pregnancy

IL-35 Contributing to Immune Tolerance in Normal Pregnancy

IL-35 Contributing to Immune Tolerance in Normal Pregnancy

A study published in PLoS One indicates that normal pregnancy is associated with increased levels of interleukin (IL)-35, whereas recurrent spontaneous abortions are linked to low levels of this cytokine, suggesting the involvement of IL-35 in the maintenance of immune tolerance during pregnancy. IL-35, identified in 2007 is a major immunosuppressive and anti-inflammatory cytokine along […]

The Link between a Curvy Body, Newborns’ Brains and Breastfeeding: or Why Do Women Need Fat?

The Link between a Curvy Body, Newborns’ Brains and Breastfeeding: or Why Do Women Need Fat?

According to two recent reports in The Sunday Times and Daily Mail there is a good reason, from a human evolutionary perspective, why women may need fat and their curvy bodies. In line with the work of Will Lassek, and his research team from the University of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, discussed in these reports, the ‘fat […]

Women with Low Postpartum Oxytocin Levels Had Poor Bonding with Their Mothers and May Struggle to Bond with Their Babies

Women with Low Postpartum Oxytocin Levels Had Poor Bonding with Their Mothers and May Struggle to Bond with Their Babies

A new study by Valsamma Eapen and colleagues from University of New South Wales, Sydney, Australia found that women with low oxytocin levels in the postpartum have a history of bad mother-to-daughter bonding. The study is perhaps the first to show that women with reduced levels of oxytocin in the postpartum have higher subjective ratings […]

Children Delivered By Cesarean Section May Have an Increased Risk for Immune-Related Diseases

Children Delivered By Cesarean Section May Have an Increased Risk for Immune-Related Diseases

According to a study published in the journal Pediatrics, a research team from Denmark provides new evidence that the offspring of women who deliver by cesarean section may have an increased risk for certain immune-related diseases. In the US, the cesarean section rate has increased from 4.5%, in 1965, to 32.8% in 2010 and 2011, […]

New Evidence That Stress In Pregnancy Increases Susceptibility to Asthma In Offspring

New Evidence That Stress In Pregnancy Increases Susceptibility to Asthma In Offspring

A recent study published in the American Journal of Physiology – Lung Cellular and Molecular Physiology indicates that release of glucocorticoids (GCs) as the result of stress during pregnancy can induce asthma susceptibility in offspring. It is known that psychological stress contributes to the pathogenesis and exacerbations of asthma. One mechanism may be the capacity […]

Risk of Postpartum Depression in Mothers Who Planned But Had Not Initiated Breastfeeding

Risk of Postpartum Depression in Mothers Who Planned But Had Not Initiated Breastfeeding

A new study published in the Maternal and Child Health Journal suggests a link between not breastfeeding and postpartum depression (PPD) that seems to depend on whether or not a woman planned to breastfeed in the first place, and as well as her mental health during pregnancy. The research is based on data from a […]

Sperm-Induced Th17 Immune Responses and Their Control by Sex Hormones: Implications for Fertility

Sperm-Induced Th17 Immune Responses and Their Control by Sex Hormones: Implications for Fertility

A new study by Miguel Relloso and colleagues from the Hospital General Universitario Gregorio Marañón in Madrid, Spain, identifies the female sex hormones as important regulators of the T helper (Th)17 response induced by sperm, and related to dendritic cells (DCs), the key professional antigen-presenting cells. Sperm is a foreign antigen (material) and its contact […]

Ucp2 Induction by Natural Birth and Hippocampus Development

Ucp2 Induction by Natural Birth and Hippocampus Development

A recent report published in the August issue of PLoS One indicates that natural (vaginal) birth but not Caesarian section birth in mice triggers uncoupling protein 2 (Ucp2) expression in hippocampal neurons. Mitochondrial Ucp2 is a critical determinant of fatty acid utilization by adult neurons and is involved in cell proliferation, neuroprotection and synaptogenesis in […]

Immune & Cytokine Dysregulation Associated With Behavioral Deficits In A Mouse Model Of Autism

Immune & Cytokine Dysregulation Associated With Behavioral Deficits In A Mouse Model Of Autism

A new report in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the USA (PNAS) indicates that cellular and cytokine immune dysregulation may contribute to the autism spectrum disorder (ASD)-related behavioral deficits in a mouse model of an autism. Recent evidence indicates the involvement of an abnormal immune system activity in the pathogenesis of […]

Oxytocin Increases Generosity and Charitable Donations

Oxytocin Increases Generosity and Charitable Donations

Some of the prosocial effects of oxytocin (OT) such as trust, emotional empathy and socially reinforced learning are well-known, but a recent study published in the Hormones and Behavior journal is perhaps the first one to show that OT also increases generosity. Oxytocin (OT) is a nine amino acid neuropeptide, discovered by Sir Henry Dale […]

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