What a humbling thought…the brain that isn’t there…This is a heartbreaking article but really important for us to understand the devastating effects of the Zika virus on the developing fetus.  One of the researchers in this article summed it up…“The brain that should be there is not there,” said Dr. Deborah Levine, an author of the study and a professor of radiology at Harvard Medical School.

Most of the babies in the study were born with microcephaly, although three were not. Each also suffered other impairments, almost all of which emerge earlier than microcephaly because a smaller head is really a consequence of a brain that has failed to develop fully or has been damaged along the way.

One finding that surprised several experts could become an especially meaningful diagnostic clue. Many infections that target the brain produce clumps of calcium, called calcification. But in Zika-infected babies, calcification often occurred in an unusual place: at the intersection of the gray matter of the outer layer of the brain, the cortex, and the white matter of the layer just below that.

A reminder to anyone, male or female that is thinking about pregnancy, needs to exercise extreme caution to prevent mosquito bites in areas known to have the Zika virus.