Jeffrey Weinzweig's Experiments on In Utero Cleft Palate Repair in Goats (1999-2002)
AuthorKersten, Jillian R.
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Jeffrey Weinzweig and his team, in the US at the turn of the twenty-first century, performed a series of experiments on fetal goats to study the feasibility of repairing cleft palates on organisms still in the womb. Weinzweig , a plastic surgeon who specialized in cleft palate repair, and his team developed a method to cause cleft palates in fetal goats that are similar to clefts that occur in human fetuses. Using their goat congenital model, the team developed a method to repair a congenital cleft palate in utero, or in the womb. The resultant goat newborns had fully developed palates without scarring and with minimal functional impairment. The researchers recommended that surgeons use their repair methods in humans to decrease the incidence of speech impairment commonly associated with cleft palate patients.