The Brave New World of synthetic humans

The breakthrough of lab-grown embryos

Last week, Israeli scientists announced that they had created a model human embryo without using sperm or eggs; are we heading for a future where procreation is an entirely technological, not biological, phenomenon? Genetics and reproduction specialist Dr Güneş Taylor explains what this means for the future of human reproduction.



It was recently reported that researchers have created models of human embryos out of stem cells in a lab environment, without the use of sperm or eggs, grown outside the womb. Can you explain what exactly this means? Is this a biological entity that could grow further, and go on to be become a human? 

A few years ago, scientists found to their surprise that, when under the right conditions, mouse stem cells within the lab can self-organise into structures akin to those seen during early mouse development. This caused much excitement as people wondered whether it would be possible to do the same wit

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