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Scientists grow entire organ in world first


Posted on Monday, 25 August, 2014 | Comment icon 5 comments

Will organ growing techniques replace transplants ? Image Credit: NCI/NIH
A complete and fully functional thymus has been grown from cells in a groundbreaking new experiment.
It's the beginning of what could eventually see the traditional concept of organ donation and transplantation become obselete.

Scientists at the University of Edinburgh took an embryo from a mouse and reprogrammed its cells so that it began to transform in to the same type of cells found in the thymus. These were then placed back inside the mouse where they developed in to a complete and fully functional organ.

"This was a complete surprise to us, that we were really being able to generate a fully functional and fully organised organ starting with reprogrammed cells in really a very straightforward way," said researcher Prof Clare Blackburn.

The team has warned however that while this accomplishment is a significant step forward, growing organs inside humans using the same method is going to be a lot more complicated.

"It remains to be seen whether, in the long term, cells generated using direct reprogramming will be able to maintain their specialised form and avoid problems such as tumour formation," said regenerative therapies pioneer Dr Paolo de Coppi.

Source: BBC News | Comments (5)

Tags: Thymus, Organ, Transplant

Recent comments on this story
Comment icon #1 Posted by YukiEsmaElite0 on 25 August, 2014, 16:03
Oh, so could this cure diabetes then?
Comment icon #2 Posted by bubblykiss on 25 August, 2014, 16:38
So how much will it cost in combined total for me to destroy my current liver with standard vodka and Scotch and then get a replacement grown, shipped and slipped into the spot of my now ruined organ? Please say under $2,000?
Comment icon #3 Posted by calaf on 25 August, 2014, 22:59
Scientists grow entire organ in world first. I know you're all thinking it! (What, nobody?)
Comment icon #4 Posted by TheGreatBeliever on 26 August, 2014, 10:33
Wonder how r nanobots getting on
Comment icon #5 Posted by pallidin on 26 August, 2014, 17:38
Impressive first steps, to be sure.


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