Skip to comments.Lab-grown kidneys transplanted into rats
Posted on 04/16/2013 7:16:05 PM PDT by neverdem
Engineered organs produce urine, though not as efficiently as natural ones.
Scientists at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston have fitted rats with kidneys that were grown in a lab from stripped-down kidney scaffolds. When transplanted, these 'bioengineered' organs starting filtering the rodents blood and making urine.
The team, led by organ-regeneration specialist Harald Ott, started with the kidneys of recently deceased rats and used detergent to strip away the cells, leaving behind the underlying scaffold of connective tissues such as the structural components of blood vessels. They then regenerated the organ by seeding this scaffold with two cell types: human umbilical-vein cells to line the blood vessels, and kidney cells from newborn rats to produce the other tissues that make up the organ. The work is described today in Nature Medicine1. Ott and his colleagues developed this method in 2008, and he has since used it to grow hearts2 and lungs.
This study reports important milestones toward engineering replacement kidney grafts [and] shows the potential for this strategy, says urologist Anthony Atala, who directs the Institute for Regenerative Medicine at Wake Forest School of Medicine in Winston-Salem, North Carolina.
If the work can be replicated, the scientists involved have clearly accomplished a tour de force and deserve accolades, adds William Fissell, a nephrologist at Vanderbilt University in Nashville, Tennessee.
Currently, patients who develop the most severe forms of kidney disease can be kept alive with dialysis, but only a transplant will cure them. And in the United States alone, around 100,000 people are waiting for a donor kidney.
Other research groups have used tissue-engineering techniques to develop external kidney-assisting devices using human cells, and some have already passed early clinical trials3, 4. But Ott argues that his bioengineered kidneys, although much farther behind in development, have the benefit of being...
(Excerpt) Read more at nature.com ...
KENYAN-grown RAT transplanted into White House
Since my fiancee is on dialysis for the rest of his life unless he gets a new kidney, this is exciting news!
This isn't a problem of technology or medicine, but of government. Can you imagine 100,000 people waiting around for a car or a hamburger or a flight?
The market would fix this disparity quickly, if it were allowed to.
We would also never see blood shortages if the medical free market were allowed to function.