Stephan Grill, biophysicist at the TU Dresden Biotechnological Centre (BIOTEC), director at the MPI-CBG, and speaker of the Cluster of Excellence Physics of Life (PoL), opened the summer term of the Dresden Children’s University on April 2, 2019.
Around 550 children, ages 8 to 12, investigated questions like: How does an organism form? Every living being consists of millions of cells - How do all these cells know where to go and what to do? How can cells form organs or for example a hand?
Grill vividly explained how cells connect and how they exert forces in order to organise themselves and bring a set of cells and tissues into the right shape. Using the example of a fly, a fish, and a worm, he illustrated the similarity between growing organisms and a piece of modelling clay: in contrast to modelling clay, living organisms can form completely independently.
As thank you from the crowd, Stephan received thunderous applause, many questions, and autograph requests.