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Fetal brain

Beth M Kline-Fath, Arnold C Merrow, Maria A Calvo-Garcia, Usha D Nagaraj, Howard M Saal
Fetal ventriculomegaly is a common referral for prenatal MRI, with possible etiologies being hydrocephalus and hydranencephaly. The underlying cause of hydranencephaly is unknown, but many have suggested that the characteristic supratentorial injury is related to idiopathic bilateral occlusions of the internal carotid arteries from an acquired or destructive event. Fowler syndrome is a rare genetic disorder that causes fetal akinesia and a proliferative vasculopathy that can result in an apparent hydranencephaly-hydrocephaly complex...
March 14, 2018: Pediatric Radiology
Ruobing Huang, Ana Namburete, Alison Noble
We present a general framework for automatic segmentation of fetal brain structures in ultrasound images inspired by recent advances in machine learning. The approach is based on a region descriptor that characterizes the shape and local intensity context of different neurological structures without explicit models. To validate our framework, we present experiments to segment two fetal brain structures of clinical importance that have quite different ultrasonic appearances-the corpus callosum (CC) and the choroid plexus (CP)...
January 2018: Journal of Medical Imaging
Jonas Hönig, Ivana Mižíková, Claudio Nardiello, David Emanuel Surate Solaligue, Maximilian J Daume, István Vadász, Konstantin Mayer, Susanne Herold, Stefan Günther, Werner Seeger, Rory Edward Morty
The emergence of microRNA as regulators of organogenesis and tissue differentiation has stimulated interest in the ablation of microRNA expression and function during discrete periods of development. To this end, inducible, conditional modulation of microRNA expression with doxycycline-based tetracycline-controlled transactivator and tamoxifen-based estrogen receptor systems has found widespread use. However, the induction agents and components of genome recombination systems negatively impact pregnancy, parturition, and post natal development; thereby limiting the use of these technologies between late gestation and the early post-natal period...
March 14, 2018: RNA
Adrienne M Antonson, Bindu Balakrishnan, Emily C Radlowski, Geraldine Petr, Rodney W Johnson
Maternal infection during pregnancy increases the risk of neurobehavioral problems in offspring. Evidence from rodent models indicates that the maternal immune response to infection can alter fetal brain development, particularly in the hippocampus. However, information on the effects of maternal viral infection on fetal brain development in gyrencephalic species is limited. Thus, the objective of this study was to assess several effects of maternal viral infection in the last one-third of gestation on hippocampal gene expression and development in fetal piglets...
March 14, 2018: Developmental Neuroscience
R Draganova, A Schollbach, F Schleger, J Braendle, S Brucker, H Abele, K O Kagan, D Wallwiener, A Fritsche, H Eswaran, H Preissl
The human fetal auditory system is functional around the 25th week of gestational age when the thalamocortical connections are established. Fetal magnetoencephalography (fMEG) provides evidence for fetal auditory brain responses to pure tones and syllables. Fifty-five pregnant women between 31 and 40 weeks of gestation were included in the study. Fetal MEG was recorded during the presentation of an amplitude modulated tone (AM) with a carrier frequency of 500 Hz to the maternal abdomen modulated by low modulation rates (MRs) - 2/s and 4/s, middle MR - 8/s and high MRs - 27/s, 42/s, 78/s and 91/s...
March 6, 2018: Hearing Research
Santa Mammana, Paolo Fagone, Eugenio Cavalli, Maria Sofia Basile, Maria Cristina Petralia, Ferdinando Nicoletti, Placido Bramanti, Emanuela Mazzon
In physiological conditions, different types of macrophages can be found within the central nervous system (CNS), i.e., microglia, meningeal macrophages, and perivascular (blood-brain barrier) and choroid plexus (blood-cerebrospinal fluid barrier) macrophages. Microglia and tissue-resident macrophages, as well as blood-borne monocytes, have different origins, as the former derive from yolk sac erythromyeloid precursors and the latter from the fetal liver or bone marrow. Accordingly, specific phenotypic patterns characterize each population...
March 13, 2018: International Journal of Molecular Sciences
Mònica Guxens, Małgorzata J Lubczyńska, Ryan L Muetzel, Albert Dalmau-Bueno, Vincent W V Jaddoe, Gerard Hoek, Aad van der Lugt, Frank C Verhulst, Tonya White, Bert Brunekreef, Henning Tiemeier, Hanan El Marroun
BACKGROUND: Air pollution exposure during fetal life has been related to impaired child neurodevelopment, but it is unclear if brain structural alterations underlie this association. The authors assessed whether air pollution exposure during fetal life alters brain morphology and whether these alterations mediate the association between air pollution exposure during fetal life and cognitive function in school-age children. METHODS: We used data from a population-based birth cohort set up in Rotterdam, The Netherlands (2002-2006)...
