Toggle Main Menu Toggle Search

Open Access padlockePrints

A pictorial account of the human embryonic heart between 3.5 and 8 weeks of development

Lookup NU author(s): Professor Bob Anderson



This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (CC BY 4.0).


© 2022, The Author(s). Heart development is topographically complex and requires visualization to understand its progression. No comprehensive 3-dimensional primer of human cardiac development is currently available. We prepared detailed reconstructions of 12 hearts between 3.5 and 8 weeks post fertilization, using Amira® 3D-reconstruction and Cinema4D®-remodeling software. The models were visualized as calibrated interactive 3D-PDFs. We describe the developmental appearance and subsequent remodeling of 70 different structures incrementally, using sequential segmental analysis. Pictorial timelines of structures highlight age-dependent events, while graphs visualize growth and spiraling of the wall of the heart tube. The basic cardiac layout is established between 3.5 and 4.5 weeks. Septation at the venous pole is completed at 6 weeks. Between 5.5 and 6.5 weeks, as the outflow tract becomes incorporated in the ventricles, the spiraling course of its subaortic and subpulmonary channels is transferred to the intrapericardial arterial trunks. The remodeling of the interventricular foramen is complete at 7 weeks.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Hikspoors JPJM, Kruepunga N, Mommen GMC, Kohler SE, Anderson RH, Lamers WH

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Communications Biology

Year: 2022

Volume: 5

Online publication date: 11/03/2022

Acceptance date: 09/02/2022

Date deposited: 28/03/2022

ISSN (electronic): 2399-3642

Publisher: Springer Nature


DOI: 10.1038/s42003-022-03153-x

PubMed id: 35277594


Altmetrics provided by Altmetric