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Cells Exhibition Opens at Maryland Science Center
Date:3/26/2009

ab where visitors can explore the difference between adult and embryonic stem cells, transferring the stem cells to a virtual petri dish and watching them grow; and a plastinated human brain displaying videomicroscopy of the latest research on brain stem cells.

Scientists who specialize in cell biology interact with visitors throughout the exhibition, answering queries from the "Wall of Questions," and participating in live video conferences and debates focusing on the future of cell biology and the ethics of cell research. Visitors can also participate in cell research by conducting experiments in the Maryland Science Center's expanded wet lab connected to the exhibit.

To create the exhibition Cells: The Universe Inside Us, the Maryland Science Center collaborated with expert scientific advisors from Johns Hopkins University, the University of Maryland, and the National Center for Microscopy and Imaging Research at the University of California San Diego. The Maryland Science Center also partnered with the Liz Lerman Dance Exchange, who interpreted cell behavior through videotaped sequences where dancers interpret the words of scientists and engage visitors in moving their own bodies to explore the microscopic world. Students and faculty from the Maryland Institute College of Art worked with Maryland Science Center staff to develop interactive prototypes and final interactive components for the exhibition.

Content for Cells: The Universe Inside Us was based on the observations from focus groups of children, high school students, adults, and teachers. Findings from the focus groups indicated visitors' understanding of cells and potential interactive experiences on the subject.

Cells: The Universe Inside Us was conceived, developed, and produced by the Maryland Science Center. A traveling version of Cells: The Universe Inside Us will tour national science museums.

Cells: The Universe Inside Us was made possible i
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