Scientists took one step closer toward the holy grail of organ transplant, growing a functioning organ in vitro and transplanting them:
In the latest work, Harald Ott of Massachusetts General hospital led a team of scientists who grew a kidney by using an experimental technique that has previously been used to create working hearts, lungs and livers.
Ott first took a rat kidney and stripped out its functional cells using a solution of detergent. That left behind a white cellular matrix, the collagen scaffold that gives the organ its three-dimensional structure.
His team then introduced kidney and blood vessel cells from newborn rats onto the scaffold and cultured the growing organ for 12 days, until the cells had grown to cover the scaffold. The team then implanted the organ into a living rat, where it successfully filtered the animal's blood and produced urine.