The National Institutes of Health (NIH) announced $46 million in research award funding for the Human Placenta Project. The award funding will support technology development and testing to assess placental function throughout pregnancy, with the ultimate goal of improving pregnancy outcomes and overall health.

The Human Placenta Project is a collaborative initiative of research institutes and facilities around the world that looks to revolutionize understanding of the placenta. Yoel Sadovsky, MD of Magee-Womens Research Institute, says “Techniques such as ultrasound and magnetic resonance imaging offer physicians a restricted view of the placenta in people.” The NIH funding, which supports 19 projects, will support development of safe, noninvasive methods to monitor the placenta in real time, throughout all stages of pregnancy, and will also support research on environmental factors that may affect placental function.

Read more about the Human Placenta Project’s funding.