About This Project
The human placenta contains a mixture of substances which may be useful for individual postpartum treatment. Until now, scientific research on the use of placenta remedies as a unique and cheap therapeutic treatment for women suffering from pathologies like anemia, depression or lactation difficulties, does not exist. To be able to discuss possible effects of placentophagy, the content of placental tissue has to be tested. The goal of this project is to analyze the hormones and elements from a sample size of 6 placentas to identify the bioactive molecules present.
Ask the ScientistsJoin The Discussion
What is the context of this research?
Recently, a trend of mothers having capsules made from their own placenta for postpartal use can be observed in the US and in Europe. However, scientific evidence on the impact of placentophagy is rare.
On the subject of placentophagy, researchers often have contrary opinions; proponents claim various benefits whereas detractors state that intake is useless for humans.
Precise knowledge of the substances contained in placental tissue will allow a discussion on limitations and possible applications of placenta remedies.
What is the significance of this project?
Placentophagy could either cause a placebo effect or turn out be a cheap and effective medication for women suffering from postpartal diseases. Furthermore it could support an effective recovery from an exhausting childbirth.
Many women use placenta remedies without existing scientific research on the effects.
I want to introduce human placentophagy into the field of academic discussion. In order to be able to discuss possible effects of placentophagy, basic research is needed to determine which components and hormones can be found in placental tissue.
What are the goals of the project?
Placentas from spontaneous, unmedicated birth will immediately be prepared at the placenta lab for further analysis. Each placenta will be divided in half, of which one part will be dehydrated, the other part frozen. After a sample size of six placentas is collected, the material will be transferred to the food analytic laboratory where approximately 11-12 substances will be tested for.
I want to compare the contained amount of elements such as lead, iron and mercury. Furthermore, the amount of hormones such as CRH, oxytocin, human placental lactogen, estrogens and gestagens will be analyzed before and after the dehydration of placental tissue.
Laboratory Analysis: Usually bio fluids such as human blood serum are used for the analysis of hormones and other substances. In this special case, analysis from placental tissue is needed to determine the existence of substance before and after dehydration. This can only be done at a laboratory specialized in food analytics. I am delighted to have secured the cooperation of "Food GmbH Jena Analytik - Consulting" for this exciting project.
Dehydrator: A dehydrator is required for preparing the material for comparison of contained substances in raw and dehydrated placental tissue.
Meet the Team
During my two pregnancies I experienced the wonderful work and care of many midwives. I always enjoyed discussing pre- and postnatal care and liked the exchange of my ideas as a physician with midwives. When I first heard about women using their placenta as a remedy, I was appalled. Then I started reading about this topic, and came to find that very little research had been done. As a physician, I rely on evidence- based medicine but qualified papers or studies on this specific topic were hard to find. Consequently, I contacted the placenta laboratory in Jena to find out, if there was any research conducted on placenta remedies. There was none - so I started my own project to find out more about the possibilities of therapeutic use of the placenta.
Besides my passion of working scientifically, I love spending time with my family, enjoying nature and being active outdoors. I am interested in all topics related to "living healthy" - cooking clean, growing own vegetables and doing sports and yoga to stay strong and happy.
I have been playing the violin for many years with the STÜBAphilharmonie orchestra. Through these years, many musicians have become good friends of mine. Together we organize many musical and social projects such as symphonic concerts and puppet shows. Currently we are organizing an Arabic music workshop to support Syrian refugees and bring together musicians from different cultures and backgrounds.
In 2012 I graduated at the private University of Witten/Herdecke. In addition to my general medical studies, I attended courses in Anthroposophical Medicine, Phytotherapy and Traditional Chinese Medicine. As my interest in alternative medicine is broad, I am eager to include it into my scientific studies.
As a mother of two children I have experienced pregnancy, birth and childbed and am fascinated by this very special and natural transformation of the female body.
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