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Male-female communication at conception shapes the health of offspring, study says

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Posted January 28, 2014
Male-female communication at conception shapes the health of offspring
Seminal fluid and offspring metabolic health. Left panel shows normal placental development and progeny weight in the presence of seminal fluid during conception. Right panel shows placental hypertrophy and obese offspring in the absence of seminal fluid.
A father’s input is important for his child’s future health right from the moment of conception, with the quality of his seminal fluid playing a major and unique role in that process, according to new research from the University of Adelaide’s Robinson Institute.

Scientists have known for some years that seminal fluid is critical in determining whether or not a couple is able to conceive a child. But University of Adelaide researchers have now discovered that the fluid itself – not just the sperm – influences a range of developmental stages of the offspring, particularly in sons. This in turn affects the chances of developing obesity, diabetes, and other metabolic health conditions.

In laboratory studies, researchers at the University’s Robinson Institute have been studying the complex interactions between male seminal fluid and female reproductive tissues. The latest results are published today in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS).

Read more at: Phys.org

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