses with arrhythmias in clinical settings. Hemodynamic evaluation using Doppler echocardiography allows the elucidation of the electrophysiological mechanism and helps to make an accurate diagnosis. It can also be used as a tool to understand fetal cardiac pathophysiology, for assessing fetal condition and monitoring the effect of antiarrhythmic treatment. This narrative review describes Doppler techniques that are useful for evaluating fetal cardiac rhythms to refine diagnosis and provides an overview of hemodynamic changes observed in different types of fetal arrhythmia. PMID:26660845

  14. Verification of fetal brain responses by coregistration of fetal ultrasound and fetal magnetoencephalography data

    PubMed Central

    Micheli, C.; McCubbin, J.; Murphy, P.; Eswaran, H.; Lowery, C. L.; Ortiz, E.; Preissl, H.

    2009-01-01

    Fetal magnetoencephalography (fMEG) is used to study neurological functions of the developing fetus by measuring magnetic signals generated by electrical sources within the fetal brain. For this aim either auditory or visual stimuli are presented and evoked brain activity or spontaneous activity is measured at the sensor level. However a limiting factor of this approach is the low signal to noise ratio (SNR) of recorded signals. To overcome this limitation, advanced signal processing techniques such as spatial filters (e.g. beamformer) can be used to increase SNR. One crucial aspect of this technique is the forward model and, in general, a simple spherical head model is used. This head model is an integral part of a model search approach to analyze the data due to the lack of exact knowledge about the location of the fetal head. In the present report we overcome this limitation by a coregistration of volumetric ultrasound images with fMEG data. In a first step we validated the ultrasound to fMEG coregistration with a phantom and were able to show that the coregistration error is below 2 cm. In the second step we compared the results gained by the model search approach to the exact location of the fetal head determined on pregnant mothers by ultrasound. The results of this study clearly show that the results of the model search approach are in accordance with the location of the fetal head. PMID:19778620

  15. 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

  16. Fetal programming of adult Leydig cell function by androgenic effects on stem/progenitor cells

    PubMed Central

    Kilcoyne, Karen R.; Smith, Lee B.; Atanassova, Nina; Macpherson, Sheila; McKinnell, Chris; van den Driesche, Sander; Jobling, Matthew S.; Chambers, Thomas J. G.; De Gendt, Karel; Verhoeven, Guido; O’Hara, Laura; Platts, Sophie; Renato de Franca, Luiz; Lara, Nathália L. M.; Anderson, Richard A.; Sharpe, Richard M.

    2014-01-01

    Fetal growth plays a role in programming of adult cardiometabolic disorders, which in men, are associated with lowered testosterone levels. Fetal growth and fetal androgen exposure can also predetermine testosterone levels in men, although how is unknown, because the adult Leydig cells (ALCs) that produce testosterone do not differentiate until puberty. To explain this conundrum, we hypothesized that stem cells for ALCs must be present in the fetal testis and might be susceptible to programming by fetal androgen exposure during masculinization. To address this hypothesis, we used ALC ablation/regeneration to identify that, in rats, ALCs derive from stem/progenitor cells that express chicken ovalbumin upstream promoter transcription factor II. These stem cells are abundant in the fetal testis of humans and rodents, and lineage tracing in mice shows that they develop into ALCs. The stem cells also express androgen receptors (ARs). Reduction in fetal androgen action through AR KO in mice or dibutyl phthalate (DBP) -induced reduction in intratesticular testosterone in rats reduced ALC stem cell number by ∼40% at birth to adulthood and induced compensated ALC failure (low/normal testosterone and elevated luteinizing hormone). In DBP-exposed males, this failure was probably explained by reduced testicular steroidogenic acute regulatory protein expression, which is associated with increased histone methylation (H3K27me3) in the proximal promoter. Accordingly, ALCs and ALC stem cells immunoexpressed increased H3K27me3, a change that was also evident in ALC stem cells in fetal testes. These studies highlight how a key component of male reproductive development can fundamentally reprogram adult hormone production (through an epigenetic change), which might affect lifetime disease risk. PMID:24753613

  17. Sonographic markers for early diagnosis of fetal malformations

    PubMed Central

    Renna, Maria Daniela; Pisani, Paola; Conversano, Francesco; Perrone, Emanuele; Casciaro, Ernesto; Renzo, Gian Carlo Di; Paola, Marco Di; Perrone, Antonio; Casciaro, Sergio

    2013-01-01

    Fetal malformations are very frequent in industrialized countries. Although advanced maternal age may affect pregnancy outcome adversely, 80%-90% of fetal malformations occur in the absence of a specific risk factor for parents. The only effective approach for prenatal screening is currently represented by an ultrasound scan. However, ultrasound methods present two important limitations: the substantial absence of quantitative parameters and the dependence on the sonographer experience. In recent years, together with the improvement in transducer technology, quantitative and objective sonographic markers highly predictive of fetal malformations have been developed. These markers can be detected at early gestation (11-14 wk) and generally are not pathological in themselves but have an increased incidence in abnormal fetuses. Thus, prenatal ultrasonography during the second trimester of gestation provides a “genetic sonogram”, including, for instance, nuchal translucency, short humeral length, echogenic bowel, echogenic intracardiac focus and choroid plexus cyst, that is used to identify morphological features of fetal Down’s syndrome with a potential sensitivity of more than 90%. Other specific and sensitive markers can be seen in the case of cardiac defects and skeletal anomalies. In the future, sonographic markers could limit even more the use of invasive and dangerous techniques of prenatal diagnosis (amniocentesis, etc.). PMID:24179631

  18. Fetal Alcohol Syndrome Resource Guide.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    All Indian Pueblo Council, Albuquerque, NM.

    The guide was developed to assist professionals working with American Indian people as a resource in obtaining printed and non-printed materials on Fetal Alcohol Syndrome. The resource guide is divided into the following sections: films (4), books (5), bibliographies (2), pamphlets (16), posters (5), slides (2), training curriculum (3), and…

  19. Supporting Individuals with Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders:a Summary of Effective Practices

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Riggie, Jennifer; Xu, Tingting

    2013-01-01

    Fetal alcohol spectrum disorder (FASD) is a lifelong condition that significantly affects the individual's learning, development, behavior, family, and quality of life. Diagnosing children with this condition and providing effective supports is challenging for professionals because little intervention research has been performed with the…

  20. Defective thyroid ontogenesis in fetal hypothyroid (hyt/hyt) mice

    SciTech Connect

    Beamer, W.G.; Cresswell, L.A.

    1982-03-01

    Thyroid glands of fetal hypothyroid (hyt/hyt) mice were studied to determine the effects of the mutant gene during embryogenesis. Comparisons of mutant and normal thyroids were made with respect to morphology, iodine-concentrating ability, and glandular thyroxine (T4) content at day 18 of gestation. Fetal hyt/hyt thyroid tissue was properly located, but incompletely differentiated. The mutant thyroid was characterized microscopically by small, poorly developed follicles with colloid diminished in PAS-staining properties. The mutant glands' ability to concentrate iodine was found to be only 5--16% of that exhibited by normal glands. When litters contained both mutant and normal off-spring, the differential iodine-concentrating ability allowed fetuses to be separated into two distinct, nonoverlapping populations. The distribution of fetal mice into high or low iodine-concentrating groups agreed closely with predicted frequencies for normal and mutant phenotypes. Thyroid content of T4 in mutant mice was found to be approximately equal to that found in age-matched normal controls. The poorly developed morphology and deficient iodine-concentrating ability of fetal thyroids from day 18 hyt/hyt mice indicated that the mutant gene acts during the ontogeny of this gland. Although such data are not available on human fetuses affected by thyroid dysgenesis, postnatal hyt/hyt mice display characteristics similar to those of infants born with this form of congenital primary hypothyroidism. Thus, elucidation of the site of mutant gene action in the mouse should contribute to our knowledge of disturbed fetal thyroid development and its implications in the adult mammal.

  1. 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.

  2. Beneficial Microbes Affect Endogenous Mechanisms Controlling Root Development.

    PubMed

    Verbon, Eline H; Liberman, Louisa M

    2016-03-01

    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 Arabidopsis thaliana root growth and development by modulating cell division and differentiation in the primary root and influencing lateral root development. 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. Mfn2 Affects Embryo Development via Mitochondrial Dysfunction and Apoptosis

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Qun; Xiang, Wenpei

    2015-01-01

    Background Growth factors, energy sources, and mitochondrial function strongly affect embryo growth and development in vitro. The biological role and prospective significance of the mitofusin gene Mfn2 in the development of preimplantation embryos remain poorly understood. Our goal is to profile the role of Mfn2 in mouse embryos and determine the underlying mechanism of Mfn2 function in embryo development. Methods We transfected Mfn2-siRNA into 2-cell fertilized eggs and then examined the expression of Mfn2, the anti-apoptotic protein Bcl-2, and the apoptosis-promoting protein Bax by Western blot. Additionally, we determined the blastocyst formation rate and measured ATP levels, mtDNA levels, mitochondrial membrane potential (ΔΨm), and apoptosis in all of the embryos. Results The results indicate that the Mfn2 and Bcl-2 levels were markedly decreased, whereas Bax levels were increased in the T group (embryos transfected with Mfn2-siRNA) compared with the C group (embryos transfected with control-siRNA). The blastocyst formation rate was significantly decreased in the T group. The ATP content and the relative amounts of mtDNA and cDNA in the T group were significantly reduced compared with the C group. In the T group, ΔΨm and Ca2+ levels were reduced, and the number of apoptotic cells was increased. Conclusion Low in vitro expression of Mfn2 attenuates the blastocyst formation rate and cleavage speed in mouse zygotes and causes mitochondrial dysfunction, as confirmed by the ATP and mtDNA levels and mitochondrial membrane potential. Mfn2 deficiency induced apoptosis through the Bcl-2/Bax and Ca2+ pathways. These findings indicate that Mfn2 could affect preimplantation embryo development through mitochondrial function and cellular apoptosis. PMID:25978725

  4. Fetal magnetic resonance imaging and ultrasound.

    PubMed

    Wataganara, Tuangsit; Ebrashy, Alaa; Aliyu, Labaran Dayyabu; Moreira de Sa, Renato Augusto; Pooh, Ritsuko; Kurjak, Asim; Sen, Cihat; Adra, Abdallah; Stanojevic, Milan

    2016-07-01

    Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) has been increasingly adopted in obstetrics practice in the past three decades. MRI aids prenatal ultrasound and improves diagnostic accuracy for selected maternal and fetal conditions. However, it should be considered only when high-quality ultrasound cannot provide certain information that affects the counseling, prenatal intervention, pregnancy course, and delivery plan. Major indications of fetal MRI include, but are not restricted to, morbidly adherent placenta, selected cases of fetal brain anomalies, thoracic lesions (especially in severe congenital diaphragmatic hernia), and soft tissue tumors at head and neck regions of the fetus. For fetal anatomy assessment, a 1.5-Tesla machine with a fast T2-weighted single-shot technique is recommended for image requisition of common fetal abnormalities. Individual judgment needs to be applied when considering usage of a 3-Tesla machine. Gadolinium MRI contrast is not recommended during pregnancy. MRI should be avoided in the first half of pregnancy due to small fetal structures and motion artifacts. Assessment of fetal cerebral cortex can be achieved with MRI in the third trimester. MRI is a viable research tool for noninvasive interrogation of the fetus and the placenta. PMID:27092644

  5. Effects of Arsenite Exposure during Fetal Development on Energy Metabolism and Susceptibility to Diet-Induced Fatty Liver Disease in Male Mice

    PubMed Central

    Ditzel, Eric J.; Nguyen, Thu; Parker, Patricia; Camenisch, Todd D.

    2015-01-01

    Background Chronic exposure to arsenicals at various life stages and across a range of exposures has been implicated in cardiometabolic and liver disease, but disease predisposition from developmental exposures remains unclear. Objectives In utero and post-weaning exposure to trivalent arsenic (AsIII) was examined on the background of a Western-style diet to determine whether AsIII exposure affects metabolic disease. Methods Male Swiss Webster mice were exposed to 100 ppb AsIII in utero, after weaning, or both. Ad libitum access to a Western-style diet was provided after weaning, and the plasma metabolome, liver histopathology, liver enzyme activity, and gene expression were analyzed. Results Hepatic lipid composition and histopathology revealed that developmental AsIII exposure exacerbated Western-style diet–induced fatty liver disease. Continuous AsIII exposure increased cardiometabolic risk factors including increased body weight, insulin resistance, hyperglycemia, and plasma triglycerides. AsIII exposure produced a decrease in the intermediates of glycolysis and the TCA cycle while increasing ketones. Hepatic isocitrate dehydrogenase activity was also decreased, which confirmed disruption of the TCA cycle. Developmental AsIII exposure increased the expression of genes involved in fatty acid synthesis, lipogenesis, inflammation, and packaging of triglycerides, suggesting an increased acetyl coenzyme A (acetyl-CoA) load. Conclusions In utero and continuous early-life exposure to AsIII disrupted normal metabolism and elevated the risk for fatty liver disease in mice maintained on a high-fat diet. Our findings suggest that individuals exposed to AsIII during key developmental periods and who remain exposed to AsIII on the background of a Western-style diet may be at increased risk for metabolic disease later in life. Citation Ditzel EJ, Nguyen T, Parker P, Camenisch TD. 2016. Effects of arsenite exposure during fetal development on energy metabolism and

  6. Micro-CT imaging: Developing criteria for examining fetal skeletons in regulatory developmental toxicology studies - A workshop report.

