All news from Maternity & Child Health

Zika Infection in Pregnancy and Its Consequences

Zika virus is an arbovirus transmitted by the Aedes aegypti mosquito, but it can also be transmitted by sexual contact and blood transfusion. Adult patients infected with Zika usually present only mild symptoms over a few days, such as rashes, conjunctivitis, arthralgia and mild fever.

The new study, titled "Acute and chronic neurological consequences of early-life Zika virus infection in mice," is published in the renowned journal Science Translational Medicine, and offers new hope for the public health crisis that has arisen in countries affected by Zika virus.

Rhesus Factor and Its Role in Blood Transfusion and Pregnancy

If the blood of a pregnant woman is rhesus-negative (Rh-negative) and the blood of the fetus is rhesus-positive (Rh-positive), the woman may develop antibodies, which can cause severe harm to subsequent children in particular. In order to prevent this effect called sensitization, all Rh-negative pregnant women in Germany currently receive a prophylaxis.

A new type of test using a blood sample of the pregnant woman can determine the child's rhesus factor already before birth, however. Provided the test is sufficiently reliable, many women might not need the prophylaxis. Currently, the blood of the newborn baby is tested directly after birth.

Role of Combined Maternal STIs in HIV Mother-to-child Transmission

The present analysis provides a more comprehensive evaluation of the risk factors associated with these STIs (CT, NG, TP, and CMV) and the impact of these combined untreated infections on HIV mother to child transmission in a high-risk cohort of late-presenting HIV-infected pregnant women who did not receive antiretroviral drugs (ARV) during pregnancy.

Asthma in Infant Boys could Soon be Preventable

The family risk for asthma — typically passed from moms to babies — may not be a result of genetics alone: it may also involve the microbes found in a baby's digestive tract, according to the study published in European Respiratory Journal. The researchers from the University of Alberta showed there is an additional — and potentially treatable — reason why babies born to moms with asthma often develop the condition themselves.