BioFutures: Growing Brain Organoids in the Lab

A Conversation with Neuroscientist Alysson Muotri

Thursday, February 6, 2020 • 8:00 p.m.

Osher Gallery 1, Kanbar Forum

Free for Donors and and After Dark members.

Adults Only (18+)

Note: Ticket includes admission to After Dark (6–10 p.m.). Seating for BioFutures is limited and first come, first served.

Using stem cells—like those found in our earliest embryonic selves—scientists have learned to grow miniature structures, called brain organoids. How similar are organoids to a real human brain, and what can we do with them? So far, scientists have seen brain organoids send signals in coordinated patterns that look somewhat like the brain waves in a fetus.

Join a conversation with leading organoid researcher Alysson Muotri to explore how brain organoids might help us study human brain disorders and the very earliest stages of brain development.

Alysson Muotri is a Professor of Medicine at University of California, San Diego. His research focuses on modeling neurological diseases, such as autism spectrum disorders.

BioFutures is a six-part series of conversations with leading experts in the field exploring how emerging bioscience technologies are changing our world.

As genetics and biotechnology continually evolve, surprising scenarios are emerging. The DNA editing technology CRISPR, for example, may enable us to fix disease-causing genes in the human body, and it’s brought us the first genetically engineered babies. A sample of our DNA can tell us about our ancestral past, but might also reveal things that we’d rather keep private? How can we make the most of exciting advances, while also defining our ethical boundaries? Join biologists and other experts in conversations about what genetics and other technologies reveals about our past, our selves, and our shared future.