Stephanie, a college student without health insurance, visited her local Planned Parenthood for a check-up she could afford. Imagine her surprise and fright when told her Pap test results were abnormal. With empathy and compassion Planned Parenthood staff guided Stephanie through a biopsy and a screening that proved her to be cancer-free.
In a tour de force of reproductive biology, scientists in Japan have transformed mouse skin cells into eggs in a dish, and used those eggs to birth fertile pups. The report marks the first creation of eggs entirely outside a mouse. If the process could be made to work for humans, researchers could produce artificial eggs without needing to implant immature cells into ovaries to complete their development.
A Swedish medical researcher has taken another step toward eventually being able to engineer a custom-made human being. The experiment, first reported on NPR Thursday involves editing the genes of a developing human embryo.
One study now caught in that eddy is a report reporting behavioral problems in children born to women who took acetaminophen (popular brand name: Tylenol) during pregnancy. Evie Stergiakouli and George Davey Smith at the University of Bristol published it Monday in JAMA Pediatrics. They studied about 7,800 women and their children over the course of more than seven years.
The Zika virus destroys cells that give rise to the brain cortex in the developing fetus, scientists reported on Friday. The finding, published in the journal Cell Stem Cell, may help explain how the virus might cause microcephaly, or unusually small heads, in infants whose mothers are infected during pregnancy.
That something is not quite right about surrogacy has been evident for some time. Ever since the commercial surrogacy industry kicked off in the late 1970s, it has been awash with scandals, exploitation and abuse. From the infamous “Baby M” case – in which the mother changed her mind and was forced, in tears, to hand over her baby – to the Japanese billionaire who ordered 16 children from different Thai clinics. There has been a total commodification of human life: click; choose race and eye colour; pay, then have your child delivered.