    PubMed

    Solomon, Howard M; Makris, Susan L; Alsaid, Hasan; Bermudez, Oscar; Beyer, Bruce K; Chen, Antong; Chen, Connie L; Chen, Zhou; Chmielewski, Gary; DeLise, Anthony M; de Schaepdrijver, Luc; Dogdas, Belma; French, Julian; Harrouk, Wafa; Helfgott, Jonathan; Henkelman, R Mark; Hesterman, Jacob; Hew, Kok-Wah; Hoberman, Alan; Lo, Cecilia W; McDougal, Andrew; Minck, Daniel R; Scott, Lelia; Stewart, Jane; Sutherland, Vicki; Tatiparthi, Arun K; Winkelmann, Christopher T; Wise, L David; Wood, Sandra L; Ying, Xiaoyou

    2016-06-01

    During the past two decades the use and refinements of imaging modalities have markedly increased making it possible to image embryos and fetuses used in pivotal nonclinical studies submitted to regulatory agencies. Implementing these technologies into the Good Laboratory Practice environment requires rigorous testing, validation, and documentation to ensure the reproducibility of data. A workshop on current practices and regulatory requirements was held with the goal of defining minimal criteria for the proper implementation of these technologies and subsequent submission to regulatory agencies. Micro-computed tomography (micro-CT) is especially well suited for high-throughput evaluations, and is gaining popularity to evaluate fetal skeletons to assess the potential developmental toxicity of test agents. This workshop was convened to help scientists in the developmental toxicology field understand and apply micro-CT technology to nonclinical toxicology studies and facilitate the regulatory acceptance of imaging data. Presentations and workshop discussions covered: (1) principles of micro-CT fetal imaging; (2) concordance of findings with conventional skeletal evaluations; and (3) regulatory requirements for validating the system. Establishing these requirements for micro-CT examination can provide a path forward for laboratories considering implementing this technology and provide regulatory agencies with a basis to consider the acceptability of data generated via this technology. PMID:26930635

  7. Development of brain mechanisms for processing affective touch

    PubMed Central

    Björnsdotter, Malin; Gordon, Ilanit; Pelphrey, Kevin A.; Olausson, Håkan; Kaiser, Martha D.

    2014-01-01

    Affective tactile stimulation plays a key role in the maturation of neural circuits, but the development of brain mechanisms processing touch is poorly understood. We therefore used functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) to study brain responses to soft brush stroking of both glabrous (palm) and hairy (forearm) skin in healthy children (5–13 years), adolescents (14–17 years), and adults (25–35 years). Adult-defined regions-of-interests in the primary somatosensory cortex (SI), secondary somatosensory cortex (SII), insular cortex and right posterior superior temporal sulcus (pSTS) were significantly and similarly activated in all age groups. Whole-brain analyses revealed that responses in the ipsilateral SII were positively correlated with age in both genders, and that responses in bilateral regions near the pSTS correlated significantly and strongly with age in females but not in males. These results suggest that brain mechanisms associated with both sensory-discriminative and affective-motivational aspects of touch are largely established in school-aged children, and that there is a general continuing maturation of SII and a female-specific increase in pSTS sensitivity with age. Our work establishes a groundwork for future comparative studies of tactile processing in developmental disorders characterized by disrupted social perception such as autism. PMID:24550800

  8. Possible fetal determinants of male infertility.

    PubMed

    Juul, Anders; Almstrup, Kristian; Andersson, Anna-Maria; Jensen, Tina K; Jørgensen, Niels; Main, Katharina M; Rajpert-De Meyts, Ewa; Toppari, Jorma; Skakkebæk, Niels E

    2014-09-01

    Although common reproductive problems, such as male infertility and testicular cancer, present in adult life, strong evidence exists that these reproductive disorders might have a fetal origin. The evidence is derived not only from large epidemiological studies that show birth-cohort effects with regard to testicular cancer, levels of testosterone and semen quality, but also from histopathological observations. Many infertile men have histological signs of testicular dysgenesis, including Sertoli-cell-only tubules, immature undifferentiated Sertoli cells, microliths and Leydig cell nodules. The most severe gonadal symptoms occur in patients with disorders of sexual development (DSDs) who have genetic mutations, in whom even sex reversal of individuals with a 46,XY DSD can occur. However, patients with severe DSDs might represent only a small proportion of DSD cases, with milder forms of testicular dysgenesis potentially induced by exposure to environmental and lifestyle factors. Interestingly, maternal smoking during pregnancy has a stronger effect on spermatogenesis than a man's own smoking. Other lifestyle factors such as alcohol consumption and obesity might also have a role. However, increasing indirect evidence exists that exposure to ubiquitous endocrine disrupting chemicals, present at measurable concentrations in individuals, might affect development of human fetal testis. If confirmed, health policies to prevent male reproductive problems should not only target adult men, but also pregnant women and their children. PMID:24935122

  9. Sensory activity affects sensory axon development in C. elegans.

    PubMed

    Peckol, E L; Zallen, J A; Yarrow, J C; Bargmann, C I

    1999-05-01

    The simple nervous system of the nematode C. elegans consists of 302 neurons with highly reproducible morphologies, suggesting a hard-wired program of axon guidance. Surprisingly, we show here that sensory activity shapes sensory axon morphology in C. elegans. A class of mutants with deformed sensory cilia at their dendrite endings have extra axon branches, suggesting that sensory deprivation disrupts axon outgrowth. Mutations that alter calcium channels or membrane potential cause similar defects. Cell-specific perturbations of sensory activity can cause cell-autonomous changes in axon morphology. Although the sensory axons initially reach their targets in the embryo, the mutations that alter sensory activity cause extra axon growth late in development. Thus, perturbations of activity affect the maintenance of sensory axon morphology after an initial pattern of innervation is established. This system provides a genetically tractable model for identifying molecular mechanisms linking neuronal activity to nervous system structure. PMID:10101123

  10. [What is known about the outcome as adults for children with fetal alcohol syndrome (FAS)/fetal alcohol spectrum disorders (FASD)?].

    PubMed

    Walloch, J E; Burger, P H; Kornhuber, J

    2012-06-01

    In the field of adult psychiatry in German-speaking countries, little attention is as yet paid to the psychic defects that a fetus can sustain as a result of prenatal exposure to alcohol. Although children of alcohol-dependent mothers do present to psychiatric institutions as adults with manifold symptoms, e. g., attention deficit disorders, affective disorders or intellectual disability, fetal alcohol spectrum disorders are rarely diagnosed as an underlying cause. Appropriate therapy guidelines do not exist. Current review papers within the German-speaking countries usually stem from paediatric and adolescent psychiatry or medicine. Based on a selected review of the literature, the following paper addresses and discusses the disease entity of fetal alcohol spectrum disorders and fetal alcohol syndrome and their significance for adult psychiatry and also identifies open questions and research requirements, e. g., the development of diagnostic instruments or the establishment of diagnostic categories. PMID:22173965

  11. Activation of Nod1 Signaling Induces Fetal Growth Restriction and Death through Fetal and Maternal Vasculopathy

    PubMed Central

    Nishio, Hisanori; Takada, Hidetoshi; Sakai, Yasunari; Nanishi, Etsuro; Ochiai, Masayuki; Onimaru, Mitsuho; Chen, Si Jing; Matsui, Toshiro; Hara, Toshiro

    2016-01-01

    Intrauterine fetal growth restriction (IUGR) and death (IUFD) are both serious problems in the perinatal medicine. Fetal vasculopathy is currently considered to account for a pathogenic mechanism of IUGR and IUFD. We previously demonstrated that an innate immune receptor, the nucleotide-binding oligomerization domain-1 (Nod1), contributed to the development of vascular inflammations in mice at postnatal stages. However, little is known about the deleterious effects of activated Nod1 signaling on embryonic growth and development. We report that administration of FK565, one of the Nod1 ligands, to pregnant C57BL/6 mice induced IUGR and IUFD. Mass spectrometry analysis revealed that maternally injected FK565 was distributed to the fetal tissues across placenta. In addition, maternal injection of FK565 induced robust increases in the amounts of CCL2, IL-6, and TNF proteins as well as NO in maternal, placental and fetal tissues. Nod1 was highly expressed in fetal vascular tissues, where significantly higher levels of CCL2 and IL-6 mRNAs were induced with maternal injection of FK565 than those in other tissues. Using Nod1-knockout mice, we verified that both maternal and fetal tissues were involved in the development of IUGR and IUFD. Furthermore, FK565 induced upregulation of genes associated with immune response, inflammation, and apoptosis in fetal vascular tissues. Our data thus provided new evidence for the pathogenic role of Nod1 in the development of IUGR and IUFD at the maternal-fetal interface. PMID:26880761

  12. Impact of 4-methylbenzylidene-camphor (4-MBC) during embryonic and fetal development in the neuroendocrine regulation of testicular axis in prepubertal and peripubertal male rats.

    PubMed

    Carou, M E; Szwarcfarb, B; Deguiz, M L; Reynoso, R; Carbone, S; Moguilevsky, J A; Scacchi, P; Ponzo, O J

    2009-10-01

    4-Methylbenzylidene-camphor (4-MBC), an UV-B ray filter, belongs to the endocrine disrupters involved with alterations in the reproductive axis. Our target was to study the effect of 4-MBC on the neuroendocrine parameters that regulate reproduction in prepubertal and peripubertal male rats, which received this disrupter during embryonic and fetal development. 4-MBC was administered (sc) to female rats since pregnancy onset in doses of 20, 100 and 500 mg/kg/day. The litters were sacrificed at 15 or 30 days old to determine testicular weight, gonadotropin and prolactin serum levels and also GnRH and amino acids release from the hypothalamus. The exposure to 20 mg/kg/day only increased the LH serum levels in 30-day-old males. Doses of 100 and 500 mg/kg/day caused a decrease in testicular weight and in LH, GnRH and glutamate levels, in prepubertal rats (15-day-old specimens), and an increase in, gonadotropin (LH and FSH) con-centration and aspartate levels in peripubertal rats (30-day-old specimens), without changes in testicular weight. Prolactinaemia remained unaltered in all groups. Results obtained show that the administration of high doses of 4-MBC during embryonic and fetal stage inhibits the testicular axis in male rats during the prepubertal stage and stimulates it during peripubertad stage. On the other hand in the case of low doses no significant effects were observed. PMID:19885997

  13. Propofol Pharmacokinetics and Estimation of Fetal Propofol Exposure during Mid-Gestational Fetal Surgery: A Maternal-Fetal Sheep Model

    PubMed Central

    Niu, Jing; Venkatasubramanian, Raja; Vinks, Alexander A.; Sadhasivam, Senthilkumar

    2016-01-01

    Background Measuring fetal drug concentrations is extremely difficult in humans. We conducted a study in pregnant sheep to simultaneously describe maternal and fetal concentrations of propofol, a common intravenous anesthetic agent used in humans. Compared to inhalational anesthesia, propofol supplemented anesthesia lowered the dose of desflurane required to provide adequate uterine relaxation during open fetal surgery. This resulted in better intraoperative fetal cardiac outcome. This study describes maternal and fetal propofol pharmacokinetics (PK) using a chronically instrumented maternal-fetal sheep model. Methods Fetal and maternal blood samples were simultaneously collected from eight mid-gestational pregnant ewes during general anesthesia with propofol, remifentanil and desflurane. Nonlinear mixed-effects modeling was performed by using NONMEM software. Total body weight, gestational age and hemodynamic parameters were tested in the covariate analysis. The final model was validated by bootstrapping and visual predictive check. Results A total of 160 propofol samples were collected. A 2-compartment maternal PK model with a third fetal compartment appropriately described the data. Mean population parameter estimates for maternal propofol clearance and central volume of distribution were 4.17 L/min and 37.7 L, respectively, in a typical ewe with a median heart rate of 135 beats/min. Increase in maternal heart rate significantly correlated with increase in propofol clearance. The estimated population maternal-fetal inter-compartment clearance was 0.0138 L/min and the volume of distribution of propofol in the fetus was 0.144 L. Fetal propofol clearance was found to be almost negligible compared to maternal clearance and could not be robustly estimated. Conclusions For the first time, a maternal-fetal PK model of propofol in pregnant ewes was successfully developed. This study narrows the gap in our knowledge in maternal-fetal PK model in human. Our study confirms

  14. Exposure to serotonin adversely affects oligodendrocyte development and myelination in vitro.

    PubMed

    Fan, Lir-Wan; Bhatt, Abhay; Tien, Lu-Tai; Zheng, Baoying; Simpson, Kimberly L; Lin, Rick C S; Cai, Zhengwei; Kumar, Praveen; Pang, Yi

    2015-05-01

    patterns of contactin-associated protein (Caspr) clustering were observed at the sites of Node of Ranvier, suggesting that 5-HT exposure may affect other axon-derived factors for myelination. In summary, this is the first study to demonstrate that manipulation of serotonin levels affects OL development and myelination, which may contribute to altered neural connectivity noted in SSRIs-treated animals. The current in vitro study demonstrated that exposure to high level of serotonin (5-HT) led to aberrant oligodendrocyte (OL) development, cell injury, and myelination deficit. We propose that elevated extracellular serotonin levels in the fetal brain, such as upon the use of selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) during pregnancy, may adversely affect OL development and/or myelination, thus contributing to altered neural connectivity seen in Autism Spectrum Disorders. OPC = oligodendrocyte progenitor cell. PMID:25382136

  15. Glia and Neurodevelopment: Focus on Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders

    PubMed Central

    Guizzetti, Marina; Zhang, Xiaolu; Goeke, Calla; Gavin, David P.

