A recent study indicates that chromosomal defects that cause miscarriage and
birth defects like Down's syndrome can be attributed to a certain feature in
the egg cell division process. The findings are more specific in case of women over
40-years of age since they are at a higher risk of miscarriage than younger
women. By the time a woman reaches 40, half f the eggs she ovulates are
chromosomally abnormal unlike women in their 20s whose only 10% eggs are chromosomally
Researchers from the Washington State University found that in certain cases the egg cell continues to divide even if the chromosomes are not arranged properly. This can lead to an abnormal number of chromosomes resulting in miscarriage or birth defects. However researchers have not found any solution to this problem.
This study is published in the current issue of the journal Current Biology.