Laboratory of Stem Cell Bioengineering, Institute of Bioengineering, School of Life Sciences (SV) and School of Engineering (STI), Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne (EPFL), Lausanne, Switzerland. Electronic address: [Email]
Research in developmental biology has been recently enriched by a multitude of in vitro models recapitulating key milestones of mammalian embryogenesis. These models obviate the challenge posed by the inaccessibility of implanted embryos, multiply experimental opportunities, and favor approaches traditionally associated with organoids and tissue engineering. Here, we provide a perspective on how these models can be applied to study the mechano-geometrical contributions to early mammalian development, which still escape direct verification in species that develop in utero. We thus outline new avenues for robust and scalable perturbation of geometry and mechanics in ways traditionally limited to non-implanting developmental models.