January 31, 2018: Biological Psychiatry
Carina Mallard, C Joakim Ek, Zinaida S Vexler
Central nervous system homeostasis is maintained by cellular barriers that protect the brain from external environmental changes and protect the CNS from harmful molecules and pathogens in the blood. Historically, for many years these barriers were thought as immature with limited functions during brain development. In this review, we will present advances in the understanding of the barrier systems during development and evidence to show that in fact the barriers serve many important neurodevelopmental functions and that fetal and newborn brains are well protected...
March 12, 2018: Journal of Physiology
Cloélia Tissier, Adriano Linzarini, Geneviève Allaire-Duquette, Katell Mevel, Nicolas Poirel, Sonia Dollfus, Olivier Etard, François Orliac, Carole Peyrin, Sylvain Charron, Armin Raznahan, Olivier Houdé, Grégoire Borst, Arnaud Cachia
Inhibitory control (IC) is a core executive function that enables humans to resist habits, temptations, or distractions. IC efficiency in childhood is a strong predictor of academic and professional success later in life. Based on analysis of the sulcal pattern, a qualitative feature of cortex anatomy determined during fetal life and stable during development, we searched for evidence that interindividual differences in IC partly trace back to prenatal processes. Using anatomical magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), we analyzed the sulcal pattern of two key regions of the IC neural network, the dorsal anterior cingulate cortex (ACC) and the inferior frontal cortex (IFC), which limits the inferior frontal gyrus...
January 2018: ENeuro
Sophiya Dulal, Frédérique Liégeois, David Osrin, Adam Kuczynski, Dharma S Manandhar, Bhim P Shrestha, Aman Sen, Naomi Saville, Delan Devakumar, Audrey Prost
Introduction: Multiple Micronutrient (MMN) supplementation during pregnancy can decrease the proportion of infants born low birth weight and small for gestational age. Supplementation could also enhance children's cognitive function by improving access to key nutrients during fetal brain development and increasing birth weight, especially in areas where undernutrition is common. We tested the hypothesis that children whose mothers received MMN supplementation during pregnancy would have higher intelligence in early adolescence compared with those receiving Iron and Folic Acid (IFA) only...
2018: BMJ Global Health
Fu-Sheng Chou, Pei-Shan Wang
Neuronal migration during fetal brain development is a well-coordinated process between the migrating neurons and their substrates, the basal processes of the radial glial cells (RGCs). The progeny-progenitor relationship between the migrating neurons and the RGCs in the developing fetal brain may make interpretations of the results difficult, because the variable in question may affect both the RGCs and the migrating neurons in different ways. A transplantation assay combining migrating cells and the scaffolding tissue from two different sources may circumvent this issue...
2018: Methods in Molecular Biology
Noriomi Eguchi, Ichiro Sora, Keiko Muguruma
Human brain development has generally been studied through the analysis of postmortem tissues because of limited access to fetal brain tissues. This approach, however, only provides information from the perspective of long-term development. To investigate the pathophysiology of neurodevelopmental disorders, it is necessary to understand the detailed mechanisms of human brain development. Recent advances in pluripotent stem cell (PSC) technologies enable us to establish in vitro brain models from human induced PSCs (hiPSCs), which can be used to examine the pathophysiological mechanisms of neurodevelopmental disorders...
March 7, 2018: Biochemical and Biophysical Research Communications
G Conte, S Milani, G Palumbo, G Talenti, S Boito, M Rustico, F Triulzi, A Righini, G Izzo, C Doneda, A Zolin, C Parazzini
BACKGROUND AND PURPOSE: Evaluation of biometry is a fundamental step in prenatal brain MR imaging. While different studies have reported reference centiles for MR imaging biometric data of fetuses in the late second and third trimesters of gestation, no one has reported them in fetuses in the early second trimester. We report centiles of normal MR imaging linear biometric data of a large cohort of fetal brains within 24 weeks of gestation. MATERIALS AND METHODS: From the data bases of 2 referral centers of fetal medicine, accounting for 3850 examinations, we retrospectively collected 169 prenatal brain MR imaging examinations of singleton pregnancies, between 20 and 24 weeks of gestational age, with normal brain anatomy at MR imaging and normal postnatal neurologic development...
March 8, 2018: AJNR. American Journal of Neuroradiology
Alexander Schmidt, Ernst G Schukat-Talamazzini, Janine Zöllkau, Adelina Pytlik, Sophia Leibl, Kathrin Kumm, Franziska Bode, Isabelle Kynass, Otto W Witte, Ekkehard Schleussner, Uwe Schneider, Dirk Hoyer
Adverse prenatal environmental influences to the developing fetus are associated with mental and cardiovascular disease in later life. Universal developmental characteristics such as self-organization, pattern formation, and adaptation in the growing information processing system have not yet been sufficiently analyzed with respect to description of normal fetal development and identification of developmental disturbances. Fetal heart rate patterns are the only non-invasive order parameter of the developing autonomic brain available with respect to the developing complex organ system...
