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Animation Disorder of Sex Development (DSD)


Animatie Disorders of Sex Development 

This web based model is meant for students, clinicians (in training), scientists, patients and caretakers to generate a structured educational environment to understand the principles of  normal sex development as well as disturbances to is, currently referred to as Disorders of Sex Development (DSD). It fills a niche in current available visually based information represented in a structured, clear and understandable format. The authors feel that it will be of value at different levels of education, possibly to be adjusted to the reader’s knowledge and age regarding complexity. Therefore, suggestions for improvement(s) and adjustments are highly appreciated.   

The design is in principle based on two separate areas. The first is ”Normal Sex Development”, including 70 pages, of which each page represents a significant  step in the process of normal sex development, in chronological order. It is the baseline on which information on the main variants of DSD are represented, under the second area, referred to as “Disorders of Sex Development (DSD)”.

In the DSD area, the Introduction section overviews the link between normal development and DSD, based on the information given in the first area, after which the different variants (currently 14 selected in total) are presented. These are in the same format as used for the normal development representation, allowing a detailed comparison. The representations also include the major clinical characteristics based on which the patients are identified. In addition, an informative section is presented regarding “Parameters related to Germ Cell Cancer Development”. This is one of the significant clinical issues related to diagnose and treat patients with DSD, especially concerning gonadectomy. Early diagnosis and treatment can prevent development of an invasive, possible even metastatic, cancer, for which systemic treatment is required for cure, with possible long term side effects.

The format of the representation is designed by Prof. dr. Leendert Looijenga (Medical Cell Biologist), in collaboration further developed with Drs. Katja Wolffenbuttel (Pediatric Urologist), Prof. dr. Sten Drop (Emeritus Professor Pediatric Endocrinology), and Dr. Katharina Biermann (Pathologist), all from the Erasmus Medical Center Rotterdam (Erasmus MC, The Netherlands). The project is partly financial supported by the European Society of Pediatric Endocrinology (ESPE). Michele Belder (Medisch Multimedia, Rotterdam), is acknowledged for making the actual environment.  Dr. Hans Stoop and Frank van der Panne (Department of Pathology, Erasmus MC) are thanked for their support in generating the anatomical and histological images. 

Contact for further information or suggestions: Prof. dr. Leendert Looijenga (