Pregnancy and Lactation Weekly Digest

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For the Week Ending January 19, 2020. 

The goop Lab

Gwyneth Paltrow’s on Netflix. The products she touts in the name of “wellness” are not only unproven to work, they are unproven to be safe – and can do real harm, besides the obvious harms of tricking people into spending their hard-earned money on nonsense and discouraging them from seeking established therapies that are known to be effective. Read more here.

This is important for you because you should be getting your medical advice from doctors. Not from actors on TV. 

June Eric-Udorie 

June Eric-Udorie was Elle’s Female Activist of the Year in 2017, when she was only 18, for her pioneering work in the UK as a feminist campaigner and her writing on intersectionality and gender rights. Now she is stateside, working as a doula and crisis counselor. She dreams of providing doula services to black women who need them, free of charge; donate to her cause here

This is important for you because her passion is guiding her to do such important work and really impact the world; it’s amazing and inspiring.

The infantome

We now have the capability to sequence all of the DNA in every baby as soon as they are born. But should we? An entire genome is a lot of information, and we don’t yet know what it all means and how it can best be utilized. Screening for conditions that are known, and treatable, may make more sense. Read more here.

This is important for you because while information is power, too much vague information is not going to do anybody any good. 

He Jiankui goes to jail

The Chinese scientist who made gene-edited baby girls–with the edited genes in their egg cells, so they will get propagated in the girls’ offspring–has been sentenced to three years in jail for doing so. He also has to pay a hefty fine, and is no longer eligible to apply for government funding for research. The Chinese government hopes this will deter copycat scientists in China. Read more here.

This is important for you because this punishment makes clear that most of humanity feels that this line should not have been crossed.

The most popular article on The Pulse this week was Caring for Your Baby’s Teeth. Read it here.

Diana Gitig
Dr. Diana Gitig has a Ph.D. in cell biology and genetics from Cornell University, and has been writing about issues in biology – from molecular biology to cancer to immunology to neuroscience to nutrition to agriculture - for the past fifteen years. She has three teenaged children.

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