Pregnancy

Scientists Grow Working Human Brain Circuits

Researchers at the Stanford University School of Medicine have successfully grown the first-ever working 3D brain circuits in a petri dish. Writing in the journal Nature, they say the network of living cells will allow us to study how the human brain develops.

Scientists have been culturing brain cells in the lab for some time now. But previous projects have produced only flat sheets of cells and tissue, which can’t really come close to recreating the three-dimensional conditions inside our heads. The Stanford researchers were especially interested in the way brain cells in a developing fetus can join up together to create networks.

“We’ve never been able to recapitulate these human-brain developmental events in a dish before,” senior author Sergiu Pasca, MD said in a statement.

Studying real-life pregnant women and their fetuses can also be ethically and technically tricky, which means there’s still a…

Blue Ivy Kisses Beyonce’s Baby Bump In Adorable Montage Of Easter Celebration

Beyonce positively radiated in an adorable Easter video as Blue Ivy sweetly kissed her baby bump! You have to see precious family moments that will absolutely warm your heart!

We just cannot get enough of Beyonce’s outstanding pregnancy style! The expecting mother of twins shared the cutest video from her Easter celebration. Blue Ivy, 5, Tina Knowles, 63, and Kelly Rowland, 36, all made appearances as they partied it up with the Easter Bunny. Blue even kissed her mom’s bump and it was beyond precious!

Bey obviously made a stellar music choice to accompany her little vid. Bill Withers‘ classic “Lovely Day” played in the background as you got to watch the perfection that was Queen…

Pregnant Beyoncé Was One Sassy Mama at Easter Party With Kelly Rowland and Their Kids

It was very Beyoncé Easter!

Her mother Tina Knowles Lawson had last weekend posted on Instagram a photo from their family’s holiday celebration, showing her with the pregnant singer and fellow Destiny’s Child alum Kelly Rowland, as well a video.

On Sunday, Beyoncé posted on her own page a video slideshow from the event, set to Bill Withers‘ 1977 hit “Lovely Day,” showing her, her and Jay Z‘s 5-year-old daughter Blue Ivy, and Kelly and her and husband Tim Witherspoon‘s 2-year-old son, Titan.

Bey wore a white gown with flowing elbow-length sleeves and platform sandals to the party. Blue Ivy wears a white knee-length dress, a…

Autism, ADHD risk not linked to prenatal exposure to antidepressants

pregnant woman
SEEKING TREATMENT Pregnant women coping with depression now may have one less thing to worry about: Prenatal exposure to antidepressants doesn’t raise autism risk, two new studies suggest.

Taking antidepressants during pregnancy does not increase the risk of autism or attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder, two new large studies suggest. Genetic or environmental influences, rather than prenatal exposure to the drugs, may have a greater influence on whether a child will develop these disorders. The studies are published online April 18 in JAMA.

Clinically, the message is “quite reassuring for practitioners and for mothers needing to make a decision about antidepressant use during pregnancy,” says psychiatrist Simone Vigod, a coauthor of one of the studies. Past research has questioned the safety of expectant moms taking antidepressants (SN: 6/5/10, p. 22).

“A mother’s mood disturbances during pregnancy are a big public health issue — they impact the health of mothers and their children,” says Tim Oberlander, a developmental pediatrician at the University of British Columbia in Vancouver. About one in 10 women develop a major depressive episode during pregnancy. “All treatment options should be explored. Nontreatment is never an option,” says Oberlander, who coauthored a commentary, also published in JAMA.

Untreated depression during pregnancy creates risks for the child, including poor fetal growth, preterm birth and developmental problems. Some women may benefit from psychotherapy alone. A more serious illness may require antidepressants. “Many of us have started to look at longer term child outcomes related to antidepressant exposure because mothers want to know about that in the decision-making process,” says Vigod, of Women’s College Hospital in Toronto.

Previous studies indicated that the use of antidepressants came with its own developmental risks: autism spectrum disorder, ADHD, premature birth and…

Vaccinating pregnant women protects newborns from whooping cough

pregnant woman getting a vaccine
A Tdap vaccine during pregnancy led to fewer newborns getting whooping cough in the two months after birth, a large study found.

When I was pregnant, my pronoun shifted automatically. My “I” turned into “we,” as in, “What are we going to eat for dinner?” and, “Should we sit in that hot tub?” I thought about that shift to the majestic plural as we got our Tdap shot in our third trimester.

The Tdap vaccine protects against tetanus, diphtheria and pertussis, or whooping cough. Doctors recommend that women receive a dose with each pregnancy because the diseases can be particularly dangerous for young babies. But good, hard evidence for the benefits of vaccinating women while pregnant instead of shortly after giving birth has been lacking. A new study of nearly 150,000 newborns fills that gap for whooping cough.

Researchers at the Kaiser Permanente Vaccine Study Center in Oakland, Calif., studied the medical records of mothers who gave birth to babies between 2010 and 2015. Overall, about 46 percent of the mothers received a Tdap vaccine at least 8 days before giving birth.

Seventeen of the 150,000 babies got whooping cough by the time…

Vaccinating pregnant women protects newborns from whooping cough

pregnant woman getting a vaccine
A Tdap vaccine during pregnancy led to fewer newborns getting whooping cough in the two months after birth, a large study found.

When I was pregnant, my pronoun shifted automatically. My “I” turned into “we,” as in, “What are we going to eat for dinner?” and, “Should we sit in that hot tub?” I thought about that shift to the majestic plural as we got our Tdap shot in our third trimester.

The Tdap vaccine protects against tetanus, diphtheria and pertussis, or whooping cough. Doctors recommend that women receive a dose with each pregnancy because the diseases can be particularly dangerous for young babies. But good, hard evidence for the benefits of vaccinating women while pregnant instead of shortly after giving birth has been lacking. A new study of nearly 150,000 newborns fills that gap for whooping cough.

Researchers at the Kaiser Permanente Vaccine Study Center in Oakland, Calif., studied the medical records of mothers who gave birth to babies between 2010 and 2015. Overall, about 46 percent of the mothers received a Tdap vaccine at least 8 days before giving birth.

Seventeen of the 150,000 babies got whooping cough by the time…