Europeans transplant windpipe grown from stem cells

Discussion in 'Health and Lifestyle' started by Chris, Nov 19, 2008.

  1. Chris
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    Chris Gold Member

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    The science of healing is developing so quickly that it has become almost a cliché to describe a particular operation as a "breakthrough". Yet there is no doubt that the first successful transplant of a human windpipe, constructed partly from stem cells, is an astonishing milestone – one that could indeed mark the start of a new era in medicine.

    At long last, the glint in a researcher's eye has been turned into a significant advance in the clinic. Forget all the fuss about embryos and angst about playing God: this is unadulterated good news. We have proved that scientists can now fashion organs using a patient's own cells, eliminating the problems with rejection that have always plagued transplants. Today it is a trachea – tomorrow it could be a colon, even a heart.

    The venture was a textbook example of international collaboration, drawing on the talents of teams in Spain, Italy and Britain. To recap; the operation, on 30-year-old tuberculosis patient Claudia Castillo, took place in Barcelona, where doctors also had collected a three-inch segment of trachea from a 51-year-old donor who had died of a cerebral hemorrhage. They used a technique developed in Padua to strip the windpipe of its donor's original cells, a procedure that took six weeks, to create a "scaffold". At the same time, a team in Bristol used a "bioreactor" dreamt up in Milan to grow stem cells removed from Castillo's bone marrow. These cells were "seeded" into the donated windpipe, disguising the 'foreign' tissue that remained so Castillo's body would accept it as her own.

    Transplant of windpipe grown from stem cells heralds new era in medicine - Telegraph
     
  2. Angel Heart
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    Angel Heart Conservative Hippie

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  3. DiveCon
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