An article from Scientific American
examines the timeline for growing replacement organs (the field of tissue engineering
), concluding that this advance may still be a decade or more away from reliable, widespread use. Scientists are currently working - with modest success - on growing smaller pieces of tissue using scaffolds
. This technique has been applied to bone and heart tissue, amongst others. Success with larger masses of tissue, and complex organs, is largely a matter of scaling up the process
- which has a lot to do with how well researchers can grow blood vessels and manipulate different cell types in the same structure.
View the Article Under Discussion: http://www.sciam.com/article.cfm?chanID=sa004&articleID=000424BA-9B29-1084-983483414B7F0000
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