Growing embryonic tissues on a chip

It's no surprise that using human embryos for biological and medical research comes with many ethical concerns. Correct though it is to proceed with caution in these matters, the fact is that much science would benefit from ...

Embryos' signals take multiple paths

Rice University scientists have found significant differences between the methods signaling pathways use to prompt cells to differentiate – that is, whether to become organs, bone, blood vessels, nerves or skin.

Chimpanzee 'mini-brains' hint at secrets of human evolution

At some point during human evolution, a handful of genetic changes triggered a dramatic threefold expansion of the brain's neocortex, the wrinkly outermost layer of brain tissue responsible for everything from language to ...

Not junk: 'Jumping gene' is critical for early embryo

A so-called "jumping gene" that researchers long considered either genetic junk or a pernicious parasite is actually a critical regulator of the first stages of embryonic development, according to a new study in mice led ...

A first look at the earliest decisions that shape a human embryo

The factors that shape the destiny of a cell, like that of a fully formed person, remain something of a mystery. Why, for example, does one stem cell in a human embryo become a neuron rather than a muscle cell? And why does ...

Scientists generate an atlas of the human genome using stem cells

Scientists from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem have generated an atlas of the human genome using a state-of-the-art gene editing technology and human embryonic stem cells, illuminating the roles that our genes play in ...

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