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Bioengineering

Bio-Scaffolds Could Help Create Organs for Transplant

20 years, 8 months ago

10257  0
Posted on Nov 11, 2003, 12 a.m. By Bill Freeman

US scientists have developed biological scaffolds, which release chemicals that prompt stem cells to develop into specific cell types.  Dr Shulamit Levenberg and colleagues at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) built the scaffold from two different types of material, one that is designed to disappear quickly, and another that provides long-lasting support to the developing tissue.

US scientists have developed biological scaffolds, which release chemicals that prompt stem cells to develop into specific cell types.  Dr Shulamit Levenberg and colleagues at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) built the scaffold from two different types of material, one that is designed to disappear quickly, and another that provides long-lasting support to the developing tissue. The idea behind the scaffold is that it will encourage cells to grow their own matrix to support themselves and develop their own blood supply. When tissues grown on the scaffolds were transplanted into mice, they flourished and successfully integrated themselves into the animals' blood vessel network. The hope is that the scaffolds will enable doctors to grow replacement organs to order, however the researchers stress that such a development is still a long way off.

SOURCE/REFERENCE: Reported by www.bbc.co.uk on the 18th October 2003.

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