文章来源:未知 文章作者:enread 发布时间:2016-12-20 08:53 字体: [ ]  进入论坛
Growing a human being is no small feat1 -- just ask any newly pregnant woman. Her hormones2 surge as her body undergoes a massive physical transformation3, and the changes don't end there. A study published Monday in Nature Neuroscience reveals that during pregnancy4 women undergo significant brain remodeling that persists for at least two years after birth. The study also offers preliminary evidence that this remodeling may play a role in helping5 women transition into motherhood.
A research team at Autonomous6 University of Barcelona, led by neuroscientist Elseline Hoekzema of Leiden University, performed brain scans on first-time mothers before and after pregnancy and found significant gray matter changes in brain regions associated with social cognition and theory of mind -- the same regions that were activated7 when women looked at photos of their infants. These changes, which were still present two years after birth, predicted women's scores on a test of maternal8 attachment9, and were so clear that a computer algorithm could use them to identify which women had been pregnant.
One of the hallmarks of pregnancy is an enormous increase in sex steroid hormones such as progesterone and estrogen, which help a woman's body prepare for carrying a child. There is only one other time when our bodies produce similarly large quantities of these hormones: puberty. Previous research has shown that during puberty these hormones cause dramatic structural10 and organizational changes in the brain. Throughout adolescence11 both boys and girls lose gray matter as the brain connections they don't need are pruned12, and their brains are sculpted13 into their adult form. Very little research has focused on anatomical brain changes during pregnancy, however. "Most women undergo pregnancy at some point in their lives," Hoekzema says, "But we have no idea what happens in the brain."


1 feat 5kzxp     
  • Man's first landing on the moon was a feat of great daring.人类首次登月是一个勇敢的壮举。
  • He received a medal for his heroic feat.他因其英雄业绩而获得一枚勋章。
2 hormones hormones     
n. 荷尔蒙,激素 名词hormone的复数形式
  • This hormone interacts closely with other hormones in the body. 这种荷尔蒙与体內其他荷尔蒙紧密地相互作用。
  • The adrenals produce a large per cent of a man's sex hormones. 肾上腺分泌人体的大部分性激素。
3 transformation SnFwO     
  • Going to college brought about a dramatic transformation in her outlook.上大学使她的观念发生了巨大的变化。
  • He was struggling to make the transformation from single man to responsible husband.他正在努力使自己由单身汉变为可靠的丈夫。
4 pregnancy lPwxP     
  • Early pregnancy is often accompanied by nausea.怀孕早期常有恶心的现象。
  • Smoking during pregnancy increases the risk of miscarriage.怀孕期吸烟会增加流产的危险。
5 helping 2rGzDc     
  • The poor children regularly pony up for a second helping of my hamburger. 那些可怜的孩子们总是要求我把我的汉堡包再给他们一份。
  • By doing this, they may at times be helping to restore competition. 这样一来, 他在某些时候,有助于竞争的加强。
6 autonomous DPyyv     
  • They proudly declared themselves part of a new autonomous province.他们自豪地宣布成为新自治省的一部分。
  • This is a matter that comes within the jurisdiction of the autonomous region.这件事是属于自治区权限以内的事务。
7 activated c3905c37f4127686d512a7665206852e     
adj. 激活的 动词activate的过去式和过去分词
  • The canister is filled with activated charcoal.蒸气回收罐中充满了活性炭。
8 maternal 57Azi     
  • He is my maternal uncle.他是我舅舅。
  • The sight of the hopeless little boy aroused her maternal instincts.那个绝望的小男孩的模样唤起了她的母性。
9 attachment POpy1     
  • She has a great attachment to her sister.她十分依恋她的姐姐。
  • She's on attachment to the Ministry of Defense.她现在隶属于国防部。
10 structural itXw5     
  • The storm caused no structural damage.风暴没有造成建筑结构方面的破坏。
  • The North American continent is made up of three great structural entities.北美大陆是由三个构造单元组成的。
11 adolescence CyXzY     
  • Adolescence is the process of going from childhood to maturity.青春期是从少年到成年的过渡期。
  • The film is about the trials and tribulations of adolescence.这部电影讲述了青春期的麻烦和苦恼。
12 pruned f85c1df15d6cc4e51e146e7321c6b2a5     
v.修剪(树木等)( prune的过去式和过去分词 );精简某事物,除去某事物多余的部分
  • Next year's budget will have to be drastically pruned. 下一年度的预算将大幅度削减。 来自《简明英汉词典》
  • The roses had been pruned back savagely. 玫瑰被狠狠地修剪了一番。 来自《简明英汉词典》
13 sculpted da5be298460bb9f4b0690c2dc86da0af     
  • a display of animals sculpted in ice 冰雕动物展
  • The ladies had their hair sculpted by the leading coiffeur of the day. 女士们的发型都是当代有名的理发师做的。
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