For the Week Ending September 25, 2022.
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Umbilical cord milking
Pushing umbilical cord blood into the baby’s abdomen, known as milking, may help “non-vigorous” newborns: those that are limp, pale, and barely breathing. The current standard of care for these newborns calls for immediate umbilical cord clamping so the baby can be resuscitated, but babies who got the cord milking fared better. Normal, vigorous babies don’t get their cords clamped for 30 seconds to a minute after birth so they get the benefits of the cord blood. Read more here.
This is important for you because sometimes low-tech, non-invasive therapies can work wonders.
Three parent embryos and babies are ok
Mitochondria, the “powerhouse of the cell” that provides molecular energy, all come from the egg; there is no room in sperm to carry them. If a woman has a mitochondrial disease she will thus pass it on to her offspring. Three parent embryos take the DNA-containing nucleus from the mother’s egg and put it into the egg of a donor with healthy mitochondria (the third parent), then fertilize the resulting egg with the father’s sperm. Although the procedure is controversial, the kids seem to be fine. Read more here.
This is important for you because like many reproductive technologies, this can be used to treat infertility and prevent disease–but it makes people squeamish, and is thus far not yet approved for use in the US.
Lions, tigers, and bears, certainly. But also seals, turtles, and penguins. Helena Bonham Carter narrates the babyhood of wild creatures in this new Netflix documentary. Watch the trailer here.
This is important for you because they are just so CUTE!
People are moving around a lot, and having kids later. Plus, regulations for fertility treatments (and their cost) vary from country to country and from state to state. And some people want to choose egg or sperm donors from specific geographical regions so their kids will look a certain way. Hence couriers to transport frozen eggs, sperm, and embryos across borders. They get special passes to ensure that their cargo doesn’t get X-rayed at the airport. Read more here.
This is important for you because “the shipping of gametes and embryos around the world is a growing part of a booming global fertility sector.”
The most popular article on The Pulse this week was Update on Monkeypox and Pregnancy for September 2022. Read it here.