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What are mini brains? - Madeline Lancaster

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TEDEd Animation

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Shielded by our thick skulls and swaddled in layers of protective tissue, the human brain is extremely difficult to observe in action. Luckily, scientists can use brain organoids — pencil-eraser-sized masses of cells that function like human brains but aren’t part of an organism — to look closer. How do they do it? And is it ethical? Madeline Lancaster shares how to make a brain in a lab.

Can you think of any ethical questions that might arise from growing mini brain organoids in a laboratory setting?

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About TED-Ed Animations

TED-Ed Animations feature the words and ideas of educators brought to life by professional animators. Are you an educator or animator interested in creating a TED-Ed Animation? Nominate yourself here »

Meet The Creators

  • Educator Madeline Lancaster
  • Script Editor Elizabeth Cox
  • Animator Adam Wells
  • Composer Chris Reed
  • Sound Designer Chris Reed
  • Narrator Addison Anderson
  • Associate Producer Elizabeth Cox, Jessica Ruby
  • Content Producer Gerta Xhelo
  • Editorial Producer Alex Rosenthal
  • Director Adam Wells
  • Fact-Checker Francisco Diez

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