Fetal lungs provide a signal initiating labor, UT Southwestern researchers find

DALLAS March 22, 2004 A protein released from the lungs of a developing mouse fetus initiates a cascade of chemical events leading to the mother's initiation of labor, researchers at UT Southwestern Medical Center at Dallas have found.

The research, which has implications for humans, marks the first time a link between a specific fetal lung protein and labor has been identified, said Dr. Carole Mendelson, professor of biochemistry and obstetrics and gynecology and senior author of the study. The paper appears in an upcoming issue of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences and is currently available online.

The initiation of term labor is carefully timed to begin only after the embryo is sufficiently mature to survive outside the womb. Previous studies suggested that the signal for labor in humans may arise from the fetus, but the nature of the signal and actual mechanism was unclear, Dr. Mendelson said.

In their study, UT Southwestern researchers found evidence that a substance secreted by the lungs of a developing fetus contains the key signal that initiates labor. The substance, called surfactant, is essential for normal breathing outside the womb.

"We found that a protein within lung surfactant serves as a hormone of labor that signals to the mother's uterus when the fetal lungs are sufficiently mature to withstand the critical transition to air breathing," Dr. Mendelson said.

"No one really understands what causes normal or preterm labor. There may be several chemical pathways that lead to labor, but we think that this surfactant protein, which is also produced by the fetal lung in humans, may be the first hormonal signal for labor," said Dr. Mendelson, who is co-director of the North Texas March of Dimes Birth Defects Center at UT Southwestern.

In humans the signaling protein, called surfactant protein A, or SP-A, also helps immune cells, called macrophages, fight off infections in the lungs of chil

Contact: Amanda Siegfried
UT Southwestern Medical Center

Page: 1 2 3

Related biology news :

1. Fetal death, miscarriage linked to genetic mutation
2. CDC MMWR: Fetal Alcohol Syndrome and Cutaneous Anthrax in a Lab Worker
3. Fetal research first in USA
4. Fetal and prepubertal growth both programme cholesterol metabolism in adulthood
5. Fetal and birth complications increase mental illness risks
6. Functional Arteries Grown From Cells Using Novel System That Simulates Fetal Environment
7. Study Suggests Maternal Stress And Stress Hormones May Influence Fetal Brain Development In Utero
8. Maternal Anxiety May Affect Fetal Development
9. Fetal Surgery For Spina Bifida Still Under Investigation At VUMC
10. Fetal Growth Rate Affects Risk Of Heart Disease
11. Fetal Lead Exposure May Reduce Immunity

Post Your Comments:

(Date:4/24/2017)... 24, 2017 Janice Kephart , ... Identity Strategy Partners, LLP (IdSP) , today issues ... President Trump,s March 6, 2017 Executive Order: ... vetting can be instilled with greater confidence, enabling ... all refugee applications are suspended by until at ...
(Date:4/18/2017)... Inc., a global expert in SoC-based imaging and computing solutions, has ... features the company,s hybrid codec technology. A demonstration utilizing TeraFaces ® ... be showcased during the upcoming Medtec Japan at Tokyo Big Sight ... Las Vegas Convention Center April 24-27. ... Click here for an image of the ...
(Date:4/13/2017)... Calif. , April 13, 2017 UBM,s ... York will feature emerging and evolving technology ... Both Innovation Summits will run alongside the expo portion ... speaker sessions, panels and demonstrations focused on trending topics ... largest advanced design and manufacturing event will take place ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:10/10/2017)... ... October 10, 2017 , ... ... advancing targeted antibody-drug conjugate (ADC) therapeutics, today confirmed licensing rights that give ... Liposomal Nanoparticle), a technology developed in collaboration with Children’s Hospital Los Angeles ...
(Date:10/10/2017)... Oct. 10, 2017 SomaGenics announced the receipt ... to develop RealSeq®-SC (Single Cell), expected to be the ... RNAs (including microRNAs) from single cells using NGS methods. ... need to accelerate development of approaches to analyze the ... "New techniques for measuring levels of mRNAs in ...
(Date:10/9/2017)... ... October 09, 2017 , ... The award-winning American Farmer television series ... 2018. American Farmer airs Tuesdays at 8:30aET on RFD-TV. , With global population ... challenge of how to continue to feed a growing nation. At the same time, ...
(Date:10/7/2017)... ... October 06, 2017 , ... ... for microscopy and surface analysis, Nanoscience Instruments is now expanding into Analytical ... broad range of contract analysis services for advanced applications. Services will leverage ...
Breaking Biology Technology:
Cached News: