Vaginas, nostrils latest successes in lab-grown body parts

Posted by on Apr 11, 2014 at 9:46 am

Two new studies describe the latest achievements in growing body parts in a lab and transplanting them into people, this time with nostrils and vaginas.

Windpipes, bladders, blood vessels and other structures have previously been created in part from a patient’s own cells and then implanted. Eventually, scientists hope to tackle more complicated things like lungs and kidneys with this strategy, which is aimed at avoiding rejection of transplanted organs.

The latest experiments were published online Friday in the journal Lancet.

“They both show that by using fairly simple tissue engineering techniques, you can get real tissue forming where it’s supposed to,” said Dr. Martin Birchall, of The Ear Institute at University College London, who co-authored an accompanying commentary. He said the simple methods could be useful for making other body parts, including joint cartilage, bowels and the esophagus.

One experiment involved four teenage girls in Mexico who were born without vaginas because of a rare disorder. Currently, surgeons use tissue grafts to create vaginas for such patients, but that method carries a risk of complications.

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2 Responses to “Vaginas, nostrils latest successes in lab-grown body parts”

  1. Blacque Jacques Shellacque on 13/13/14 at 1:17 am

    “…this time with nostrils…”

    Don’t tell me – they got the first cell from Henry Waxman, right?