It is the longest scientists have ever been able to keep them alive outside of a mother.
University of Cambridge scientists announced this week that they successfully able to grow living two-week-old human embryos in a lab.
Using a culture method previously tested to grow mouse embryos outside of a mother, the teams were able to conduct almost hour by hour observations of human embryo development to see how they develop and organize themselves up to day 13.
“This it the most enigmatic and mysterious stage of human development,” said Magdalena Zernicka-Goetz, a University of Cambridge professor who co-led the work.
International law bans anything longer than 14 days, a limit which scientists are now calling to be reviewed, leaving everyone to wonder how long it’ll be until there is no limit and we’re all living in Brave New World/Gattaca.
“Longer cultures could provide absolutely critical information for basic human biology,” [Zernicka-Goetz] said. “But this would of course raise the next question – of where we should put the next limit.”
Written by Melissa Dykes