Medical research

Researchers create real-time view of placental development in mice

Physicians and biomedical engineers at Duke University have developed a method to visualize the growth of a placenta throughout a mouse's pregnancy. By coupling an implantable window with ultrafast imaging tools, the approach ...


New study links placental oxygen levels to fetal brain development

A new study shows oxygenation levels in the placenta, formed during the last three months of fetal development, are an important predictor of cortical growth (development of the outermost layer of the brain or cerebral cortex) ...

Diseases, Conditions, Syndromes

Study finds no higher risk of miscarriage after COVID-19

LUMC research has shown that women who previously had a miscarriage due to COVID-19 are not at increased risk of having another miscarriage or a stillbirth. Nor are preventive drugs needed during the pregnancy.

Diseases, Conditions, Syndromes

Dangerous pregnancy complications linked to COVID-19

DNA changes consistent with life-threatening pregnancy complications have been found in the placentas of pregnant women infected by COVID-19, according to University of Queensland researchers. Their research paper is published ...

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The placenta is an organ unique to mammals that connects the developing fetus to the uterine wall. The placenta supplies the fetus with oxygen and food, and allows fetal waste to be disposed of via the maternal kidneys. The word placenta comes from the Latin for cake, from Greek plakóenta/plakoúnta, accusative of plakóeis/plakoús - πλακόεις, πλακούς, "flat, slab-like", referring to its round, flat appearance in humans. Protherial (egg-laying) and metatherial (marsupial) mammals produce a choriovitelline placenta that, while connected to the uterine wall, provides nutrients mainly derived from the egg sac. The placenta develops from the same sperm and egg cells that form the fetus, and functions as a fetomaternal organ with two components, the fetal part (Chorion frondosum), and the maternal part (Decidua basalis).

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