In the news

Examining the State of the Science of Mammalian Embryo Model Systems. The National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine of the U.S.A. proceedings. January 2020.

The scientific and biomedical perspectives opened by stem cell-based embryo models are discussed, including for blastoids. 

Blastoid: the backstory of the formation of blastocyst-like structure solely from stem cells. The Node. June 27, 2018.


Ep. 118: “Synthetic Embryos” Featuring Nicolas Rivron. The Stem cell podcastJune 5, 2018.

Analysis from Patrick Tam on [Rivron NC et al., Nature 2018 , 557(7703):106-111]. F1000Prime, 24 May 2018.


Synthetic embryos made from stem cells. BBC World News. Live interview. 3 May 2018.

Discussion about the ethics and applications of the blastoid system.

Scientists build 'synthetic embryos. BBC News. 3 May 2018.

Scientists have built "synthetic" embryos in their laboratory using mouse cells other than sperm and eggs.

Artificial embryo created using only stem cells. CNN3 May 2018.

Embryo-like structure synthesized in a lab could help decipher infertility.

Building early embryos. Nature Podcast. 3 May 2018.

Discussion with the people from Nature Podcast about the blastoid system.

Expert reaction to study reporting the development of embryo-like. Science media centre. 2 May 2018.

Comments from Prof. Robin Lovell-Badge (The Francis Crick Institute), Dr. Teresa Rayon (The Francis Crick Institute), Dr. Dusko Ilic (King's College London), Dr. Harry Leitch (MRC London institute), and Prof. Magdalena Zernicka-Goetz (University of Cambridge).

Scientists Have Created Synthetic Embryos. Fortune3 May 2018.

Here's What That Could Mean for Humans.

Ethicists strike alarm about synthetic embryos: "There are no rules yet". Volkskrant newspaper. 15 Apr 2017  

The Volkskrant is a Dutch daily morning newspaper..
Ethicists and scientists are alarming for a scientific development with potentially severe consequences. Stem cell biologists have discovered how to make "synthetic embryos" by sticking loose cells together as legoblocks. That calls for scientific and ethical debates because there are no rules for such entities.

Building organs, block by block. NRC Hasselblad. 12 Nov, 2016  NRC is an internationally oriented daily evening newspaper published in the Netherland.Medical Technologies to grow new organs have not yet fulfilled their big promises. Maastricht tissue engineers are trying from the bottom up. They start with a single cell. The key lies in developmental biology. The cells themselves do the work, to form organs - that's the trick. "So it is in an embryo," says researcher Nicolas Rivron. "Only in this way it is possible to accurately build the complex structure of organs."

Shaping cells to mature together. Science. 15 Apr 2016. Comment by Marc Lavine on our paper Advance Material paper. DOI10.1002/adma.201505723 (2016).Science is the peer-reviewed academic journal of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS).Tissue engineering requires the use of degradable scaffolds that provide temporary support and an architectural guide that controls the initial growth and proliferation of seeded cells to form a desired tissue. Vrij et al. develop a more general approach in which cellular aggregates progressively fuse and assemble to form tissues. By controlling the general shape of the well into which the cells or clusters are seeded, they introduce anisotropy into both the shape of the growing objects and in deformation upon compaction. This encourages the formation of a primitive vasculature and self-scaffolding as the final tissue is assembled from the smaller building blocks.