March 5, 2018: Autonomic Neuroscience: Basic & Clinical
Shivakumar Subbanna, Nagaraja N Nagre, Madhu Shivakumar, Vikram Joshi, Delphine Psychoyos, Abdullah Kutlar, Nagavedi S Umapathy, Balapal S Basavarajappa
Alcohol exposure can affect brain development, leading to long-lasting behavioral problems, including cognitive impairment, which together is defined as fetal alcohol spectrum disorder (FASD). However, the fundamental mechanisms through which this occurs are largely unknown. In this study, we report that the exposure of postnatal day 7 (P7) mice to ethanol activates caspase-3 via cannabinoid receptor type-1 (CB1R) in neonatal mice and causes a reduction in methylated DNA binding protein (MeCP2) levels. The developmental expression of MeCP2 in mice is closely correlated with synaptogenesis and neuronal maturation...
2018: Frontiers in Molecular Neuroscience
Luca Pasquini, Antonio Napolitano, Emiliano Visconti, Daniela Longo, Andrea Romano, Paolo Tomà, Maria Camilla Rossi Espagnet
In recent years, gadolinium-based contrast agents have been associated with different types of toxicity. In particular, nephrogenic systemic fibrosis, a progressive sclerotic-myxedematous systemic disease of unknown etiology, is related to gadolinium-based contrast agent administration in patients with kidney dysfunction. More recently, evidence of magnetic resonance signal intensity changes on pre-contrast T1-weighted images after multiple gadolinium-based contrast agent administrations resulted in the hypothesis of gadolinium brain accumulation in patients with normal renal function, subsequently confirmed in pathological samples...
March 5, 2018: CNS Drugs
Daniel Bamborschke, Matthias Pergande, Kerstin Becker, Friederike Körber, Jörg Dötsch, Anne Vierzig, Lutz T Weber, Sebahattin Cirak
INTRODUCTION: Recently recessive mutations in sphingosine-1-phosphate lyase (SGPL1) have been published as a cause of syndromic congenital nephrotic syndrome with adrenal insufficiency. We have identified a case with fetal hydrops and brain malformations due to a mutation in SGPL1. CASE REPORT: We report a patient presenting with severe fetal hydrops, congenital nephrotic syndrome and adrenal calcifications. MRI imaging showed generalized cortical atrophy with simplified gyral pattern and hypoplastic temporal lobes as well as cerebellar hypoplasia and hyperintensity in the pons...
February 28, 2018: Brain & Development
Ana I L Namburete, Weidi Xie, Mohammad Yaqub, Andrew Zisserman, J Alison Noble
Methods for aligning 3D fetal neurosonography images must be robust to (i) intensity variations, (ii) anatomical and age-specific differences within the fetal population, and (iii) the variations in fetal position. To this end, we propose a multi-task fully convolutional neural network (FCN) architecture to address the problem of 3D fetal brain localization, structural segmentation, and alignment to a referential coordinate system. Instead of treating these tasks as independent problems, we optimize the network by simultaneously learning features shared within the input data pertaining to the correlated tasks, and later branching out into task-specific output streams...
February 21, 2018: Medical Image Analysis
Y Nilipour, S Nafissi, A E Tjust, G Ravenscroft, H Hossein-Nejad, R Taylor, V Varasteh, F Pedrosa Domellöf, M Zangi, S H Tonekaboni, M Olivé, K Kiiski, L Sagath, Davis, N Laing, H Tajsharghi
BACKGROUND: Nemaline myopathy has been associated with mutations in twelve genes to date. However, for some patients diagnosed with nemaline myopathy, definitive mutations are not identified in the known genes, suggesting there are other genes involved. This study describes compound heterozygosity for rare variants in RYR3 in one such patient. RESULTS: Clinical examination of the patient at 22 years of age revealed a long-narrow face, high arched palate and bilateral facial weakness...
March 2, 2018: European Journal of Neurology: the Official Journal of the European Federation of Neurological Societies
Curt A Sandman, Megan M Curran, Elysia Poggi Davis, Laura M Glynn, Kevin Head, Tallie Z Baram
OBJECTIVE: The authors sought to assess associations among early-life exposure to adversity, the development and maturation of neurons and brain circuits, and neurodevelopmental outcomes. Specifically, they examined whether fetal exposure to placental corticotropin-releasing hormone (CRH), a molecule conveying maternal signals to the fetus, predicts brain growth and neuropsychiatric outcomes in school-age children. METHOD: In a large, well-characterized prospective cohort, concentrations of placental CRH (pCRH) in maternal plasma were determined during five intervals during gestation...
March 2, 2018: American Journal of Psychiatry
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