Francesco Redi's Cell Theory


Cell theory refers to the currently accepted concept that all living organisms are made up of individual biological cells. Centuries of theorizing and experimentation were compiled by some of science's greatest minds to prove this theory correct.

Francesco Redi

  • Francesco Redi was an Italian physician and scientist born in 1626. He was also a prolific author, writing both creatively and scientifically. He produced the groundbreaking book "Experiments on the Origins of Insects" in 1668.

Redi's Theory

  • During Redi's time a common theory was abiogenesis, which asserted that living organisms can spontaneously grow from dead or inorganic matter. Francesco's work to disprove abiogenesis would later play a crucial role in the development of cell theory.

Experiment Design

  • The supporting argument for abiogenesis at the time stemmed from the appearance of maggots on rotting meat; it was thought that the meat was turning into maggots. Redi performed a series of experiments with meat, leaving some meat tightly covered and some uncovered. He discovered that maggots only appeared on the uncovered meat. He also spent time studying the maggots and realized that they eventually turned into flies. His research didn't garner much respect at the time, but it did serve to cast doubt on the spontaneous generation theory.


  • Photo Credit two flys image by Irina Kodentseva from
Promoted By Zergnet



You May Also Like

  • The Theory of Biogenesis

    Biogenesis is any process by which lifeforms produce other lifeforms. For example, a spider lays eggs that become other spiders. This premise...

  • Modern Cell Theory

    The science of microbiology has its roots in a very simple fact; All life is built on cells. This seemingly small detail...

  • Why Do Maggots Grow on Meat?

    Prior to the 1600s, laymen and scientists alike commonly accepted that living organisms could be produced from nonliving organisms. This belief, known...

  • Why Are Cells Important for Living Organisms?

    In 1665, British scientist Robert Hooke peered through a microscope at a paper-thin slice of cork and saw it was “all perforated...

  • Control Groups in Science Projects

    Most experiments are made up of a control group and an experimental group. The results from each group are measured and compared...

  • 3 Tenets of Cell Theory

    Cell theory, also known as cell doctrine, explains that all organisms consist of cells. The concept was formally established in 1839, and...

Related Searches

Check It Out

How to Build and Grow a Salad Garden On Your Balcony

Is DIY in your DNA? Become part of our maker community.
Submit Your Work!