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Week 1 of ...

posted Aug 15, 2010, 1:52 PM by Isaac Salazar   [ updated Aug 15, 2010, 2:06 PM ]

the Development of the unborn Child Bulletin Insert: Today I was conceived in my mother’s womb. If you could see into my chromosomes, you could tell if I am a boy or a girl. I am very, very tiny, because my body has only one cell. As tiny as I am, my single-celled body contains DNA in my 46 human chromosomes and 20,000 to 25,000 protein-coding genes. The data in my DNA contains a lot of information – over 750 megabytes, enough information to fill a 33-volume encyclopedia, five times over. The amount of information contained in the cell that tells the cell what to do with this data is astronomical.

sadadWhile my body has just one cell, scientists call me a “zygote.” About two or three days after conception, my one celled-body will divide into two cells. Next, one of my two cells will divide again, so I will have three cells. Then, one of these three cells will divide, so I will have four cells. After that, all of my cells will split in two, so the number of my cells will increase from four, to eight, to sixteen, and so on. At the 16-cell stage, scientists will call me a “morula.”

As a “morula,” I am taking my first trip, traveling through one of my Mother’s fallopian tubes, heading for the uterus, or womb, where there will be food and shelter. The womb will be my home for the next nine months, where I can safely grow and develop. About four to five days after conception, scientists will call me a “blastocyst.”