The small organs are being made from human skin cells which are turned into neutrons and printed in 3D to resemble the structure of the brain.
Scientists hope that the micro brains will aid research that could help battle the damage done by Alzheimers disease.
Professor Edik Rafalov of Aston University in Birmingham told The Telegraph: “This is kind of science fiction. We’re trying to help neurons to connect and to grow together so that, ultimately, we can replace parts of the brain that have been damaged by, for example, dementia.
“In simple terms, with dementia, part of the brain is not working properly. If you can replace this part, then you can return people to a normal life.
“It’s no exaggeration to say the project could improve and prolong hundreds of thousands of lives.”
Alzheimer’s disease effects at least 520,000 people in Britain alone.
Britain’s Alzheimer’s Society said that the disease is the most common form of dementia. The symptoms include “memory loss and difficulties with thinking, problem-solving or language”.
“The disease most affects the brain and proteins build up in the brain to form structures called plaques and tangles.
“This leads to the loss of connections between nerve cells and eventually to the death of nerve cells and loss of brain tissue. People who develop Alzheimers have a shortage of important chemicals in their brains.”
However there is no cure for the illness which gets progressively worst over time as more parts of the brain are damaged. Scientists are still unsure of what causes the illness to develop.
Around 800,000, people have dementia and that figure is set to rise to 1.2 million people by 2040 as Britain’s population ages.
It is hoped that the micro brains could provide a way to for scientists to run tests on them in a bid to mimic the symptoms of a patient who is suffering from the degenerative disease.
The lab brains only grow to 2mm across and could be vital in the fight against the disease.
Dr Eric Hill, the Programme Director for MSc Stem cells and Regenerative Medicine at Aston University told The Telegraph that the work was exciting as the brains act like real brain tissue.
But he admitted that the team faces some “real challenges, beyond the difficulties of creating human brain tissue.”
He said: “Conditions such as Alzheimer’s present themselves in older patients – so we need to find a way of accelerating the ageing process in our laboratory brains so we can understand how…