Last Friday, the IB biology students got the chance to take part in a genetics conference where they learned about human embryology and stem cells in great detail. The topic of embryology included extensive details about the development of the fetus throughout eight weeks in a lab, and then for the remainder of gestation in utero. The second part of the lecture was about the process and benefits of stem cell research and cell replacement therapy.

The professor also mentioned applications of CRISPR technologies and its importance in genetics, which was very interesting and explained the concept of being able to remove genes and heal illnesses and diseases with the help of gRNA. He also mentioned that pig organs could be drained of cells and transplanted in a human with no complication due to compatible size. The skin stem cell research was also fascinating. He explained that by taking skin cells one can make a new organ for someone who really needs it and has specific compatible conditions. It is impressive that it could solve many issues regarding health complications, including experiential growth of human brains in a lab and exploring how scientists could discover deterioration quickly and with little difficulty. All in all, the conference was a really nice experience, and the students seemed to gain a lot of information and enjoy it. 

By Maggie Hewitt & Aubrey Bryan