A pseudo-embryo forms


Scientists watch as stem cells organise into a proto-foetus.


A seven day old gastroloid, made from 300 mouse-derived stem cells, organising itself into a pseudo-embryo.

A seven day old gastroloid, made from 300 mouse-derived stem cells, organising itself into a pseudo-embryo.

Mehmet Girgin, EPFL

Researchers from Switzerland’s University of Geneva, the University of Cambridge, UK, and the French Federal Institute of Technology Lausanne have induced a glob comprising just 300 mouse-derived embryos to self-organise into a pseudo embryo.

Writing in the journal Nature, scientists led by Cambridge’s Alfonso Martinez Arias reveal that in the right conditions the group of stem cells – known as a gastroloid – will spontaneously form into a three-dimensional structure, and then start to differentiate along the ventral, dorsal and lateral planes.

The results, the researchers say, looks very similar to the rear half of a mouse embryo between six to 10 days after development begins.

  1. http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41586-018-0578-0
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