(BBC News) As she speaks, Madeleine Lancaster rests her hand on her pregnant belly. “Oh they’re about six or seven months along now”. At this point her progeny measure about four millimetres across. She’s growing a few hundred, and each has around two million neurons already.
Fortunately, she’s not talking about an enormous brood of unborn babies – though she is expecting one normal human. No, this scientist is referring to a batch of developing human brains.
We’re in the MRC’s brand new molecular biology lab in Cambridge – a sprawling warren of glass-fronted laboratories, space-age equipment and hallways which seem to stretch for miles. It’s not secret or underground, but the £212m building is home to a number of futuristic projects worthy of their own Hollywood movie.
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