    2014-01-01

    During the last 20 years, new and exciting roles for glial cells in brain development have been described. Moreover, several recent studies implicated glial cells in the pathogenesis of neurodevelopmental disorders including Down syndrome, Fragile X syndrome, Rett Syndrome, Autism Spectrum Disorders, and Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders (FASD). Abnormalities in glial cell development and proliferation and increased glial cell apoptosis contribute to the adverse effects of ethanol on the developing brain and it is becoming apparent that the effects of fetal alcohol are due, at least in part, to effects on glial cells affecting their ability to modulate neuronal development and function. The three major classes of glial cells, astrocytes, oligodendrocytes, and microglia as well as their precursors are affected by ethanol during brain development. Alterations in glial cell functions by ethanol dramatically affect neuronal development, survival, and function and ultimately impair the development of the proper brain architecture and connectivity. For instance, ethanol inhibits astrocyte-mediated neuritogenesis and oligodendrocyte development, survival and myelination; furthermore, ethanol induces microglia activation and oxidative stress leading to the exacerbation of ethanol-induced neuronal cell death. This review article describes the most significant recent findings pertaining the effects of ethanol on glial cells and their significance in the pathophysiology of FASD and other neurodevelopmental disorders. PMID:25426477

  16. Glia and neurodevelopment: focus on fetal alcohol spectrum disorders.

    PubMed

    Guizzetti, Marina; Zhang, Xiaolu; Goeke, Calla; Gavin, David P

    2014-01-01

    During the last 20 years, new and exciting roles for glial cells in brain development have been described. Moreover, several recent studies implicated glial cells in the pathogenesis of neurodevelopmental disorders including Down syndrome, Fragile X syndrome, Rett Syndrome, Autism Spectrum Disorders, and Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders (FASD). Abnormalities in glial cell development and proliferation and increased glial cell apoptosis contribute to the adverse effects of ethanol on the developing brain and it is becoming apparent that the effects of fetal alcohol are due, at least in part, to effects on glial cells affecting their ability to modulate neuronal development and function. The three major classes of glial cells, astrocytes, oligodendrocytes, and microglia as well as their precursors are affected by ethanol during brain development. Alterations in glial cell functions by ethanol dramatically affect neuronal development, survival, and function and ultimately impair the development of the proper brain architecture and connectivity. For instance, ethanol inhibits astrocyte-mediated neuritogenesis and oligodendrocyte development, survival and myelination; furthermore, ethanol induces microglia activation and oxidative stress leading to the exacerbation of ethanol-induced neuronal cell death. This review article describes the most significant recent findings pertaining the effects of ethanol on glial cells and their significance in the pathophysiology of FASD and other neurodevelopmental disorders. PMID:25426477

  17. Development of Lymantria dispar affected by manganese in food.

    PubMed

    Kula, Emanuel; Martinek, Petr; Chromcová, Lucie; Hedbávný, Josef

    2014-10-01

    We studied the response of gypsy moth (Lymantria dispar (Linnaeus) (Lepidoptera: Lymantriidae)) to the content of manganese in food in the laboratory breeding of caterpillars. The food of the caterpillars {Betula pendula Roth (Fagales: Betulaceae) leaves} was contaminated by dipping in the solution of MnCl2 · 4H2O with manganese concentrations of 0, 0.5, 5 and 10 mg ml(-1), by which differentiated manganese contents (307; 632; 4,087 and 8,124 mg kg(-1)) were reached. Parameters recorded during the rearing were as follows: effect of manganese on food consumption, mortality and length of the development of caterpillars, pupation and hatching of imagoes. At the same time, manganese concentrations were determined in the offered and unconsumed food, excrements, and exuviae of the caterpillars, pupal cases and imagoes by using the AAS method. As compared with the control, high manganese contents in the food of gypsy moth caterpillars affected the process of development particularly by increased mortality of the first instar caterpillars (8 % mortality for caterpillars with no Mn contamination (T0) and 62 % mortality for subjects with the highest contamination by manganese (T3)), by prolonged development of the first-third instar (18.7 days (T0) and 27.8 days (T3)) and by increased food consumption of the first-third instar {0.185 g of leaf dry matter (T0) and 0.483 g of leaf dry matter (T3)}. The main defence strategy of the caterpillars to prevent contamination by the increased manganese content in food is the translocation of manganese into frass and exuviae castoff in the process of ecdysis. In the process of development, the content of manganese was reduced by excretion in imagoes to 0.5 % of the intake level even at its maximum inputs in food. PMID:25028315

  18. Maternal Photoperiodic History Affects Offspring Development in Syrian Hamsters

    PubMed Central

    Beery, Annaliese K.; Paul, Matthew J.; Routman, David M.; Zucker, Irving

    2009-01-01

    During the first 7 weeks of postnatal life, short day lengths inhibit the onset of puberty in many photoperiodic rodents, but not in Syrian hamsters. In this species, timing of puberty and fecundity are independent of the early postnatal photoperiod. Gestational day length affects postnatal reproductive development in several rodents; its role in Syrian hamsters has not been assessed. We tested the hypothesis that cumulative effects of pre- and postnatal short day lengths would restrain gonadal development in male Syrian hamsters. Males with prenatal short day exposure were generated by dams transferred to short day lengths 6 weeks, 3 weeks, and 0 weeks prior to mating. Additional groups were gestated in long day lengths and transferred to short days at birth, at 4 weeks of age, or not transferred (control hamsters). In pups of dams exposed to short day treatment throughout gestation, decreased testis growth was apparent by 3 weeks and persisted through 9 weeks of age, at which time maximum testis size was attained. A subset of males (14%), whose dams had been in short days for 3 to 6 weeks prior to mating displayed pronounced delays in testicular development, similar to those of other photoperiodic rodents. This treatment also increased the percentage of male offspring that underwent little or no gonadal regression postnatally (39%). By 19 weeks of age, males housed in short days completed spontaneous gonadal development. After prolonged long day treatment to break refractoriness, hamsters that initially were classified as nonregressors underwent testicular regression in response to a 2nd sequence of short day lengths. The combined action of prenatal and early postnatal short day lengths diminishes testicular growth of prepubertal Syrian hamsters no later than the 3rd week of postnatal life, albeit to a lesser extent than in other photoperiodic rodents. PMID:18838610

  19. Fetal environment

    PubMed Central

    Kinare, Arun

    2008-01-01

    The intrauterine environment has a strong influence on pregnancy outcome. The placenta and the umbilical cord together form the main supply line of the fetus. Amniotic fluid also serves important functions. These three main components decide whether there will be an uneventful pregnancy and the successful birth of a healthy baby. An insult to the intrauterine environment has an impact on the programming of the fetus, which can become evident in later life, mainly in the form of cardiovascular diseases, diabetes, and certain learning disabilities. The past two decades have witnessed major contributions from researchers in this field, who have included ultrasonologists, epidemiologists, neonatologists, and pediatricians. Besides being responsible for these delayed postnatal effects, abnormalities of the placenta, umbilical cord, and amniotic fluid also have associations with structural and chromosomal disorders. Population and race also influence pregnancy outcomes to some extent in certain situations. USG is the most sensitive imaging tool currently available for evaluation of these factors and can offer considerable information in this area. This article aims at reviewing the USG-related developments in this area and the anatomy, physiology, and various pathologies of the placenta, umbilical cord, and the amniotic fluid. PMID:19774194

  20. Spaceflight affects postnatal development of the aortic wall in rats.

    PubMed

    Katsuda, Shin-ichiro; Yamasaki, Masao; Waki, Hidefumi; Miyake, Masao; O-ishi, Hirotaka; Katahira, Kiyoaki; Nagayama, Tadanori; Miyamoto, Yukako; Hasegawa, Masamitsu; Wago, Haruyuki; Okouchi, Toshiyasu; Shimizu, Tsuyoshi

    2014-01-01

    We investigated effect of microgravity environment during spaceflight on postnatal development of the rheological properties of the aorta in rats. The neonate rats were randomly divided at 7 days of age into the spaceflight, asynchronous ground control, and vivarium control groups (8 pups for one dam). The spaceflight group rats at 9 days of age were exposed to microgravity environment for 16 days. A longitudinal wall strip of the proximal descending thoracic aorta was subjected to stress-strain and stress-relaxation tests. Wall tensile force was significantly smaller in the spaceflight group than in the two control groups, whereas there were no significant differences in wall stress or incremental elastic modulus at each strain among the three groups. Wall thickness and number of smooth muscle fibers were significantly smaller in the spaceflight group than in the two control groups, but there were no significant differences in amounts of either the elastin or collagen fibers among the three groups. The decreased thickness was mainly caused by the decreased number of smooth muscle cells. Plastic deformation was observed only in the spaceflight group in the stress-strain test. A microgravity environment during spaceflight could affect postnatal development of the morphological and rheological properties of the aorta. PMID:25210713

  1. Spaceflight Affects Postnatal Development of the Aortic Wall in Rats

    PubMed Central

    Yamasaki, Masao; Waki, Hidefumi; Miyake, Masao; Nagayama, Tadanori; Miyamoto, Yukako; Wago, Haruyuki; Okouchi, Toshiyasu; Shimizu, Tsuyoshi

    2014-01-01

    We investigated effect of microgravity environment during spaceflight on postnatal development of the rheological properties of the aorta in rats. The neonate rats were randomly divided at 7 days of age into the spaceflight, asynchronous ground control, and vivarium control groups (8 pups for one dam). The spaceflight group rats at 9 days of age were exposed to microgravity environment for 16 days. A longitudinal wall strip of the proximal descending thoracic aorta was subjected to stress-strain and stress-relaxation tests. Wall tensile force was significantly smaller in the spaceflight group than in the two control groups, whereas there were no significant differences in wall stress or incremental elastic modulus at each strain among the three groups. Wall thickness and number of smooth muscle fibers were significantly smaller in the spaceflight group than in the two control groups, but there were no significant differences in amounts of either the elastin or collagen fibers among the three groups. The decreased thickness was mainly caused by the decreased number of smooth muscle cells. Plastic deformation was observed only in the spaceflight group in the stress-strain test. A microgravity environment during spaceflight could affect postnatal development of the morphological and rheological properties of the aorta. PMID:25210713

  2. SIRT1 Disruption in Human Fetal Hepatocytes Leads to Increased Accumulation of Glucose and Lipids

    PubMed Central

    Tobita, Takamasa; Guzman-Lepe, Jorge; Takeishi, Kazuki; Nakao, Toshimasa; Wang, Yang; Meng, Fanying; Deng, Chu-Xia; Collin de l’Hortet, Alexandra; Soto-Gutierrez, Alejandro

    2016-01-01

    There are unprecedented epidemics of obesity, such as type II diabetes and non-alcoholic fatty liver diseases (NAFLD) in developed countries. A concerning percentage of American children are being affected by obesity and NAFLD. Studies have suggested that the maternal environment in utero might play a role in the development of these diseases later in life. In this study, we documented that inhibiting SIRT1 signaling in human fetal hepatocytes rapidly led to an increase in intracellular glucose and lipids levels. More importantly, both de novo lipogenesis and gluconeogenesis related genes were upregulated upon SIRT1 inhibition. The AKT/FOXO1 pathway, a major negative regulator of gluconeogenesis, was decreased in the human fetal hepatocytes inhibited for SIRT1, consistent with the higher level of gluconeogenesis. These results indicate that SIRT1 is an important regulator of lipid and carbohydrate metabolisms within human fetal hepatocytes, acting as an adaptive transcriptional response to environmental changes. PMID:26890260

  3. SIRT1 Disruption in Human Fetal Hepatocytes Leads to Increased Accumulation of Glucose and Lipids.

    PubMed

    Tobita, Takamasa; Guzman-Lepe, Jorge; Takeishi, Kazuki; Nakao, Toshimasa; Wang, Yang; Meng, Fanying; Deng, Chu-Xia; Collin de l'Hortet, Alexandra; Soto-Gutierrez, Alejandro

    2016-01-01

    There are unprecedented epidemics of obesity, such as type II diabetes and non-alcoholic fatty liver diseases (NAFLD) in developed countries. A concerning percentage of American children are being affected by obesity and NAFLD. Studies have suggested that the maternal environment in utero might play a role in the development of these diseases later in life. In this study, we documented that inhibiting SIRT1 signaling in human fetal hepatocytes rapidly led to an increase in intracellular glucose and lipids levels. More importantly, both de novo lipogenesis and gluconeogenesis related genes were upregulated upon SIRT1 inhibition. The AKT/FOXO1 pathway, a major negative regulator of gluconeogenesis, was decreased in the human fetal hepatocytes inhibited for SIRT1, consistent with the higher level of gluconeogenesis. These results indicate that SIRT1 is an important regulator of lipid and carbohydrate metabolisms within human fetal hepatocytes, acting as an adaptive transcriptional response to environmental changes. PMID:26890260

  4. Syphilis Infection: An Uncommon Etiology of Infectious Nonimmune Fetal Hydrops with Anemia.

    PubMed

    Fuchs, Florent; Michaux, Katell; Rousseau, Céline; Ovetchkine, Philippe; Audibert, François

    2016-01-01

    An increased prevalence of syphilis has been observed in many developed countries over the last decade. During pregnancy, syphilis can affect the fetus through development of nonspecific symptoms such as microcephaly, ascites, hepatosplenomegaly, dilated and echogenic bowel, placentomegaly, and, uncommonly, fetal hydrops. Congenital syphilis also leads to hematologic abnormalities such as anemia, thrombocytopenia, leukopenia, and leukocytosis. We present a case of nonimmune fetal hydrops with anemia related to syphilis infection. Diagnosis was confirmed by a maternal serological test and microbiological testing on amniotic fluid, umbilical cord, and placental tissues. The patient was treated with penicillin and the fetus received an intrauterine red blood cell transfusion, but fetal death occurred shortly after. Such a presentation is mostly related to parvovirus B19, and syphilis etiology is poorly mentioned because physicians have rarely seen early congenital syphilis in the past. However, given the increasing prevalence of this disease in the adult population, clinicians should remain alert to the various presentations of congenital syphilis. PMID:25138225

  5. Culture conditions affect the cholinergic development of an isolated subpopulation of chick mesencephalic neural crest cells.

