Scientists grow whole model of human embryo, without sperm or egg

7 September 2023

A stem-cell derived human embryo model showing blue cells (embryo), yellow cells (yolk sac) and pink cells (placenta). (Image credit: The Weizmann Institute of Science)

The BBC reports:

Scientists have grown an entity that closely resembles an early human embryo, without using sperm, eggs or a womb.

The Weizmann Institute team say their “embryo model”, made using stem cells, looks like a textbook example of a real 14-day-old embryo.

It even released hormones that turned a pregnancy test positive in the lab.

The ambition for embryo models is to provide an ethical way of understanding the earliest moments of our lives.

This research, published in the journal Nature, is described by the Israeli team as the first “complete” embryo model for mimicking all the key structures that emerge in the early embryo.

The Guardian reports:

The tiny balls of tissue were made by combining stem cells that arranged themselves into structures that mimic the 3D organisation of all the known features found in human embryos from one to two weeks old.

“This is the first embryo model that has structural compartment organisation and morphological similarity to a human embryo at day 14,” said Prof Jacob Hanna, who led the research at the Weizmann Institute in Israel. At two weeks, the balls of cells were about half a millimetre wide.

The field has produced a flurry of papers in recent months from scientists who have combined stem cells to create human embryo-like structures without the need for eggs or sperm.

Scientists grow whole model of human embryo, without sperm or egg – BBC News

Scientists grow synthetic human embryo without eggs, sperm, or womb

Scientists develop synthetic embryo, no egg or sperm needed

Be sure to ‘like’ us on Facebook


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here