Women’s exposure to environmental contaminants that mimic the activity of human sex hormones during prenatal development can affect the masculinity and femininity of their offspring, UB researchers have found. However, the results seem to point to a shared influence of the parents’ own gender-related behavior and exposure to the contaminants, which can act as “endocrine disrupters,” according to David E. Sandberg, Ph.D., UB associate professor of psychiatry and pediatrics and lead author on the research.
Women who engage in vigorous leisure activity during their first and second trimesters of pregnancy may experience a decreased risk of preterm birth, a new study suggests. Vigorous leisure activity includes exercise programs such as swimming laps, jogging at a moderate to fast pace, aerobics or aerobic dance, other fast dancing and moderate to fast bicycling. Preterm birth is defined as delivery before completion of 37 weeks gestation.