    PubMed

    Barald, K F

    1989-10-01

    Although neural crest cells are known to be very responsive to environmental cues during their development, recent evidence indicates that at least some subpopulations may be committed to a specific differentiation program prior to migration. Because the neural crest is composed of a heterogeneous mixture of cells that contributes to many vertebrate cell lineages, assessing the properties of specific subpopulations and the effect of the environment on their development has been difficult. To address this problem, we have isolated a pure subpopulation of chick mesencephalic neural crest cells by fluorescence no-flow cytometry after labeling them with monoclonal antibodies (Mabs) to a 75-kDa cell surface antigen that is associated with high affinity choline uptake. When cultures of chick mesencephalic neural crest cells are labeled with these Mabs and a fluorescent second step antibody, approximately 5% of the cells are antigen-positive (A+). After sorting, 100% of the resulting cultured mesencephalic neural crest cells are A+. The Mabs we used also label all of the neurons of the embryonic chick and quail ciliary ganglion in vivo and in vitro. We have compared the effect of various cell culture media on the isolated neural crest subpopulation and the heterogeneous chick mesencephalic neural crest from which it was derived. A+ cells were passaged and grown in a variety of media, each of which differently affected its characteristics and development. A+ cells proliferated in the presence of 15% fetal bovine serum (FBS) and high concentrations (10-15%) of chick embryo extract, but did not differentiate, although they retained basal levels of choline acetyltransferase (ChAT) activity. However, in chick serum and high (25 mM as opposed to 7 mM) K+, and heart-, iris-, or lung-conditioned medium, all of which are known to promote survival and/or cholinergic development of ciliary ganglion neurons, the cells ceased to proliferate and all of the cells in the culture became

  6. Neurobehavioral, neurologic, and neuroimaging characteristics of fetal alcohol spectrum disorders.

    PubMed

    Glass, Leila; Ware, Ashley L; Mattson, Sarah N

    2014-01-01

    Alcohol consumption during pregnancy can have deleterious consequences for the fetus, including changes in central nervous system development leading to permanent neurologic alterations and cognitive and behavioral deficits. Individuals affected by prenatal alcohol exposure, including those with and without fetal alcohol syndrome, are identified under the umbrella of fetal alcohol spectrum disorders (FASD). While studies of humans and animal models confirm that even low to moderate levels of exposure can have detrimental effects, critical doses of such exposure have yet to be specified and the most clinically significant and consistent consequences occur following heavy exposure. These consequences are pervasive, devastating, and can result in long-term dysfunction. This chapter summarizes the neurobehavioral, neurologic, and neuroimaging characteristics of FASD, focusing primarily on clinical research of individuals with histories of heavy prenatal alcohol exposure, although studies of lower levels of exposure, particularly prospective, longitudinal studies, will be discussed where relevant. PMID:25307589

  7. Ocular involvement in fetal alcohol spectrum disorder: a review.

    PubMed

    Brennan, Deirdre; Giles, Seamus

    2014-01-01

    Fetal Alcohol Syndrome (FAS), the most severe manifestation of Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD) is considered the leading non-hereditary cause of mental retardation and neurological deficit in the Western world. There lie a huge associated human cost to both FASD victims and their families and a considerable financial burden. This problem is being tackled on many fronts including community awareness programs, biomarker development for fetal alcohol exposure, research into preventative treatments and the development of more robust diagnostic systems for the early detection of FASD. Although ethanol can affect many of the major systems of the body, the eye is a primary target. Ocular aberrations including optic nerve hypoplasia, tortuosity of retinal vessels, coloboma and microphthalmia are frequently observed in children diagnosed with FAS. In this regard, ocular involvement in FAS has gained importance, particularly in relation to early diagnosis and identification of FAS. Furthermore, our considerable knowledge of the molecular mechanisms underlying eye development has provided a powerful tool for the investigation of the teratogenic actions of ethanol. In this review, we initially provide an overview of FASD in terms of historical background, epidemiology and current status. Next, we explore the role of ocular involvement in FASD and the use of eye measurements in the diagnosis of FAS. Lastly, we review how current knowledge of early eye development can be used to gain new insights into the molecular mechanisms of ethanol teratogenicity with particular reference to the sonic hedgehog pathway. PMID:24502600

  8. Fetal Leydig Cells: Progenitor Cell Review Maintenance and Differentiation

    PubMed Central

    BARSOUM, IVRAYM B.; YAO, HUMPHREY H.-C.

    2012-01-01

    In most eutherian mammals, sexually dimorphic masculinization is established by androgen-producing fetal Leydig cells in the embryonic testis. Fetal Leydig cells, which lack expression of the testis-determining gene SRY, arise after the appearance of SRY-expressing Sertoli cells. Therefore, the appearance and differentiation of fetal Leydig cells are probably regulated by factors derived from Sertoli cells. Results from mouse genetic models have revealed that maintenance and differentiation of fetal Leydig cell population depends upon a balance between differentiation-promoting and differentiation-suppressing mechanisms. Although paracrine signaling via Sertoli cell–derived Hedgehog ligands is necessary and sufficient for fetal Leydig cell formation, cell-cell interaction via Notch signaling and intracellular transcription factors such as POD1 are implicated as suppressors of fetal Leydig cell differentiation. This review provides a model that summarizes the recent findings in fetal Leydig cell development. PMID:19875489

  9. Fetal alcohol syndrome

    MedlinePlus

    Fetal alcohol syndrome is growth, mental, and physical problems that may occur in a baby when a mother drinks ... A baby with fetal alcohol syndrome may have the following symptoms: Poor growth while the baby is in the womb and after birth Decreased muscle ...

  10. Chronic hypoxia in pregnancy affects thymus development in Balb/c mouse offspring via IL2 Signaling.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Xiaopeng; Zhou, Xiuwen; Li, Lingjun; Sun, Miao; Gao, Qingqing; Zhang, Pengjie; Tang, Jiaqi; He, Yu; Zhu, Di; Xu, Zhice

    2016-04-01

    Hypoxia during pregnancy can adversely affect development. This study, addressed the impact of prenatal hypoxia on thymus development in the rodent offspring. Pregnant Balb/c mice were exposed to hypoxia or normoxia during pregnancy, and the thymuses of their offspring were tested. Chronic hypoxia during pregnancy resulted in significantly decreased fetal body weight, with an increased thymus-to-body weight ratio. Histological analysis revealed a smaller cortical zone in the thymus of the offspring exposed to hypoxia. A reduction in the cortical T lymphocyte population corresponded to increased mRNA abundance of caspase 3 (Casp3) and decreased expression of the proliferation marker Ki-67 (Mki67). Differences in T lymphocyte sub-populations in the thymus further indicate that thymus development in offspring was retarded or stagnated by prenatal hypoxia. The abundance of IL2 and its receptor was reduced in the thymus following prenatal hypoxia. This was accompanied by an increase in thymus HIF1A and IKKβ and a decrease in phosphorylated NFKB, MAP2K1, and MAPK1/3 compared to control pregnancies. Together, these results implicate deficiencies in IL2-mediated signaling as one source of prenatal-hypoxia-impaired thymus development. PMID:26918321

  11. Exogenous retroelement integration in sperm and embryos affects preimplantation development.

    PubMed

    Kitsou, C; Lazaros, L; Bellou, S; Vartholomatos, G; Sakaloglou, P; Hatzi, E; Markoula, S; Zikopoulos, K; Tzavaras, T; Georgiou, I

    2016-09-01

    Retroelement transcripts are present in male and female gametes, where they are typically regulated by methylation, noncoding RNAs and transcription factors. Such transcripts are required for occurrence of retrotransposition events, while failure of retrotransposition control may exert negative effects on cellular function and proliferation. In order to investigate the occurrence of retrotransposition events in mouse epididymal spermatozoa and to address the impact of uncontrolled retroelement RNA expression in early preimplantation embryos, we performed in vitro fertilization experiments using spermatozoa preincubated with plasmid vectors containing the human retroelements LINE-1, HERVK-10 or the mouse retroelement VL30, tagged with an enhanced green fluorescence (EGFP) gene-based cassette. Retrotransposition events in mouse spermatozoa and embryos were detected using PCR, FACS analysis and confocal microscopy. Our findings show that: (i) sperm cell incorporates exogenous retroelements and favors retrotransposition events, (ii) the inhibition of spermatozoa reverse transcriptase can decrease the retrotransposition frequency in sperm cells, (iii) spermatozoa can transfer exogenous human or mouse retroelements to the oocyte during fertilization and (iv) retroelement RNA overexpression affects embryo morphology and impairs preimplantation development. These findings suggest that the integration of exogenous retroelements in the sperm genome, as well as their transfer into the mouse oocyte, could give rise to new retrotransposition events and genetic alterations in mouse spermatozoa and embryos. PMID:27450800

  12. Large-scale mapping of mutations affecting zebrafish development

    PubMed Central

    Geisler, Robert; Rauch, Gerd-Jörg; Geiger-Rudolph, Silke; Albrecht, Andrea; van Bebber, Frauke; Berger, Andrea; Busch-Nentwich, Elisabeth; Dahm, Ralf; Dekens, Marcus PS; Dooley, Christopher; Elli, Alexandra F; Gehring, Ines; Geiger, Horst; Geisler, Maria; Glaser, Stefanie; Holley, Scott; Huber, Matthias; Kerr, Andy; Kirn, Anette; Knirsch, Martina; Konantz, Martina; Küchler, Axel M; Maderspacher, Florian; Neuhauss, Stephan C; Nicolson, Teresa; Ober, Elke A; Praeg, Elke; Ray, Russell; Rentzsch, Brit; Rick, Jens M; Rief, Eva; Schauerte, Heike E; Schepp, Carsten P; Schönberger, Ulrike; Schonthaler, Helia B; Seiler, Christoph; Sidi, Samuel; Söllner, Christian; Wehner, Anja; Weiler, Christian; Nüsslein-Volhard, Christiane

    2007-01-01

    Background Large-scale mutagenesis screens in the zebrafish employing the mutagen ENU have isolated several hundred mutant loci that represent putative developmental control genes. In order to realize the potential of such screens, systematic genetic mapping of the mutations is necessary. Here we report on a large-scale effort to map the mutations generated in mutagenesis screening at the Max Planck Institute for Developmental Biology by genome scanning with microsatellite markers. Results We have selected a set of microsatellite markers and developed methods and scoring criteria suitable for efficient, high-throughput genome scanning. We have used these methods to successfully obtain a rough map position for 319 mutant loci from the Tübingen I mutagenesis screen and subsequent screening of the mutant collection. For 277 of these the corresponding gene is not yet identified. Mapping was successful for 80 % of the tested loci. By comparing 21 mutation and gene positions of cloned mutations we have validated the correctness of our linkage group assignments and estimated the standard error of our map positions to be approximately 6 cM. Conclusion By obtaining rough map positions for over 300 zebrafish loci with developmental phenotypes, we have generated a dataset that will be useful not only for cloning of the affected genes, but also to suggest allelism of mutations with similar phenotypes that will be identified in future screens. Furthermore this work validates the usefulness of our methodology for rapid, systematic and inexpensive microsatellite mapping of zebrafish mutations. PMID:17212827

  13. Factors affecting epilepsy development and epilepsy prognosis in cerebral palsy.

    PubMed

    Mert, Gulen Gul; Incecik, Faruk; Altunbasak, Sakir; Herguner, Ozlem; Mert, Mustafa Kurthan; Kiris, Nurcihan; Unal, Ilker

    2011-08-01

    A study was conducted between November 2006 and October 2009 to determine the factors predicting the presence and prognosis of epilepsy in patients with cerebral palsy. We enrolled 2 groups of patients: 42 with cerebral palsy in group 1 and 56 patients with cerebral palsy and epilepsy in group 2. The subjects in group 2 were considered to have good epilepsy prognosis if they were free of seizures for the previous year; otherwise they were considered to have poor epilepsy prognosis. In group 2, neonatal epilepsy, family history of epilepsy, and moderate to severe mental retardation were significantly higher than in group 1 (P < 0.05). In univariate analysis, neonatal seizures, epileptic activity as measured by electroencephalography, and polytherapy were found to be predictors of poor epilepsy prognosis. Additionally, the need for long-term medication to control seizures unfavorably affects prognosis. In logistic regression analysis, neonatal seizure and interictal epileptic activity in electroencephalography were found to be independent predictors of poor epilepsy outcome. In addition, logistic regression analysis revealed that increasing age reduces the success of epilepsy treatment. Neonatal seizures, family history of epilepsy, and mental retardation were found to be important and independent predictors of development of epilepsy in patients with cerebral palsy. PMID:21763948

  14. Whole transcriptome data analysis of zebrafish mutants affecting muscle development.

    PubMed

    Armant, Olivier; Gourain, Victor; Etard, Christelle; Strähle, Uwe

    2016-09-01

    Formation of the contractile myofibril of the skeletal muscle is a complex process which when perturbed leads to muscular dystrophy. Herein, we provide a mRNAseq dataset on three different zebrafish mutants affecting muscle organization during embryogenesis. These comprise the myosin folding chaperone unc45b (unc45b-/-), heat shock protein 90aa1.1 (hsp90aa1.1-/-) and the acetylcholine esterase (ache-/-) gene. The transcriptome analysis was performed in duplicate experiments at 72 h post-fertilization (hpf) for all three mutants, with two additional times of development (24 hpf and 48 hpf) for unc45b-/-. A total of 20 samples were analyzed by hierarchical clustering for differential gene expression. The data from this study support the observation made in Etard et al. (2015) [1] (http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s13059-015-0825-8) that a failure to fold myosin activates a unique transcriptional program in the skeletal muscles that is different from that induced in stressed muscle cells. PMID:27274534

  15. Oligosaccharides Affect Performance and Gut Development of Broiler Chickens

    PubMed Central

    Ao, Z.; Choct, M.

    2013-01-01

    The effects of oligosaccharide supplementation on the growth performance, flock uniformity and GIT development of broiler chickens were investigated. Four diets, one negative control, one positive control supplemented with zinc-bacitracin, and two test diets supplemented with mannoligosaccharide (MOS) and fructooligosaccharide (FOS), were used for the experiment. Birds given MOS or FOS had improved body weight (BW) and feed efficiency (FCR), compared to those fed the negative control diet during the 35-d trial period. The effect on FCR became less apparent when the birds got older. FOS and MOS supplementation reduced the pancreas weight as a percentage of BW, with an effect similar to that of the antibiotic, at 35 d of age. Birds given MOS tended to have a heavier bursa (p = 0.164) and lower spleen/bursa weight ratio (p = 0.102) at 35 d of age. MOS and Zn-bacitracin showed a clear improvement on flock uniformity, compared to FOS. The mortality rate was not affected by FOS or MOS. PMID:25049713

  16. Gestational Age Assessment in the Ghana Randomized Air Pollution and Health Study (GRAPHS): Ultrasound Capacity Building, Fetal Biometry Protocol Development, and Ongoing Quality Control

    PubMed Central

    Boamah, Ellen A; Asante, KP; Ae-Ngibise, KA; Kinney, Patrick L; Jack, Darby W; Manu, Grace; Azindow, Irene T; Owusu-Agyei, Seth

    2014-01-01

    Background Four million premature deaths occur yearly as a result of smoke from cooking fires. The Ghana Randomized Air Pollution and Health Study (GRAPHS) is underway in the Kintampo North municipality and South district of rural Ghana to evaluate the impact of improved cook stoves introduced during pregnancy on birth weight and childhood pneumonia. These hypotheses are being tested in a cluster-randomized intervention trial among 1415 maternal-infant pairs within 35 communities assigned to a control arm (traditional cooking) or one of two intervention arms (cooking with an improved biomass stove; cooking with liquefied petroleum gas stoves). Objective The trial is designed to ensure delivery of the stove intervention prior to the period of maximal fetal growth. To answer questions about the impact of household air pollution on pregnancy outcome, accurate gestational age assessment is critical. This manuscript describes in detail the development of the gestational dating protocol, intensive ultrasound training involved, ultrasound capacity building, and ultrasound quality control program. Methods Ultrasound training occurred in several phases over the course of 2 years. Training included a basic obstetric ultrasound course offered to all midwives performing antenatal care at the two study hospitals, followed by a more intense period of hands-on training focused on fetal biometry for a select group of providers demonstrating aptitude in the basic course. A standard operating procedure was developed describing how to obtain all fetal biometric measurements. Consensus was obtained on how biometric images are used in the trial to establish gestational age and estimate the delivery date. An ongoing ultrasound quality control program including the use of an image scorecard was also designed. Results Publication of trial results is anticipated in late 2016. Conclusions Use of ultrasound should be strongly considered in field-based trials involving pregnant women to

