EDWS incubation jar

This extraordinary looking artefact is the embryo incubator used to create the world’s first in vitro fertilisation [IVF] baby, Louise Brown. This pioneering technique was developed by former Churchill fellow Sir Robert Edwards, and Patrick Steptoe. The incubator has been held at the Churchill Archives Centre, but it is now off on loan to the Science Museum, where it will be on permanent display for the first time. The incubator can now be viewed in the museum’s Making the Modern World Gallery.

EDWS incubation jar handover

Sir Robert Edwards’s daughter, Jennie Joy hands over the incubator to Katie Dabin, curator of clinical and research medicine at the Science Museum.

The papers of Sir Bob Edwards are not moving with the incubator, they will remain at Churchill Archives Centre where they will be catalogued following the successful application for a Wellcome Trust grant. The cataloguing project will start imminently, with a completion date set for the end of 2018.

— Louise Watling, Archivist

Read more about the incubator

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