The mammalian placenta is a sort of armored car protecting a developing fetus. All manner of infectious agents attempt to break in, but few of them can. Scientists are working to understand why some infections do break through and how to stop them.
Mitochondrial replacement therapy now has been used in humans to conceive a “three-parent baby” to prevent inherited mitochondrial disorders, but there remain questions about the effectiveness of the process.
A newly identified bacterial protein that is shown to jump-start infection may be the culprit in a foodborne disease that strikes pregnant women in disproportionately high numbers, leading to miscarriage and pre-term birth.
UCSF researchers found a way to pause the development of early mouse embryos for up to a month in the lab, a finding with implications for assisted reproduction, regenerative medicine, aging and cancer.