  17. Effecting Affect: Developing a Positive Attitude to Primary Mathematics Learning

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Sparrow, Len; Hurst, Chris

    2010-01-01

    Most adults' attitudes to mathematics come from their experiences of mathematics in school when they were children. Children's mathematical worlds are complex places containing both cognitive and affective elements. One cannot ignore the affective domain if one wishes to understand children's mathematical learning. Teacher education students…

  18. Cost of fetal alcohol spectrum disorder in Canada

    PubMed Central

    Stade, Brenda; Ungar, Wendy J.; Stevens, Bonnie; Beyen, Joseph; Koren, Gideon

    2007-01-01

    QUESTION I have heard that thousands of Canadian kids are affected by fetal alcohol spectrum disorders. Has there been any attempt to estimate what it costs our society? ANSWER In a recent Canadian study, the lifetime cost of fetal alcohol spectrum disorders was estimated at $1 million per case. With an estimated 4000 new cases yearly, this translates to $4 billion annually. PMID:17872844

  19. Concentrations of Mineral in Amniotic Fluid and Their Relations to Selected Maternal and Fetal Parameters.

    PubMed

    Suliburska, J; Kocyłowski, R; Komorowicz, I; Grzesiak, M; Bogdański, P; Barałkiewicz, D

    2016-07-01

    The concentrations of various trace elements in amniotic fluid (AF) change over the course of pregnancy, with gestational age and fetus growth. The aim of the present study was to evaluate the concentrations of selected essential and toxic elements in AF and their relations to maternal and fetal parameters. The study was carried out in 39 pregnant women, aged 34.6 ± 4.7 years, between weeks 16 and 26 of gestation. Amniotic fluid samples were obtained during the standard procedure of amniocentesis in high-risk patients for chromosomal abnormalities. An inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry (ICP-MS) technique was used to determine the levels of Al, As, Ba, Cd, Co, Cr, Cu, Mg, Mn, Ni, Sr, U, and V in AF. Body mass and blood pressure were measured in all the women. The basic parameters of fetal development were also assayed. It was found that the age of the mother, the gender of the fetus, and the week of the pregnancy may affect the concentrations of mineral in the amniotic fluid. Moreover, several significant correlations between the essential and toxic elements and maternal and fetal parameters were observed. In particular, negative and positive correlations between fetal parameters and magnesium and copper levels in AF, respectively, were seen. The present findings demonstrate the association between minerals in AF and fetal development. PMID:26547910

  20. Fetal exposure to (+/-)-methylenedioxymethamphetamine in utero enhances the development and metabolism of serotonergic neurons in three-dimensional reaggregate tissue culture.

    PubMed

    Won, Lisa; Bubula, Nancy; Heller, Alfred

    2002-07-30

    Methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA, Ecstasy) is a potent psychomotor stimulant with neurotoxic potential which is widely abused by females of childbearing age raising serious public health concerns in terms of exposure of the fetus to the drug. The current study was conducted using the three-dimensional reaggregate tissue culture system as an approach to the assessment of risk to fetal brain cells following exposure to MDMA during early to mid-gestation. In this culture system, the serotonergic and dopaminergic mesencephalic-striatal projections are reconstructed and develop with a time course similar to that observed in vivo. Pregnant C57Bl/6J mice were injected twice daily with 40 mg/kg MDMA or saline from gestational day 6 to 13. On gestational day 14, mesencephalic and striatal cells from MDMA- and saline-exposed embryos were used to prepare reaggregate cultures. Levels of neurotransmitters and their metabolites in the reaggregates and culture medium were assessed at 22 and 36 days of culture. There was a long-term enhancement of serotonergic development and metabolism by fetal exposure to MDMA as evidenced by increased reaggregate serotonin levels as well as the elevated production and release of 5-hydroxyindoleacetic acid in cultures prepared from MDMA-exposed embryos which persisted for up to 36 days of culture. Dopaminergic neurons in such cultures also exhibited increased metabolism as indicated by elevated levels of dihydroxyphenylacetic acid in reaggregate tissue and culture medium. The data obtained suggest that exposure to MDMA in utero during early to mid-gestation may result in more active serotonergic and dopaminergic neurons. PMID:12128255

  1. Fetal and Neonatal Alloimmune Thrombocytopenia

    PubMed Central

    CONSTANTINESCU, Simona; ZAMFIRESCU, Vlad; VLADAREANU, Prof. Radu

    2012-01-01

    ABSTRACT Fetal and neonatal alloimmune thrombocytopenia (FNAIT) is the commonest cause of severe neonatal thrombocytopenia. FNAIT is usually suspected in neonates with bleeding or severe, unexplained, and/or isolated postnatal thrombocytopenia. Affected fetuses should be managed in referral centers with experience in the ante-natal management of FNAIT. Close collaboration is required between specialists in fetal medicine, obstetrics, hematology/transfusion medicine, and pediatrics. The mother and her partner should be provided with detailed information about FNAIT and its potential clinical consequences, and the benefits and risks of different approaches to ante-natal management. There has been huge progress in the ante-natal management of FNAIT over the last 20 years. However, the ideal effective treatment without significant side effects to the mother or fetus has yet to be determined. Key issues: Fetal and neonatal alloimmune thrombocytopenia is a condition that is underdiagnosed. Immunization seldom occurs in the first pregnancy. Immunization takes place in association with delivery in most cases. Anti-HPA-1a level is a predictor for the severity of thrombocytopenia. PMID:23482913

  2. Children with Fetal Alcohol Syndrome and Fetal Alcohol Effects: Patterns of Performance on IQ and Visual Motor Ability.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kopera-Frye, Karen; Zielinski, Sharon

    This study explored relationships between intelligence and visual motor ability and patterns of impairment of visual motor ability in children prenatally affected by alcohol. Fourteen children (mean age 8.2 years) diagnosed with fetal alcohol syndrome (FAS) and 50 children with possible fetal alcohol effects (FAE) were assessed with the Bender…

  3. Fetal origin of vascular aging

    PubMed Central

    Pitale, Shailesh; Sahasrabuddhe, Anagha

    2011-01-01

    Aging is increasingly regarded as an independent risk factor for development of cardiovascular diseases such as atherosclerosis and hypertension and their complications (e.g. MI and Stroke). It is well known that vascular disease evolve over decades with progressive accumulation of cellular and extracellular materials and many inflammatory processes. Metabolic syndrome, obesity and diabetes are conventionally recognized as risk factors for development of coronary vascular disease (CVD). These conditions are known to accelerate ageing process in general and vascular ageing in particular. Adverse events during intrauterine life may programme organ growth and favour disease later in life, popularly known as, ‘Barker's Hypothesis’. The notion of fetal programming implies that during critical periods of prenatal growth, changes in the hormonal and nutritional milieu of the conceptus may alter the full expression of the fetal genome, leading to permanent effects on a range of physiological. PMID:22145131

  4. A Look at Recent Legal Developments Affecting Residential Living.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Miller, Thomas E.; And Others

    1979-01-01

    Reviews court decisions concerning search and seizure, intervisitation between sexes, canvassing and solicitation, and damage assessments. College administrators must rely on fairness, ethics and sound educational philosophies in the design of policies affecting residence halls. (JAC)

  5. Fetal magnetic resonance imaging in obstetric practice

    PubMed Central

    Köşüş, Aydın; Köşüş, Nermin; Usluoğulları, Betül; Duran, Müzeyyen; Turhan, Nilgün Öztürk; Tekşam, Mehmet

    2011-01-01

    Ultrasonography (USG) is the primary imaging method for prenatal diagnosis of fetal abnormalities since its discovery. Although it is the primary method of fetal imaging, it cannot provide sufficient information about the fetus in some conditions such as maternal obesity, oligohydramnios and engagement of the fetal head. At this stage, magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) facilitates examination by providing more specific information. The need and importance of fetal MRI applications further increased by the intrauterine surgery which is currently gaining popularity. Some advantages of fetal MRI over USG are the good texture of contrast, a greater study area and visualization of the lesion and neighbourhood relations, independence of the operators. Also it is not affected by maternal obesity and severe oligohydramnios. However, MRI is inadequate in detecting fetal limb and cardiac abnormalities when compared to USG. MRI is not used routinely in pregnancy. It is used in situations where nonionizing imaging methods are inadequate or ionizing radiation is required in pregnant women. It is not recommended during the first trimester. Contrast agent (Godalinium) is not used during pregnancy. It is believed that MRI is not harmful to the fetus, although the biological risk of MRI application is not known. MRI technique is superior to USG in the detection of corpus callosum dysgenesis, third-trimester evaluation of posterior fossa malformations, bilateral renal agenesis, diaphragmatic hernia and assessment of lung maturation. Especially, it is the method of choice for evaluation of central nervous system (CNS) abnormalities. Fetal MRI has a complementary role with USG. It provides important information for prenatal diagnosis, increases diagnostic accuracy, and in turn affects the prenatal treatment, prenatal interventions and birth plan. PMID:24591956

  6. Fetal magnetic resonance imaging in obstetric practice.

    PubMed

    Köşüş, Aydın; Köşüş, Nermin; Usluoğulları, Betül; Duran, Müzeyyen; Turhan, Nilgün Öztürk; Tekşam, Mehmet

    2011-01-01

    Ultrasonography (USG) is the primary imaging method for prenatal diagnosis of fetal abnormalities since its discovery. Although it is the primary method of fetal imaging, it cannot provide sufficient information about the fetus in some conditions such as maternal obesity, oligohydramnios and engagement of the fetal head. At this stage, magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) facilitates examination by providing more specific information. The need and importance of fetal MRI applications further increased by the intrauterine surgery which is currently gaining popularity. Some advantages of fetal MRI over USG are the good texture of contrast, a greater study area and visualization of the lesion and neighbourhood relations, independence of the operators. Also it is not affected by maternal obesity and severe oligohydramnios. However, MRI is inadequate in detecting fetal limb and cardiac abnormalities when compared to USG. MRI is not used routinely in pregnancy. It is used in situations where nonionizing imaging methods are inadequate or ionizing radiation is required in pregnant women. It is not recommended during the first trimester. Contrast agent (Godalinium) is not used during pregnancy. It is believed that MRI is not harmful to the fetus, although the biological risk of MRI application is not known. MRI technique is superior to USG in the detection of corpus callosum dysgenesis, third-trimester evaluation of posterior fossa malformations, bilateral renal agenesis, diaphragmatic hernia and assessment of lung maturation. Especially, it is the method of choice for evaluation of central nervous system (CNS) abnormalities. Fetal MRI has a complementary role with USG. It provides important information for prenatal diagnosis, increases diagnostic accuracy, and in turn affects the prenatal treatment, prenatal interventions and birth plan. PMID:24591956

  7. Increased reprogramming of human fetal hepatocytes compared with adult hepatocytes in feeder-free conditions.

    PubMed

    Hansel, Marc C; Gramignoli, Roberto; Blake, William; Davila, Julio; Skvorak, Kristen; Dorko, Kenneth; Tahan, Veysel; Lee, Brian R; Tafaleng, Edgar; Guzman-Lepe, Jorge; Soto-Gutierrez, Alejandro; Fox, Ira J; Strom, Stephen C

    2014-01-01

    Hepatocyte transplantation has been used to treat liver disease. The availability of cells for these procedures is quite limited. Human embryonic stem cells (hESCs) and induced pluripotent stem cells (hiPSCs) may be a useful source of hepatocytes for basic research and transplantation if efficient and effective differentiation protocols were developed and problems with tumorigenicity could be overcome. Recent evidence suggests that the cell of origin may affect hiPSC differentiation. Thus, hiPSCs generated from hepatocytes may differentiate back to hepatocytes more efficiently than hiPSCs from other cell types. We examined the efficiency of reprogramming adult and fetal human hepatocytes. The present studies report the generation of 40 hiPSC lines from primary human hepatocytes under feeder-free conditions. Of these, 37 hiPSC lines were generated from fetal hepatocytes, 2 hiPSC lines from normal hepatocytes, and 1 hiPSC line from hepatocytes of a patient with Crigler-Najjar syndrome, type 1. All lines were confirmed reprogrammed and expressed markers of pluripotency by gene expression, flow cytometry, immunocytochemistry, and teratoma formation. Fetal hepatocytes were reprogrammed at a frequency over 50-fold higher than adult hepatocytes. Adult hepatocytes were only reprogrammed with six factors, while fetal hepatocytes could be reprogrammed with three (OCT4, SOX2, NANOG) or four factors (OCT4, SOX2, NANOG, LIN28 or OCT4, SOX2, KLF4, C-MYC). The increased reprogramming efficiency of fetal cells was not due to increased transduction efficiency or vector toxicity. These studies confirm that hiPSCs can be generated from adult and fetal hepatocytes including those with genetic diseases. Fetal hepatocytes reprogram much more efficiently than adult hepatocytes, although both could serve as useful sources of hiPSC-derived hepatocytes for basic research or transplantation. PMID:23394081

  8. Oxidative Stress in Mouse Sperm Impairs Embryo Development, Fetal Growth and Alters Adiposity and Glucose Regulation in Female Offspring

    PubMed Central

    Lane, Michelle; McPherson, Nicole O.; Fullston, Tod; Spillane, Marni; Sandeman, Lauren; Kang, Wan Xian; Zander-Fox, Deirdre L.

