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Fetuses Can Recognize Faces. How Will This Change the Abortion Debate?


Fetuses Can Recognize Faces. How Will This Change the Abortion Debate?
Big Think

How aware are fetuses of the outside world? Previous research have found that late in the third trimester, they can respond to their mother’s voice and even music. British scientists recently took our understanding one step farther. Researchers at Lancaster University projected light inside the uteruses of pregnant mothers. Some contained an image much like a face, including eyes and a nose.Newborns are preoccupied with faces. This may be due to their need to bond with their parents. Here, scientists wanted to know if this was true of third trimester fetuses, as well. They found that a 34-week old fetus will actually turn its head to see a light pattern that looks like a face. While most ignored patterns that didn’t appear face-like.The patterns consisted of three red dots presented as either an upside down triangle, which represented a face, or a topside up one.

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