HIV-free children whose mothers started taking anti-HIV medications while they were in the womb may be at higher risk for lower-than-average scores in one or more areas of development at age 5, according to a study supported by the National Institutes of Health.
NICHD issues News Releases and Media Advisories to the news media. Spotlight and Research Feature articles explain NICHD research findings and public health issues to the general public. An Item of Interest is a short announcement of relevant information, such as a notable staff change.
Science Update: Risk of developmental delays may be higher for HIV-free children whose mothers began antiretroviral treatment during pregnancy, NIH-funded study suggests
Science Update: High-intensity walking intervals better than moderate walking for stroke rehabilitation, NIH-funded study suggests
A program with intervals of high-intensity walking promotes greater gains in fitness for stroke patients than the currently recommended program of moderate-intensity walking, suggests a study funded by the National Institutes of Health. The study enrolled chronic stroke patients—those at least six months past their stroke—often considered more difficult to rehabilitate than recent stroke patients.
Spotlight: Scientific Advances from the Division of Intramural Research
The Division of Intramural Research provides fundamental knowledge about the nature and behavior of living systems through basic, clinical, and population-based research.
Science Update: Uterine fibroids may slightly increase fetal size but not enough to interfere with birth process, NIH study suggests
Uterine fibroids during pregnancy do not appear to result in undersized newborns, suggests a study by researchers at the National Institutes of Health. The finding allays concerns from previous studies that fibroids might result in smaller-than-normal infants. In fact, the study found that infants born to mothers with fibroids had slightly larger head, arm and thigh circumferences, though not to the extent that they would interfere with birth. The researchers also confirmed prior results suggesting a link between fibroids and increased risk for preterm birth.
Release: Single-dose antibiotic prevents maternal sepsis and death
A single oral dose of the antibiotic azithromycin can reduce the risk of postpartum sepsis and death among women who deliver vaginally by one-third, according to a large multi-country clinical trial funded by NICHD.
Science Update: Postpartum depression, reduced breastfeeding may help account for developmental delays seen in children born to women with depression during pregnancy
Researchers know that children born to mothers who have depression in pregnancy are at risk for developmental delays but haven’t known why. Now, a National Institutes of Health study suggests that depression persisting after pregnancy and reduced breastfeeding may account for at least part of the increased risk. Based on their results, researchers conclude that physicians may be able to reduce this risk by offering treatment for depression both during and after pregnancy and by counseling new mothers on how to breastfeed successfully.
Science Update: Compound in olive leaves may provide endometriosis treatment, NIH-funded mouse study suggests
Oleuropein, a compound found in olive oil and olive leaves, may have the potential to treat endometriosis with fewer side effects than current treatments, suggests a study of mice and human tissue cultures funded by the National Institutes of Health.
Director's Corner: Reflecting on NICHD’s 60th Anniversary Year
Research conducted at NICHD and at NICHD-funded institutions continues to bring us closer to fulfilling our vision of ensuring healthy pregnancies, healthy children, and healthy and optimal lives.
Selected NICHD Research Advances of 2022
Read about NICHD’s research findings and activities from 2022.
Science Update: NIH-funded researchers examine uterine prolapse surgical trial outcomes
Study finds that a second operation benefits the small subset of women who choose reoperation for recurring symptoms.
Science Update: Common chemical may promote fibroid growth, small NIH-funded study suggests
Exposure to a chemical found in a wide variety of consumer products may trigger the growth of uterine fibroid cells and delay the rate at which they die, suggests a study funded by the National Institutes of Health. The study provides a potential explanation for why women exposed to industrial chemicals known as phthalates—found in personal care products, food packaging, and medical products—have higher rates of fibroid tumors than other women. The findings may also inform future strategies to prevent or treat fibroids.
Media Advisory: NIH-funded researchers to begin study of intravenous iron treatment for post-pregnancy anemia
Researchers supported by the National Institutes of Health are launching a large study to evaluate a single dose of intravenous iron to treat women experiencing anemia after giving birth. The study will enroll nearly 5,000 women in Bangladesh, India, Pakistan, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Kenya, Zambia and Guatemala.
Media Advisory: No increase in risk of serious pregnancy complications during early pandemic, NIH-funded study suggests
Compared to giving birth in 2019, giving birth in 2020 during the early stages of the pandemic was not associated with a higher risk of maternal death or a serious complication of pregnancy, suggests a study funded by the National Institutes of Health.
Science Update: Placental malaria may slow glucose flow to the fetus, NIH-funded study suggests
Malaria infection of the placenta may reduce the amount of glucose that passes to the fetus, according to an NIH-funded study. The research involves a placenta on a chip model—a laboratory device incorporating placental tissue to simulate the interface between maternal blood and the outermost part of the placenta. The findings offer insight into how placental malaria may deprive the fetus of an essential nutrient and may inform the development of strategies to prevent or treat the condition.
Science Update: NIH-led working group proposes new paradigm of ovarian anatomy
A group of experts led by NICHD has proposed a new anatomic model of the ovary and recommended standardized nomenclature to describe its major features.
Release: Study confirms link between COVID-19 vaccination and temporary increase in menstrual cycle length
A large international study has confirmed the findings of a previous U.S. study that linked COVID-19 vaccination with an average increase in menstrual cycle length of less than one day. The increase was not associated with any change in the number of days of menses (days of bleeding). Funded by the National Institutes of Health, the new study included data from nearly 20,000 people from Canada, the United Kingdom, the United States, Europe and other parts of the world who received any of nine different vaccines. For most study participants, the increase resolved in the cycle following vaccination.
Science Update: Pregnancy-associated homicides on the rise in the United States, suggests NICHD-funded study
U.S. rates of pregnancy-associated homicide—deaths that occur among women who are pregnant or had been pregnant within one year—rose in 2020 during the COVID-19 pandemic, according to a recent NICHD-funded study.
Director's Corner: Crowdsourcing to Advance Maternal Health Research
Challenge competitions offer a mechanism to quickly bring in diverse voices and expertise to innovate and problem-solve. This month, NICHD and partners launched two challenges focused on improving our nation’s maternal health: the RADx® Tech for Maternal Health Challenge and the Connecting the Community for Maternal Health Challenge.
Release: NIH launches $8 million prize competition to reduce maternal deaths in regions that lack maternity care
The National Institutes of Health is offering up to $8 million in cash prizes to accelerate development of technologies to improve maternal health outcomes for those who live in areas lacking access to maternity care.
Release: NIH launches challenge to advance community-based maternal health research
The National Institutes of Health has launched a $3 million challenge competition to encourage community-based and advocacy organizations in the United States to develop the infrastructure and capabilities necessary to conduct maternal health research.