    2014-01-01

    Paternal health cues are able to program the health of the next generation however the mechanism for this transmission is unknown. Reactive oxygen species (ROS) are increased in many paternal pathologies, some of which program offspring health, and are known to induce DNA damage and alter the methylation pattern of chromatin. We therefore investigated whether a chemically induced increase of ROS in sperm impairs embryo, pregnancy and offspring health. Mouse sperm was exposed to 1500 µM of hydrogen peroxide (H2O2), which induced oxidative damage, however did not affect sperm motility or the ability to bind and fertilize an oocyte. Sperm treated with H2O2 delayed on-time development of subsequent embryos, decreased the ratio of inner cell mass cells (ICM) in the resulting blastocyst and reduced implantation rates. Crown-rump length at day 18 of gestation was also reduced in offspring produced by H2O2 treated sperm. Female offspring from H2O2 treated sperm were smaller, became glucose intolerant and accumulated increased levels of adipose tissue compared to control female offspring. Interestingly male offspring phenotype was less severe with increases in fat depots only seen at 4 weeks of age, which was restored to that of control offspring later in life, demonstrating sex-specific impacts on offspring. This study implicates elevated sperm ROS concentrations, which are common to many paternal health pathologies, as a mediator of programming offspring for metabolic syndrome and obesity. PMID:25006800

  9. Student Cognitive and Affective Development in the Context of Classroom-Level Curriculum Development

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Shawer, Saad Fathy; Gilmore, Deanna; Banks-Joseph, Susan Rae

    2008-01-01

    This qualitative study examined the impact of teacher curriculum approaches (curriculum-transmitter/curriculum-developer/curriculum-maker) on student cognitive change (reading, writing, speaking, and listening abilities) and their affective change (motivation and interests). This study's conceptual framework was grounded in teacher curriculum…

  10. Two-step regulation of Ad4BP/SF-1 gene transcription during fetal adrenal development: initiation by a Hox-Pbx1-Prep1 complex and maintenance via autoregulation by Ad4BP/SF-1.

    PubMed

    Zubair, Mohamad; Ishihara, Satoru; Oka, Sanae; Okumura, Katsuzumi; Morohashi, Ken-ichirou

    2006-06-01

    The orphan nuclear receptor Ad4BP/SF-1 (adrenal 4 binding protein/steroidogenic factor 1) is essential for the proper development and function of reproductive and steroidogenic tissues. Although the expression of Ad4BP/SF-1 is specific for those tissues, the mechanisms underlying this tissue-specific expression remain unknown. In this study, we used transgenic mouse assays to examine the regulation of the tissue-specific expression of Ad4BP/SF-1. An investigation of the entire Ad4BP/SF-1 gene locus revealed a fetal adrenal enhancer (FAdE) in intron 4 containing highly conserved binding sites for Pbx-Prep, Pbx-Hox, and Ad4BP/SF-1. Transgenic assays revealed that the Ad4 sites, together with Ad4BP/SF-1, develop an autoregulatory loop and thereby maintain transcription, while the Pbx/Prep and Pbx/Hox sites initiate transcription prior to the establishment of the autoregulatory loop. Indeed, a limited number of Hox family members were found to be expressed in the adrenal primordia. Whether a true fetal-type adrenal cortex is present in mice remained controversial, and this argument was complicated by the postnatal development of the so-called X zone. Using transgenic mice with lacZ driven by the FAdE, we clearly identified a fetal adrenal cortex in mice, and the X zone is the fetal adrenal cells accumulated at the juxtamedullary region after birth. PMID:16705164

  11. Fetal programming and early identification of newborns at high risk of free radical-mediated diseases

    PubMed Central

    Perrone, Serafina; Santacroce, Antonino; Picardi, Anna; Buonocore, Giuseppe

    2016-01-01

    Nowadays metabolic syndrome represents a real outbreak affecting society. Paradoxically, pediatricians must feel involved in fighting this condition because of the latest evidences of developmental origins of adult diseases. Fetal programming occurs when the normal fetal development is disrupted by an abnormal insult applied to a critical point in intrauterine life. Placenta assumes a pivotal role in programming the fetal experience in utero due to the adaptive changes in structure and function. Pregnancy complications such as diabetes, intrauterine growth restriction, pre-eclampsia, and hypoxia are associated with placental dysfunction and programming. Many experimental studies have been conducted to explain the phenotypic consequences of fetal-placental perturbations that predispose to the genesis of metabolic syndrome, obesity, diabetes, hyperinsulinemia, hypertension, and cardiovascular disease in adulthood. In recent years, elucidating the mechanisms involved in such kind of process has become the challenge of scientific research. Oxidative stress may be the general underlying mechanism that links altered placental function to fetal programming. Maternal diabetes, prenatal hypoxic/ischaemic events, inflammatory/infective insults are specific triggers for an acute increase in free radicals generation. Early identification of fetuses and newborns at high risk of oxidative damage may be crucial to decrease infant and adult morbidity. PMID:27170927

  12. Fetal programming and early identification of newborns at high risk of free radical-mediated diseases.

    PubMed

    Perrone, Serafina; Santacroce, Antonino; Picardi, Anna; Buonocore, Giuseppe

    2016-05-01

    Nowadays metabolic syndrome represents a real outbreak affecting society. Paradoxically, pediatricians must feel involved in fighting this condition because of the latest evidences of developmental origins of adult diseases. Fetal programming occurs when the normal fetal development is disrupted by an abnormal insult applied to a critical point in intrauterine life. Placenta assumes a pivotal role in programming the fetal experience in utero due to the adaptive changes in structure and function. Pregnancy complications such as diabetes, intrauterine growth restriction, pre-eclampsia, and hypoxia are associated with placental dysfunction and programming. Many experimental studies have been conducted to explain the phenotypic consequences of fetal-placental perturbations that predispose to the genesis of metabolic syndrome, obesity, diabetes, hyperinsulinemia, hypertension, and cardiovascular disease in adulthood. In recent years, elucidating the mechanisms involved in such kind of process has become the challenge of scientific research. Oxidative stress may be the general underlying mechanism that links altered placental function to fetal programming. Maternal diabetes, prenatal hypoxic/ischaemic events, inflammatory/infective insults are specific triggers for an acute increase in free radicals generation. Early identification of fetuses and newborns at high risk of oxidative damage may be crucial to decrease infant and adult morbidity. PMID:27170927

  13. Inutero exposure to diisononyl phthalate caused testicular dysgenesis of rat fetal testis.

    PubMed

    Li, Linxi; Bu, Tiao; Su, Huina; Chen, Zhichuan; Liang, Yuyuan; Zhang, Gaolong; Zhu, Danyan; Shan, Yuanyuan; Xu, Renai; Hu, Yuanyuan; Li, Junwei; Hu, Guoxin; Lian, Qingquan; Ge, Ren-Shan

    2015-01-22

    Diisononyl phthalate (DINP) is a synthetic material that has been widely used as a substitute for other plasticizers prohibited due to reproductive toxicity in consumer products. Some phthalates have been associated with testicular dysgenesis syndrome in male fetus when female pregnant dams were exposed to them. The present study investigated effects of DINP on fetal Leydig cell function and testis development. Female pregnant Sprague Dawley rats received control vehicle (corn oil) or DINP (10, 100, 500, and 1000 mg/kg) by oral gavage from gestational day (GD) 12 to 21. At GD 21.5, testicular testosterone production, fetal Leydig cell numbers and distribution, testicular gene and protein expression levels were examined. DINP showed dose-dependent increase of fetal Leydig cell aggregation with the low observed adverse-effect level (LOAEL) of 10 mg/kg and multinucleated gonocyte with LOAEL of 100 mg/kg. At 10 mg/kg, DINP also significantly increased fetal Leydig cell size, but inhibited insulin-like 3 and 3β-hydroxysteroid dehydrogenase gene expression and protein levels. DINP inhibited testicular testosterone levels at 1000 mg/kg. The results indicate that in utero exposure to DINP affects the expression levels of some fetal Leydig cell steroidogenic genes, gonocyte multinucleation and Leydig cell aggregation. PMID:25445723

  14. Effects of in Utero Exposure to Dicyclohexyl Phthalate on Rat Fetal Leydig Cells

    PubMed Central

    Li, Xiaoheng; Chen, Xiaomin; Hu, Guoxin; Li, Linxi; Su, Huina; Wang, Yiyan; Chen, Dongxin; Zhu, Qiqi; Li, Chao; Li, Junwei; Wang, Mingcang; Lian, Qingquan; Ge, Ren-Shan

    2016-01-01

    Dicyclohexyl phthalate (DCHP) is one of the phthalate plasticizers. The objective of the present study was to investigate the effects of DCHP on fetal Leydig cell distribution and function as well as testis development. Female pregnant Sprague Dawley dams orally received vehicle (corn oil, control) or DCHP (10, 100, and 500 mg/kg/day) from gestational day (GD) 12 to GD 21. At GD 21.5, testicular testosterone production, fetal Leydig cell number and distribution, testicular gene and protein expression levels were examined. DCHP administration produced a dose-dependent increase of the incidence of multinucleated gonocytes at ≥100 mg/kg. DCHP dose-dependently increased abnormal fetal Leydig cell aggregation and decreased fetal Leydig cell size, cytoplasmic size, and nuclear size at ≥10 mg/kg. DCHP reduced the expression levels of steroidogenesis-related genes (including Star, Hsd3b1, and Hsd17b3) and testis-descent related gene Insl3 as well as protein levels of 3β-hydroxysteroid dehydrogenase 1 (HSD3B1) and insulin-like 3 (INSL3) at ≥10 mg/kg. DCHP significantly inhibited testicular testosterone levels at ≥100 mg/kg. The results indicate that in utero exposure to DCHP affects the expression levels of fetal Leydig cell steroidogenic genes and results in the occurrence of multinucleated gonocytes and Leydig cell aggregation. PMID:26907321

  15. Fetal membrane patch and biomimetic adhesive coacervates as a sealant for fetoscopic defects.

    PubMed

    Mann, Lovepreet K; Papanna, Ramesha; Moise, Kenneth J; Byrd, Robert H; Popek, Edwina J; Kaur, Sarbjit; Tseng, Scheffer C G; Stewart, Russell J

    2012-07-01

    Iatrogenic preterm premature rupture of membranes after fetoscopic procedures affects 10-47% of patients, secondary to the non-healing nature of membranes and the separation of layers during the entry. In this study we developed an in vitro model to mimic the uterine wall-fetal membrane interface using a water column with one end sealed with human fetal membranes and poultry breast, and a defect was created with an 11 French trocar. Further, a fetal membrane patch in conjunction with multiphase adhesive coacervates modeled after the sandcastle worm bioadhesive was tested for sealing of an iatrogenic defect. The sealant withstood an additional traction of 12 g for 30-60 min and turbulence of the water column without leakage of fluid or slippage. The adhesive is non-toxic when in direct contact with human fetal membranes in an organ culture setting. A fetal membrane patch with multiphase adhesive complex coacervates may help to seal the defect and prevent iatrogenic preterm premature rupture of the membranes. PMID:22373817

  16. Collagenase and tissue plasminogen activator production in developing rat calvariae: normal progression despite fetal exposure to microgravity

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Davis, B. A.; Sipe, B.; Gershan, L. A.; Fiacco, G. J.; Lorenz, T. C.; Jeffrey, J. J.; Partridge, N. C.

    1998-01-01

    Exposure to zero gravity has been shown to cause a decrease in bone formation. This implicates osteoblasts as the gravity-sensing cell in bone. Osteoblasts also are known to produce neutral proteinases, including collagenase and tissue plasminogen activator (tPA), which are thought to be important in bone development and remodeling. The present study investigated the effects of zero gravity on development of calvariae and their expression of collagenase and tPA. After in utero exposure to zero gravity for 9 days on the NASA STS-70 space shuttle mission, the calvariae of rat pups were examined by immunohistochemistry for the presence and location of these two proteinases. The ages of the pups were from gestational day 20 (G20) to postnatal (PN) day 35. Both collagenase and tPA were found to be present at all ages examined, with the greatest amount of both proteinases present in the PN14 rats. At later ages, high amounts were maintained for tPA but collagenase decreased substantially between ages PN21 to PN35. The location of collagenase was found to be associated with bone-lining cells, osteoblasts, osteocytes, and in the matrix along cement lines. In contrast, tPA was associated with endothelial cells lining the blood vessels entering bone. The presence and developmental expression of these two proteinases appeared to be unaffected by the exposure to zero gravity. The calvarial thickness of the pups was also examined; again the exposure to zero gravity showed little to no effect on the growth of the calvariae. Notably, from G20 to PN14, calvarial thickness increased dramatically, reaching a plateau after this age. It was apparent that elevated collagenase expression correlated with rapid bone growth in the period from G20 to PN14. To conclude, collagenase and tPA are present during the development of rat calvariae. Despite being produced by the same cell in vitro, i.e., the osteoblast, they are located in distinctly different places in bone in vivo. Their presence

  17. Fetal echocardiographic evaluation of the bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus).

    PubMed

    Sklansky, Mark; Renner, Michael; Clough, Patricia; Levine, Gregg; Campbell, Michelle; Stone, Rae; Schmitt, Todd; Chang, Ruey-Kang; Shannon-Rodriguez, Jayne

    2010-03-01

    In humans, fetal echocardiography represents the most important tool for the assessment of the cardiovascular well-being of the fetus. However, because of logistic, anatomic, and behavioral challenges, detailed fetal echocardiographic evaluation of marine mammals has not been previously described. Because the application of fetal echocardiography to cetaceans could have both clinical and academic importance, an approach to evaluating the fetal dolphin's cardiovascular status was developed with conventional, fetal echocardiographic techniques developed in humans. Eight singleton fetal bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) were evaluated, each between 6 and 11 mo gestation; six fetuses underwent two fetal echocardiographic evaluations each, four at 3-mo intervals, and two at 0.5-mo intervals. Evaluations were performed without sedation, using conventional, portable ultrasound systems. Multiple transducers, probes, and maternal dolphin positions were used to optimize image quality. Fetal echocardiography included two-dimensional imaging and color flow mapping of the heart and great arteries, as well as pulsed Doppler evaluation of the umbilical artery and vein. Thorough evaluations of the fetal dolphins' cardiovascular status were performed, with the greatest resolution between 8 and 9 mo gestation. With the use of published human fetal echocardiographic findings for comparison, fetal echocardiography demonstrated normal structure and function of the heart and great arteries, including the pulmonary veins, inferior vena cava, right and left atria, foramen ovale, tricuspid and mitral valves, right and left ventricles, ventricular septum, pulmonary and aortic valves, main pulmonary artery and ascending aorta, and ductus arteriosus. Pulsed Doppler techniques demonstrated normal umbilical arterial and venous waveforms, and color flow mapping demonstrated absence of significant valvar regurgitation. Fetal echocardiography, particularly between 8 and 9 mo gestation, can

  18. Affect Regulation Training (ART) for Alcohol Use Disorders: Development of a Novel Intervention for Negative Affect Drinkers

    PubMed Central

    Stasiewicz, Paul R.; Bradizza, Clara M.; Schlauch, Robert C.; Coffey, Scott F.; Gulliver, Suzy B.; Gudleski, Gregory; Bole, Christopher W.

