It will for the first time allow researchers to see how important the hormone –relaxin- is for human pregnancy
As part of her doctoral studies, Abigail Thompson is exploring the role that the relaxin hormone has in achieving a successful pregnancy. If the study is successful it is hoped that use of this hormone may improve fertility rates and help infertile couples to conceive.
Details of the study were made public today (Friday June 29) at a Festival of Postgraduate Research at the University of Leicester.
Abigail, a Human Reproductive Biologist in the Department of Infection, Immunity and Inflammation, said: “Achieving a successful pregnancy is becoming ever more difficult for an increasing number of couples, young and old, with one in six couples experiencing difficulties conceiving.
“Implantation of the embryo into the uterus 6 or 7 days after fertilisation is essential to achieve pregnancy and its failure is a major cause of sterility, presenting a social and economic burden worldwide. Assisted reproductive technologies which can help to reduce levels of infertility are used by 27,000 couples a year in Britain alone. Despite this, the success rates remain low and the costs of fertility treatments stay high.”
Funded by EMBIC, the European Network of Excellence on Embryo Implantation Control, the research project aims to improve these success rates by determining factors which affect the implantation process.
The Leicester study is exploring the role of the hormone relaxin which is expressed during the first trimester of pregnancy in women.
Abigail said: “The role of this hormone in human pregnancy is poorly understood, however, it is known that in pig and rat pregnancy it plays an important role in widening of the birth canal and softening of the cervix during the third trimester, preparing these animals for labour.
“It is hypothesised that this hormone in humans may be involved in the implantation process of pregnancy, through softening of the uterine tissue at the site of implantation, allowing the embryo to obtain nutrients from the mother and for the placenta to eventually form.
“My research will involve using a model system to localise the relaxin hormone at the point of attachment and implantation of the embryo into the uterus, and to study its affects at this point.
“This work will for the first time allow us to see how important this hormone is for human pregnancy and could be a step towards improving fertility rates and infertility treatments worldwide, helping infertile couples to conceive.”
EMBIC is a European Union network of excellence on embryo implantation control, concentrating the research potential of 19 leading European institutions and 2 private companies in 11 countries for an improved understanding of infertility and its causes.
The research is being presented to the public at the University of Leicester on June 29. The Festival of Postgraduate Research introduces employers and the public to the next generation of innovators and cutting-edge researchers, and gives postgraduate researchers the opportunity to explain the real world implications of their research to a wide ranging audience.
More information on the Festival of Postgraduate Research at: http://www.le.ac.uk/gradschool/festival/
Ather Mirza | alfa
Reusable carbon nanotubes could be the water filter of the future, says RIT study
30.03.2017 | Rochester Institute of Technology
Pan-European study on “Smart Engineering”
30.03.2017 | IPH - Institut für Integrierte Produktion Hannover gGmbH
The Institute of Semiconductor Technology and the Institute of Physical and Theoretical Chemistry, both members of the Laboratory for Emerging Nanometrology (LENA), at Technische Universität Braunschweig are partners in a new European research project entitled ChipScope, which aims to develop a completely new and extremely small optical microscope capable of observing the interior of living cells in real time. A consortium of 7 partners from 5 countries will tackle this issue with very ambitious objectives during a four-year research program.
To demonstrate the usefulness of this new scientific tool, at the end of the project the developed chip-sized microscope will be used to observe in real-time...
Astronomers from Bonn and Tautenburg in Thuringia (Germany) used the 100-m radio telescope at Effelsberg to observe several galaxy clusters. At the edges of these large accumulations of dark matter, stellar systems (galaxies), hot gas, and charged particles, they found magnetic fields that are exceptionally ordered over distances of many million light years. This makes them the most extended magnetic fields in the universe known so far.
The results will be published on March 22 in the journal „Astronomy & Astrophysics“.
Galaxy clusters are the largest gravitationally bound structures in the universe. With a typical extent of about 10 million light years, i.e. 100 times the...
Researchers at the Goethe University Frankfurt, together with partners from the University of Tübingen in Germany and Queen Mary University as well as Francis Crick Institute from London (UK) have developed a novel technology to decipher the secret ubiquitin code.
Ubiquitin is a small protein that can be linked to other cellular proteins, thereby controlling and modulating their functions. The attachment occurs in many...
In the eternal search for next generation high-efficiency solar cells and LEDs, scientists at Los Alamos National Laboratory and their partners are creating...
Silicon nanosheets are thin, two-dimensional layers with exceptional optoelectronic properties very similar to those of graphene. Albeit, the nanosheets are less stable. Now researchers at the Technical University of Munich (TUM) have, for the first time ever, produced a composite material combining silicon nanosheets and a polymer that is both UV-resistant and easy to process. This brings the scientists a significant step closer to industrial applications like flexible displays and photosensors.
Silicon nanosheets are thin, two-dimensional layers with exceptional optoelectronic properties very similar to those of graphene. Albeit, the nanosheets are...
20.03.2017 | Event News
14.03.2017 | Event News
07.03.2017 | Event News
30.03.2017 | Health and Medicine
30.03.2017 | Health and Medicine
30.03.2017 | Medical Engineering