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New York Times: Study Ties Autism Risk to Creases in Placenta

After most pregnancies, the placenta is thrown out, having done its job of nourishing and supporting the developing baby. But a new study raises the possibility that analyzing the placenta after birth may provide clues to a child’s risk for developing autism.

Source: The New York Times
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  • Losing a pregnancy could land you in jail in post-Roe America

    Chelsea Becker spent 16 months in a California jail awaiting a murder trial after her pregnancy ended in a stillbirth. "I was prepared to just stay at least for the next 15 years in prison," she told NPR. Becker's 2019 arrest drew national attention. With the backdrop of the Supreme Court blocking a Louisiana law that would shutter nearly all abortion clinics in that state, advocates warned that Becker's arrest would empower more prosecutions for pregnancy outcomes.

    Source: NPR All Things Considered
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  • We know the pain of stillbirth, and we're working to lower the numbers in the US

    In October, the Stillbirth Health Improvement and Education (SHINE) for Autumn Act was introduced by Reps. Jaime Herrera Beutler, R-Wash., Lucille Roybal-Allard, D-Calif., Kathy Castor, D-Fla., and Markwayne Mullin, R-Okla. Passed in the House on Dec. 8, this bill has been introduced in the Senate by Cory Booker, D-N.J., and Marco Rubio, R-Fla. We commend the bipartisan advancement of this legislation to finally address the stillbirth crisis in our country.

    Source: USA Today
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  • Dr. Harvey Kliman on the placenta

    Dr. Harvey Kliman never thought he’d spend his life studying the hidden secrets of the placenta, but here he is, doing just that, and loving every moment. This Yale University physician scientist is my guest this week on Oh Baby!, and brings to our conversation the many wonders of the placenta, revealing that it is derived from the father (), that a small placenta is the leading cause of stillbirth, and that the number of folds in a placenta can determine whether a baby has a high chance of autism. Plus, whether eating your placenta is actually beneficial (or whether you should carry it around on a staff!) This episode deals with heavy matters, but is lighthearted too.

    Source: Oh Baby! with Olesia Plokhii
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  • Everybody’s Got One

    We all think we know the story of pregnancy. Sperm meets egg, followed by nine months of nurturing, nesting, and quiet incubation. But this story isn’t the nursery rhyme we think it is. In a way, it’s a struggle, almost like a tiny war. And right on the front lines of that battle is another major player on the stage of pregnancy that not a single person on the planet would be here without. An entirely new organ: the placenta.

    Source: Radiolab WNYC Studios
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