    2013-01-01

    Although negative affect is a common precipitant of alcohol relapse, there are few interventions for alcohol dependence that specifically target negative affect. In this Stage 1a/1b treatment development study, several affect regulation strategies (e.g., mindfulness, prolonged exposure, distress tolerance) were combined to create a new treatment supplement called Affect Regulation Training (ART), which could be added to enhance Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy (CBT) for alcohol dependence. A draft therapy manual was given to therapists and treatment experts before being administered to several patients who also provided input. After two rounds of manual development (Stage 1a), a pilot randomized clinical trial (N = 77) of alcohol-dependent outpatients who reported drinking often in negative affect situations was conducted (Stage 1b). Participants received 12-weekly, 90-minute sessions of either CBT for alcohol dependence plus ART (CBT + ART) or CBT plus a healthy lifestyles control condition (CBT + HLS). Baseline, end-of-treatment, and 3- and 6-month posttreatment interviews were conducted. For both treatment conditions, participant ratings of treatment satisfaction were high, with CBT + ART rated significantly higher. Drinking outcome results indicated greater reductions in alcohol use for CBT + ART when compared to CBT + HLS, with moderate effect sizes for percent days abstinent, drinks per day, drinks per drinking day, and percent heavy drinking days. Overall, findings support further research on affect regulation interventions for negative affect drinkers. PMID:23876455

  19. Fetal epigenetic programming of adipokines.

    PubMed

    Houde, Andrée-Anne; Hivert, Marie-France; Bouchard, Luigi

    2013-01-01

    Epigenetics generates a considerable interest in the field of research on complex traits, including obesity and diabetes. Recently, we reported a number of epipolymorphisms in the placental leptin and adiponectin genes associated with maternal hyperglycemia during pregnancy. Our results suggest that DNA methylation could partly explain the link between early exposure to a detrimental fetal environment and an increased risk to develop obesity and diabetes later in life. This brief report discusses the potential importance of adipokine epigenetic changes in fetal metabolic programming. Additionally, preliminary data showing similarities between methylation variations of different tissues and cell types will be presented along with the challenges and future perspectives of this emerging field of research. PMID:23700551

  20. Fetal Alcohol Syndrome

    MedlinePlus

    ... drink other beverages instead, such as water, fruit juices or milk. Questions to Ask Your Doctor If your baby was born with fetal alcohol syndrome: What health problems does my baby have? Does my baby ...

  1. Fetal alcohol syndrome

    MedlinePlus

    Alcohol in pregnancy; Alcohol-related birth defects; Fetal alcohol effects; FAS ... the baby is in the womb and after birth Decreased muscle tone and ... Heart defects such as ventricular septal defect (VSD) or atrial ...

  2. Child Studies through Fantasy: Cognitive-Affective Patterns in Development.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gould, Rosalind

    This book presents a study of cognitive-affective interdependence as shown in children's fantasy behavior. The systems of Piaget and Freud are the foundation of analysis. The study data consist of approximately one hundred verbatim recordings of the dramatic play of 3-, 4-, and 5-year-olds (in groups or alone) collected by trained teachers in a…

  3. The First Four Months: Development of Affect, Cognition, and Synchrony.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Guillory, Andrea; And Others

    The relationship between affective responsiveness, synchrony of mother/infant interaction, and developmental status was examined in 32 normal infants (eight infants each at the ages of 4, 8, 12, and 16 weeks). Data were collected in infants' homes and included (1) naturalistic mother/infant play; (2) presentation of auditory, tactile, visual, and…

  4. The fetal brain sparing response to hypoxia: physiological mechanisms.

    PubMed

    Giussani, Dino A

    2016-03-01

    How the fetus withstands an environment of reduced oxygenation during life in the womb has been a vibrant area of research since this field was introduced by Joseph Barcroft, a century ago. Studies spanning five decades have since used the chronically instrumented fetal sheep preparation to investigate the fetal compensatory responses to hypoxia. This defence is contingent on the fetal cardiovascular system, which in late gestation adopts strategies to decrease oxygen consumption and redistribute the cardiac output away from peripheral vascular beds and towards essential circulations, such as those perfusing the brain. The introduction of simultaneous measurement of blood flow in the fetal carotid and femoral circulations by ultrasonic transducers has permitted investigation of the dynamics of the fetal brain sparing response for the first time. Now we know that major components of fetal brain sparing during acute hypoxia are triggered exclusively by a carotid chemoreflex and that they are modified by endocrine agents and the recently discovered vascular oxidant tone. The latter is determined by the interaction between nitric oxide and reactive oxygen species. The fetal brain sparing response matures as the fetus approaches term, in association with the prepartum increase in fetal plasma cortisol, and treatment of the preterm fetus with clinically relevant doses of synthetic steroids mimics this maturation. Despite intense interest into how the fetal brain sparing response may be affected by adverse intrauterine conditions, this area of research has been comparatively scant, but it is likely to take centre stage in the near future. PMID:26496004

  5. The CS Sulfation Motifs 4C3, 7D4, 3B3[-]; and Perlecan Identify Stem Cell Populations and Their Niches, Activated Progenitor Cells and Transitional Areas of Tissue Development in the Fetal Human Elbow.

    PubMed

    Hayes, Anthony J; Hughes, Clare E; Smith, Susan M; Caterson, Bruce; Little, Christopher B; Melrose, James

    2016-06-01

    We compared the immunohistochemical distribution of (1) the novel chondroitin sulfate (CS) sulfation motifs 7D4, 4C3, and 3B3[-], (2) native heparan sulfate (HS) and Δ-HS "stubs" generated by heparitinase III digestion and (3) the HS-proteoglycan (PG), perlecan, in the fetal human elbow joint. Putative stem cell populations associated with hair bulbs, humeral perichondrium, humeral and ulnar rudiment stromal/perivascular tissues expressed the CS motifs 4C3, 7D4, and 3B3[-] along with perlecan in close association but not colocalized. Chondrocytes in the presumptive articular cartilage of the fetal elbow expressed the 4C3 and 7D4 CS sulfation motifs consistent with earlier studies on the expression of these motifs in knee cartilage following joint cavitation. This study also indicated that hair bulbs, skin, perichondrium, and rudiment stroma were all perlecan-rich progenitor cell niches that contributed to the organization and development of the human fetal elbow joint and associated connective tissues. One of the difficulties in determining the precise role of stem cells in tissue development and repair processes is their short engraftment period and the lack of specific markers, which differentiate the activated stem cell lineages from the resident cells. The CS sulfation motifs 7D4, 4C3, and 3B3[-] decorate cell surface PGs on activated stem/progenitor cells and thus can be used to identify these cells in transitional areas of tissue development and in repair tissues and may be applicable to determining a more precise mode of action of stem cells in these processes. Isolation of perlecan from 12 to 14 week gestational age fetal knee rudiments demonstrated that perlecan in these fetal tissues was a HS-CS hybrid PG further supporting roles for CS in tissue development. PMID:27068010

  6. Fetal Alcohol Syndrome (FAS)--A Review.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Holzman, Ian R.

    1982-01-01

    At least 30 percent of newborn children of alcoholic mothers are affected severely by the fetal alcohol syndrome and 40-45 percent show some stigmata. Risks to offspring of mothers who drink occasionally or binge drink are not clear, but the danger is probably greatest in the first trimester of pregnancy. (CMG)

  7. Biomedical Instruments for Fetal and Neonatal Surveillance

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rolfe, P.; Scopesi, F.; Serra, G.

    2006-10-01

    Specialised instruments have been developed to aid the care of the fetus and the newborn baby. Miniature sensors using optical, electrical, chemical, mechanical and magnetic principles have been produced for capturing key measurands. These include temperature, pressure, flow and dimension, as well as several specific molecules such as glucose, oxygen and carbon dioxide. During pregnancy ultrasound imaging and blood flow techniques provide valuable information concerning fetal abnormalities, fetal growth, fetal breathing and fetal heart rate. Signal processing and pattern recognition can be useful for deriving indicators of fetal distress and clinical status, based on biopotentials as well as ultrasound signals. Fetal pH measurement is a critical requirement during labour and delivery. The intensive care of ill preterm babies involves provision of an optimal thermal environment and respiratory support. Monitoring of blood gas and acid-base status is essential, and this involves both blood sampling for in vitro analysis as well as the use of invasive or non-invasive sensors. For the future it will be vital that the technologies used are subjected to controlled trials to establish benefit or otherwise.

  8. The Fetal Modified Myocardial Performance Index: Is Automation the Future?

    PubMed Central

    Maheshwari, Priya; Henry, Amanda; Welsh, Alec W.

    2015-01-01

    The fetal modified myocardial performance index (Mod-MPI) is a noninvasive, pulsed-wave Doppler-derived measure of global myocardial function. This review assesses the progress in technical refinements of its measurement and the potential for automation to be the crucial next step. The Mod-MPI is a ratio of isovolumetric to ejection time cardiac time intervals, and the potential for the left ventricular Mod-MPI as a tool to clinically assess fetal cardiac function is well-established. However, there are wide variations in published reference ranges, as (1) a standardised method of selecting cardiac time intervals used in Mod-MPI calculation has not been established; (2) cardiac time interval measurement currently requires manual, inherently subjective placement of callipers on Doppler ultrasound waveforms; and (3) ultrasound machine settings and ultrasound system type have been found to affect Mod-MPI measurement. Collectively these factors create potential for significant inter- and intraobserver measurement variability. Automated measurement of the Mod-MPI may be the next key development which propels the Mod-MPI into routine clinical use. A novel automated system of Mod-MPI measurement is briefly presented and its implications for the future of the Mod-MPI in fetal cardiology are discussed. PMID:26185751

  9. Assessment of fetal testis function and postnatal development of the male rat following in utero exposure to diethylhexyl phthalate, dipentyl phthalate, diisobutyl phthalate, diisoheptyl phthalate and diisononyl phthalate

    EPA Science Inventory

    Phthalate esters are a large class of plasticizer compounds widely used in many consumer product applications. Some phthalates induce male fetal endocrine toxicity and reproductive malformations through disruption of hormone production during sexual differentiation. Regulatory ag...

  10. Automatic real-time tracking of fetal mouth in fetoscopic video sequence for supporting fetal surgeries

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Xu, Rong; Xie, Tianliang; Ohya, Jun; Zhang, Bo; Sato, Yoshinobu; Fujie, Masakatsu G.

    2013-03-01

    Recently, a minimally invasive surgery (MIS) called fetoscopic tracheal occlusion (FETO) was developed to treat severe congenital diaphragmatic hernia (CDH) via fetoscopy, by which a detachable balloon is placed into the fetal trachea for preventing pulmonary hypoplasia through increasing the pressure of the chest cavity. This surgery is so dangerous that a supporting system for navigating surgeries is deemed necessary. In this paper, to guide a surgical tool to be inserted into the fetal trachea, an automatic approach is proposed to detect and track the fetal face and mouth via fetoscopic video sequencing. More specifically, the AdaBoost algorithm is utilized as a classifier to detect the fetal face based on Haarlike features, which calculate the difference between the sums of the pixel intensities in each adjacent region at a specific location in a detection window. Then, the CamShift algorithm based on an iterative search in a color histogram is applied to track the fetal face, and the fetal mouth is fitted by an ellipse detected via an improved iterative randomized Hough transform approach. The experimental results demonstrate that the proposed automatic approach can accurately detect and track the fetal face and mouth in real-time in a fetoscopic video sequence, as well as provide an effective and timely feedback to the robot control system of the surgical tool for FETO surgeries.

  11. The suppression of maternal-fetal leukemia inhibitory factor signal relay pathway by maternal immune activation impairs brain development in mice.

    PubMed

    Tsukada, Tsuyoshi; Simamura, Eriko; Shimada, Hiroki; Arai, Takuma; Higashi, Nobuaki; Akai, Takuya; Iizuka, Hideaki; Hatta, Toshihisa

    2015-01-01

    Recent studies in rodents suggest that maternal immune activation (MIA) by viral infection is associated with schizophrenia and autism in offspring. Although maternal IL-6 is though t to be a possible mediator relating MIA induced these neuropsychiatric disorders, the mechanism remains to be elucidated. Previously, we reported that the maternal leukemia inhibitory factor (LIF)-placental ACTH-fetal LIF signaling relay pathway (maternal-fetal LIF signal relay) promotes neurogenesis of fetal cerebrum in rats. Here we report that the maternal-fetal LIF signal relay in mice is suppressed by injection of polyriboinosinic-polyribocytidylic acid into dams, which induces MIA at 12.5 days post-coitum. Maternal IL-6 levels and gene expression of placental suppressor of cytokine signaling 3 (Socs3) increased according to the severity of MIA and gene expression of placental Socs3 correlated with maternal IL-6 levels. Furthermore, we show that MIA causes reduction of LIF level in the fetal cerebrospinal fluid, resulting in the decreased neurogenesis in the cerebrum. These findings suggest that maternal IL-6 interferes the maternal-fetal LIF signal relay by inducing SOCS3 in the placenta and leads to decreased neurogenesis. PMID:26043040

  12. The Suppression of Maternal–Fetal Leukemia Inhibitory Factor Signal Relay Pathway by Maternal Immune Activation Impairs Brain Development in Mice

    PubMed Central

    Tsukada, Tsuyoshi; Simamura, Eriko; Shimada, Hiroki; Arai, Takuma; Higashi, Nobuaki; Akai, Takuya; Iizuka, Hideaki; Hatta, Toshihisa

    2015-01-01

    Recent studies in rodents suggest that maternal immune activation (MIA) by viral infection is associated with schizophrenia and autism in offspring. Although maternal IL-6 is though t to be a possible mediator relating MIA induced these neuropsychiatric disorders, the mechanism remains to be elucidated. Previously, we reported that the maternal leukemia inhibitory factor (LIF)–placental ACTH–fetal LIF signaling relay pathway (maternal–fetal LIF signal relay) promotes neurogenesis of fetal cerebrum in rats. Here we report that the maternal–fetal LIF signal relay in mice is suppressed by injection of polyriboinosinic-polyribocytidylic acid into dams, which induces MIA at 12.5 days post-coitum. Maternal IL-6 levels and gene expression of placental suppressor of cytokine signaling 3 (Socs3) increased according to the severity of MIA and gene expression of placental Socs3 correlated with maternal IL-6 levels. Furthermore, we show that MIA causes reduction of LIF level in the fetal cerebrospinal fluid, resulting in the decreased neurogenesis in the cerebrum. These findings suggest that maternal IL-6 interferes the maternal–fetal LIF signal relay by inducing SOCS3 in the placenta and leads to decreased neurogenesis. PMID:26043040

  13. ALTERATIONS IN MATERNAL-FETAL CELLULAR TRAFFICKING AFTER FETAL SURGERY

    PubMed Central

    Saadai, Payam; Lee, Tzong-Hae; Bautista, Geoanna; Gonzales, Kelly D.; Nijagal, Amar; Busch, Michael P.; Kim, CJ; Romero, Roberto; Lee, Hanmin; Hirose, Shinjiro; Rand, Larry; Miniati, Douglas; Farmer, Diana L.; MacKenzie, Tippi C.

