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Lauredhel is an Australian woman and mother with a disability. She blogs about disability and accessibility, social and reproductive justice, gender, freedom from violence, the uses and misuses of language, medical science, otters, gardening, and cooking.

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11 responses to “Fetuses and roundworms: more alike than you might think”

  1. Ian

    Unfortunately this is typical science reporting, even of the better kind of science reporting — even if they get the observation more or less right there’s no context. The question of the immunology of pregnancy has been studied in enormous depth for decades. There are well over 50,000 papers on the topic. Dozens, if not hundreds, of specific mechanisms have been defined that help prevent immunologic rejection of the fetus. Acting as if this new discovery, one more mechanisms on top of the hundred already known, is the reason why pregnancies aren’t rejected is like saying the commemorative plaque on top of a dike keeps back the North Sea.

  2. Helen

    Now, how many people clicked on Hoyden this morning and went, “Mmmm, that’s a nice bowl of pasta.”

  3. su

    aargh, Helen – I’m having Breakfast!

  4. rpg

    Heh, I wondered if Ian would be along to set the record straight. . .

  5. rpg

    Heh, so when I’ve been downloading the full texts of refs that the Hoydenne have posted, and making them available to you, I needn’t have? Not a proble, it’s just nice to know :)

    Assuming that your W Aus Uni has the same access as my E Aus one, noch.

  6. Ian

    The grad immunology class I teach just spent a couple hours very superficially covering some of the aspects of fetal tolerance and the immunology of pregnancy, so it kind of irked me that all the stuff I was talking about — uterine NK cells, HLA-G, all that cool stuff — was getting ignored.

  7. Liam

    “Mmmm, that’s a nice bowl of pasta.”

    Yairs, Helen, I saw a bucket of alfalfa sprouts, then the haemostats, then I did the double-take and scrolled back up, clicked the link from Google Reader and was very. seriously. disturbed.

  8. Ian

    I would love to not ignore that stuff. Is there a handy post or page on Mystery Rays or elsewhere that I can link to?

    There’s nothing about the immunology of pregnancy on Mystery Rays yet. It’s too complex for me to write a snappy blog post about it, even for my very low standards of snappiness.

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