PSYCH 210 Lecture Notes - Lecture 6: Umbilical Cord, Egg Cell, Fetus

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6 Feb 2017

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Module 2.3: Prenatal Growth and Birth
2.12-Fertilization: The Moment of Conception
Fertilization: the process by which a sperm and an ovum- the male and female gametes,
respectively- join to form a single new cell
2.13- The Stages of the Prenatal Period: The Onset of Development
Germinal stage: the firstand shortest- stage of the prenatal period, which takes place
during the first two weeks following conception
o Cells becoming increasingly specialized
o Placenta: a conduit between the mother and fetus, providing nourishment and
oxygen via the umbilical cord
Embryonic stage: the period from 2 to 8 weeks following fertilization during which
significant growth occurs in the major organs and body systems
o Child is called an embryo
o Development of major organs and basic anatomy
o 3 layers
ectoderm: forms skin, hair, teeth, sense organs, and the brain and spinal
mesoderm: muscles, bones, blood, and circulatory system
endoderm: digestive system, liver, pancreas, and respiratory system
Fetal stage: the stage that begins at about 8 weeks after conception and continues until
o Child is now called a fetus
o Becoming more complex and integrated
2.14- Pregnancy Problems
Infertility: the inability to conceive after 12 to 18 months of trying to become pregnant
o Men: most common problem is usually producing too few sperm
o Women: most common problem is releasing an egg
o Can be due to hormone imbalance, a damaged fallopian tube or uterus, stress, or
abuse of alcohol and drugs
Artificial insemination: a process of fertilization i hih a a’s sper is plaed diretly
ito a oa’s agia y a physiia
I itro fertilizatio: a proedure i hih a oa’s oa are reoed fro her oaries,
ad a a’s sper are used to fertilize the oa i a laoratory
2.15- The Prenatal Environment: Threats to Development
Teratogen: an environmental agent, such as a drug, chemical, virus, or other factor that
produces a birth defect
o Some may have minimal impact, while others will have a big impact
o Important factors: mothers age, mothers diet, mothers prenatal support,
other’s health, other’s drug use, other’s use of alohol ad toao
o Fetal alcohol spectrum disorder (FASD): a disorder caused by the pregnant
mother consuming substantial quantities of alcohol during pregnancy,
potentially resulting in mental retardation and delayed growth in the child
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