Fetal lungs regulate molecular signals that initiate parturition
The intiation of birth (parturition)
Contrary to the popular themes that we cannot control where we are born at, or to whom we are born to, new scientific data shows that there is constant molecular talk between the mother and the near-term fetus and infact the fetus sends in crucial signals to initiate the process of labor.
Both at term and preterm, the initiation of labor is associated with an up regulated inflammatory response, a spike in the pro-inflammatory cytokines in amniotic fluid; infiltration of myometrium, cervix, and fetal membranes by neutrophils and macrophages and a decline in progesterone receptor function. But there is still no clear evidence of the actual molecular signals that cause the inflammatory response leading to labor at term.
Surfactant is a lipoprotein that reduces surface tension within the lung alveoli after birth and is essential for…
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