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Pregnancy: NICHD Research Goals

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Improving the health of mothers and children during pregnancy has been a primary goal of the NICHD since its founding in 1962. The various branches within the NICHD lead and support research aimed at promoting scientific advances and developing new information to ensure healthy pregnancies and healthy infants.

Some of the goals for the NICHD related to pregnancy include studies to:

  • Understand the biology of pregnancy at a molecular level
  • Help define an optimal pregnancy in terms of fetal, maternal, and paternal biology
  • Advance knowledge and treatment of premature labor and preterm birth
  • Evaluate environmental effects on the developing fetus
  • Advance training for scientists
  • Advance the development of technology, including the application of genomics, proteomics, and bioinformatics for pregnancy research
  • Further research on the appropriate use of medication in pregnancy
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