New Organs can be created from your own Stem Cells: Study

In Research, Stem Cell by Paul Martin2 Comments

New Organs can be created from your own Stem Cells: StudyBy now, most people have read stories about how to “grow your own organs” using stem cells is just a breakthrough away. Despite the hype, this breakthrough has been elusive. A new report published in the March 2009 issue of The FASEB Journal (http://www.fasebj.org) brings bioengineered organs a step closer, as scientists from Stanford and New York University Langone Medical Center describe how they were able to use a “scaffolding” material extracted from the groin area of mice on which stem cells from blood, fat, and bone marrow grew. This advance clears two major hurdles to bioengineered replacement organs, namely a matrix on which stem cells can form a 3-dimensional organ and transplant rejection.

“The ability to provide stem cells with a scaffold to grow and differentiate into mature cells could revolutionize the field of organ transplantation,” said Geoffrey Gurtner, M.D., Associate Professor of Surgery at Stanford University and a senior researcher involved in the work.

To make this advance, Gurtner and colleagues first had to demonstrate that expendable pieces of tissue (called “free flaps”) could be sustained in the laboratory.  To do this, they harvested a piece of tissue containing blood vessels, fat, and skin from the groin area of rats and used a bioreactor to provide nutrients and oxygen to keep it alive. Then, they seeded the extracted tissue with stem cells before it was implanted back into the animal. Once the tissue was back in the mice, the stem cells continued to grow on their own and the implant was not rejected. This suggests that if the stem cells had been coaxed into becoming an organ, the organ would have “taken hold” in the animal’s body. In addition to engineering the stem cells to form a specific organ around the extracted tissue, they also could be engineered to express specific proteins which allows for even greater potential uses of this technology.

“Myth has its lures, but so does modern science. The notion of using one tissue as the scaffold for another is as old as the Birth of Venus to the Book of Genesis,” said Gerald Weissmann, M.D., Editor-in-Chief of The FASEB Journal. “Eve may or may not have been formed from Adam’s rib, but these experiments show exactly how stem cell techniques can be used to turn one’s own tissue into newly-formed, architecturally-sound organs.”

The FASEB Journal (http://www.fasebj.org) is published by the Federation of the American Societies for Experimental Biology (FASEB) and is the most cited journal worldwide according to the Institute for Scientific Information.  FASEB comprises 22 nonprofit societies with more than 80,000 members, making it the largest coalition of biomedical research associations in the United States.  FASEB advances biological science through collaborative advocacy for research policies that promote scientific progress and education and lead to improvements in human health.

Paul Martin

Paul Martin

I am the Director of Multimedia at ProTrainings, as well as the primary blogger here. I take care of the video editing, graphic design and corporate branding that you see on every video and every page on this site, as well as at ProCPR®, ProFirstAid®, ProBloodborne, StudentCPR, etc. My work is literally everywhere that ProTrainings goes. I also handle our Twitter accounts, so be sure to follow us there, if you use twitter! You can be sure that I’m not just an average joe writing this blog, but one of the founders of the company.

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Comments

  1. Pamela

    Will this type of stem cell growth also produce a new for individual with CHF? If so, wouldn’t the cost be greater than insurances would want to pay? Is it possible that complications could still set in? What are the likely chances that this experiment will be granted to the human race in the next five years? When will you determine the life expectancy on the new organ once implanted or has that even been calculated? Will it be based on the type of organ grown with the particular stem cell in use?

  2. Maha Mahmoud Akl

    Liver is badly needed to be recreated by stem cells especially when it is in an advanced cirrhotic stage…Could we dram of making a little healthy liver organ from stem cells?

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