    2012-01-01

    Background/Purpose Bi-directional trafficking of cells between the mother and the fetus is routine in pregnancy and a component of maternal-fetal tolerance. Changes in fetal-to-maternal cellular trafficking have been reported in prenatal complications, but maternal-to-fetal trafficking has never been studied in the context of fetal intervention. We hypothesized that patients undergoing open fetal surgery would have altered maternal-fetal cellular trafficking. Methods Cellular trafficking was analyzed in patients with myelomeningocele (MMC) who underwent open fetal surgical repair (n=5), MMC patients who had routine postnatal repair (n=6), and normal term patients (n=9). As a control for the fetal operation, trafficking was also analyzed in patients who were delivered by an ex utero intrapartum treatment (EXIT) procedure (n=6). Microchimerism in maternal and cord blood was determined using quantitative real-time PCR for non-shared alleles. Results Maternal-to-fetal trafficking was significantly increased in patients who underwent open fetal surgery for MMC compared to normal controls, postnatal MMC repair, and EXIT patients. There were no differences in fetal-to-maternal cell trafficking between groups. Conclusion Patients undergoing open fetal surgery for MMC have elevated levels of maternal microchimerism. These results suggest altered trafficking and/or increased proliferation of maternal cells in fetal blood and may have important implications for preterm labor. PMID:22703775

  14. Fetal pig pancreas. Preparation and assessment of tissue for transplantation, and its in vivo development and function in athymic (nude) mice.

    PubMed

    Thompson, S C; Mandel, T E

    1990-03-01

    The possibility of using xenogeneic islets for transplantation in insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus (IDDM) necessitates characterization of their potential for growth and functional differentiation. Fetal pig pancreas (FPP) of various gestational ages was examined with respect to morphology, ability to produce insulin before and during culture, and development and function in nude mice. Insulin-containing beta cells were present, but distinct islets were not apparent in FPP even in late gestation, and did not develop during culture. FPP remained viable and produced insulin for up to 30 days in vitro. Mitotic figures were seen in cultured tissue. Culture on a gelfoam raft resulted in more viable tissue than free-floating culture. Culture in a high concentration of O2 (90% O2/10% CO2) was detrimental compared with culture in 10% CO2 in air. Responses to static incubation in secretagogues showed that IMBX, theophylline, and tolbutamide all stimulated insulin secretion, but high glucose concentration (5 g/L), arginine, and leucine did not. The potential of this tissue for growth and its ability to regulate blood glucose levels appropriately were tested in athymic (nu/nu) mice. Pancreatic tissue from fetuses as young as 4 weeks gestation showed growth after transplantation into athymic mice, with representation of the major pancreatic endocrine cells demonstrated by selective immunochemical staining. The increase in the size of the grafts showed an impressive proliferative capacity, and histology confirmed mitotic activity and islet structure in the graft. The amount of endocrine tissue in grafts reflected the condition of the explants at the time of grafting, and prolonged culture times were detrimental to eventual graft size. Functional capability of the grafted FPP to release insulin in response to hyperglycemia was tested by transplantation into mice made diabetic with streptozotocin. Blood glucose levels, animal weights and survival, and the histological

  15. Collaborative Development: A New Culture Affects an Old Organization

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Phelps, Jim; Ruzicka, Terry

    2008-01-01

    At the University of Wisconsin (UW)-Madison, the Registrar's Office and the Division of Information Technology (DoIT) apply a collaborative development process to joint projects. This model differs from a "waterfall" model in that technical and functional staff work closely to develop requirements, prototypes, and the product throughout its life…

  16. Development of a Behavioral Affective Relationship Scale for Encounter Research.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Shadish, William R., Jr.; Zarle, Thomas

    The paper outlines several studies over a two-year period to develop a self-report and observer-rating measure of sensitivity/encounter group outcome. The initial form of the scale was taken from McMillan (1971) who developed a measure of 16 categories of group outcome; McMillan's work indicated the scale had high reliability. Subsequent study…

  17. Increased systolic load causes adverse remodeling of fetal aortic and mitral valves.

    PubMed

    Tibayan, Frederick A; Louey, Samantha; Jonker, Sonnet; Espinoza, Herbert; Chattergoon, Natasha; You, Fanglei; Thornburg, Kent L; Giraud, George

    2015-12-15

    While abnormal hemodynamic forces alter fetal myocardial growth, little is known about whether such insults affect fetal cardiac valve development. We hypothesized that chronically elevated systolic load would detrimentally alter fetal valve growth. Chronically instrumented fetal sheep received either a continuous infusion of adult sheep plasma to increase fetal blood pressure, or a lactated Ringer's infusion as a volume control beginning on day 126 ± 4 of gestation. After 8 days, mean arterial pressure was higher in the plasma infusion group (63.0 mmHg vs. 41.8 mmHg, P < 0.05). Mitral annular septal-lateral diameter (11.9 mm vs. 9.1 mm, P < 0.05), anterior leaflet length (7.7 mm vs. 6.4 mm, P < 0.05), and posterior leaflet length (P2; 4.0 mm vs. 3.0 mm, P < 0.05) were greater in the elevated load group. mRNA levels of Notch-1, TGF-β2, Wnt-2b, BMP-1, and versican were suppressed in aortic and mitral valve leaflets; elastin and α1 type I collagen mRNA levels were suppressed in the aortic valves only. We conclude that sustained elevated arterial pressure load on the fetal heart valve leads to anatomic remodeling and, surprisingly, suppression of signaling and extracellular matrix genes that are important to valve development. These novel findings have important implications on the developmental origins of valve disease and may have long-term consequences on valve function and durability. PMID:26354842

  18. Escobar Syndrome Is a Prenatal Myasthenia Caused by Disruption of the Acetylcholine Receptor Fetal γ Subunit

    PubMed Central

    Hoffmann, Katrin; Müller, Juliane S.; Stricker, Sigmar; Megarbane, Andre; Rajab, Anna; Lindner, Tom H.; Cohen, Monika; Chouery, Eliane; Adaimy, Lynn; Ghanem, Ismat; Delague, Valerie; Boltshauser, Eugen; Talim, Beril; Horvath, Rita; Robinson, Peter N.; Lochmüller, Hanns; Hübner, Christoph; Mundlos, Stefan

    2006-01-01

    Escobar syndrome is a form of arthrogryposis multiplex congenita and features joint contractures, pterygia, and respiratory distress. Similar findings occur in newborns exposed to nicotinergic acetylcholine receptor (AChR) antibodies from myasthenic mothers. We performed linkage studies in families with Escobar syndrome and identified eight mutations within the γ-subunit gene (CHRNG) of the AChR. Our functional studies show that γ-subunit mutations prevent the correct localization of the fetal AChR in human embryonic kidney–cell membranes and that the expression pattern in prenatal mice corresponds to the human clinical phenotype. AChRs have five subunits. Two α, one β, and one δ subunit are always present. By switching γ to ɛ subunits in late fetal development, fetal AChRs are gradually replaced by adult AChRs. Fetal and adult AChRs are essential for neuromuscular signal transduction. In addition, the fetal AChRs seem to be the guide for the primary encounter of axon and muscle. Because of this important function in organogenesis, human mutations in the γ subunit were thought to be lethal, as they are in γ-knockout mice. In contrast, many mutations in other subunits have been found to be viable but cause postnatally persisting or beginning myasthenic syndromes. We conclude that Escobar syndrome is an inherited fetal myasthenic disease that also affects neuromuscular organogenesis. Because γ expression is restricted to early development, patients have no myasthenic symptoms later in life. This is the major difference from mutations in the other AChR subunits and the striking parallel to the symptoms found in neonates with arthrogryposis when maternal AChR auto-antibodies crossed the placenta and caused the transient inactivation of the AChR pathway. PMID:16826520

  19. The workshop on energy development issues affecting Appalachia. Final report

    SciTech Connect

    Blaney, B.L.; Jelen, V.F.; Waldman, M.; Evans, J.; Bovee, R.

    1981-08-01

    This report describes the results of a workshop involving representatives of private industries, government agencies and public interest groups that was held in January of 1979 to raise and discuss issues related to Appalachian energy development.

  20. THE WORKSHOP ON ENERGY DEVELOPMENT ISSUES AFFECTING APPALACHIA

    EPA Science Inventory

    This report describes the results of a workshop involving representatives of private industries, government agencies and public interest groups that was held in January of 1979 to raise and discuss issues related to Appalachian energy development.

  1. 21 CFR 884.2900 - Fetal stethoscope.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-04-01

    ... Fetal stethoscope. (a) Identification. A fetal stethoscope is a device used for listening to fetal heart sounds. It is designed to transmit the fetal heart sounds not only through sound channels by...

  2. 21 CFR 884.2900 - Fetal stethoscope.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-04-01

    ... Fetal stethoscope. (a) Identification. A fetal stethoscope is a device used for listening to fetal heart sounds. It is designed to transmit the fetal heart sounds not only through sound channels by...

  3. 21 CFR 884.2900 - Fetal stethoscope.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-04-01

    ... Fetal stethoscope. (a) Identification. A fetal stethoscope is a device used for listening to fetal heart sounds. It is designed to transmit the fetal heart sounds not only through sound channels by...

  4. 21 CFR 884.2900 - Fetal stethoscope.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-04-01

    ... Fetal stethoscope. (a) Identification. A fetal stethoscope is a device used for listening to fetal heart sounds. It is designed to transmit the fetal heart sounds not only through sound channels by...

  5. 21 CFR 884.2900 - Fetal stethoscope.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-04-01

    ... Fetal stethoscope. (a) Identification. A fetal stethoscope is a device used for listening to fetal heart sounds. It is designed to transmit the fetal heart sounds not only through sound channels by...

  6. Rhizosphere microbiome assemblage is affected by plant development

    PubMed Central

    Chaparro, Jacqueline M; Badri, Dayakar V; Vivanco, Jorge M

    2014-01-01

    There is a concerted understanding of the ability of root exudates to influence the structure of rhizosphere microbial communities. However, our knowledge of the connection between plant development, root exudation and microbiome assemblage is limited. Here, we analyzed the structure of the rhizospheric bacterial community associated with Arabidopsis at four time points corresponding to distinct stages of plant development: seedling, vegetative, bolting and flowering. Overall, there were no significant differences in bacterial community structure, but we observed that the microbial community at the seedling stage was distinct from the other developmental time points. At a closer level, phylum such as Acidobacteria, Actinobacteria, Bacteroidetes, Cyanobacteria and specific genera within those phyla followed distinct patterns associated with plant development and root exudation. These results suggested that the plant can select a subset of microbes at different stages of development, presumably for specific functions. Accordingly, metatranscriptomics analysis of the rhizosphere microbiome revealed that 81 unique transcripts were significantly (P<0.05) expressed at different stages of plant development. For instance, genes involved in streptomycin synthesis were significantly induced at bolting and flowering stages, presumably for disease suppression. We surmise that plants secrete blends of compounds and specific phytochemicals in the root exudates that are differentially produced at distinct stages of development to help orchestrate rhizosphere microbiome assemblage. PMID:24196324

  7. Lactate metabolism in the fetal rabbit lung

    SciTech Connect

    Engle, M.J.; Brown, D.J.; Dooley, M.

    1986-05-01

    Lactate is frequently overlooked as a potential substrate for the fetal lung, even though it is present in the fetal circulation in concentrations as high as 8 mM. These high concentrations, coupled with the relatively low levels of glucose in the fetal blood, may indicate that lactate can substitute for glucose in pulmonary energy generation and phospholipid synthesis. A series of experiments was therefore undertaken in order to investigate the role of lactate in perinatal pulmonary development. Explants from 30 day gestation fetal rabbit lungs were incubated in Krebs-Ringer bicarbonate buffer supplemented with 3 mM (U-/sup 14/C)-glucose and varying levels of lactate. In the absence of medium lactate, fetal rabbit lung explants were capable of producing lactate at a rate of approximately 200 etamoles/mg protein/hour. The addition of lactate to the bathing medium immediately reduced net lactate production and above 4 mM, fetal rabbit lung explants became net utilizers of lactate. Media lactate concentrations of 2.5 mM, 5 mM and 10 mM also decreased glucose incorporation into total tissue disaturated phosphatidylcholine by approximately 20%, 35%, and 45%, respectively. Glucose incorporation into surfactant phosphatidylcholine was also reduced by approximately 50%, when lactate was present in the incubation medium at a concentration of 5 mM. Additional experiments also revealed that fetal lung lactate dehydrogenase activity was almost twice that found in the adult rabbit lung. These data indicate that lactate may be an important carbon source for the developing lung and could be a significant component in the manufacture of surfactant phosphatidylcholine during late gestation.

  8. Surface wind observations affected by agricultural development over Northwest China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Han, Songjun; Tang, Qiuhong; Zhang, Xuezhen; Xu, Di; Kou, Lihang

    2016-05-01

    Meteorological stations in Northwest China are surrounded by large proportions of cultivated land. The relations between the change of surface wind speed and the cultivated land fractions (CF) within a 4 km radius at 135 meteorological stations over arid Northwest China are investigated. Stations with larger CF experi