The Wonder of the Fertilized Egg

The opening cast members of the baby-making play are simply a sperm and an egg and a saucy Marvin Gaye song. Once these two cells are joined, they begin producing lots of cells in a small space. The human embryo soon looks like a tiny mulberry. (Indeed, one early development stage is called the morula, Latin for mulberry.) Your mulberry’s first decision is practical: It has to decide what part becomes baby’s body and what part becomes baby’s shelter. This happens quickly. Certain cells are assigned to housing construction, creating the placenta and the water balloon in which the embryo will float, the amniotic sac. Certain cells are assigned the duties of constructing the embryo, creating a knot of internal tissues termed the inner cell mass.
We need to stop right here and contemplate something: The inner cell mass at this stage possesses a cell whose entire offspring will form the human brain. The most complex information-processing device ever constructed is on its way. And it starts out a fraction of the size of the period at the end of this sentence.
I have been studying this stuff for more than 20 years. I still find it amazing. As scientist Lewis Thomas put it in Lives of a Cell:“The mere existence of such a cell should be one of the great astonishments of the earth. People ought to be walking around all day, all through their waking hours, calling to each other in endless wonderment, talking of nothing except that cell”. Go ahead, call your neighbor; I’ll wait.


The process will produce a human brain from a single cell.

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 Brain Rules for Baby: How to Raise a Smart and Happy Child from Zero to Five
Books, Brochures, and Chapters>Book:  Medina , John (2010-10-12), Brain Rules for Baby: How to Raise a Smart and Happy Child from Zero to Five, Pear Press, Retrieved on 2011-07-27
Folksonomies: parenting pregnancy babies child development