CGI image of baby in a womb. Image credit: BDH for The BBC

The story of how human life is made

100 Trillion cells. 280 days. One human life. The person you are was decided before you were even born.

Countdown to Life: The Extraordinary Making of You is a fascinating new three-part BBC series produced in partnership with the OU, telling the thrilling story of how human life is made.

The way you smile, the environments you thrive in, the colour of your children’s eyes – everything about you depends on an elaborate dance of biology, timed to precision. From the moment you’re conceived to the moment you’re born, each critical event in the womb can change your life forever.

Presented by leading science journalist Michael Mosley, the series takes viewers on the incredible journey from the moment of conception through to the finale of birth, revealing how each critical event in the womb can change your life forever.

From the makers of Human Universe and Inside The Human Body, this blockbuster series combines emotionally charged human stories with ground-breaking computer generated imagery (CGI). Each episode features CGI imagery inside the womb that charts human development as it’s never been rendered before. From a single cell to a full term baby, the graphics team behind the series combined specialist photographic techniques, medical scans and the latest software tools to create an inner world of striking power and wonder.

Countdown to Life was commissioned by the Open University’s Open Media Unit with support from the OU’s Faculty of Science.