The Effects of Thalidomide on Embryonic Development
MetadataShow full item record
Embryogenesis is an intricate process that can easily be disrupted by means of teratogenic agents. Some of these agents target the embryonic period's "window of susceptibility," three to eight weeks after a pregnant woman's last menstruation, when the highest degree of sensitivity to embryonic cell differentiation and organ formation occurs. The embryonic period or critical period is when most organ systems form, whereas the fetal period, week eight to birth, involves the growth and modeling of the organ systems. During the window of susceptibility, teratogens such as thalidomide can severely damage critical milestones of embryonic development.