A Successful Decellularized Vein Transplant

From the BBC: "A 10-year-old girl has had a major blood vessel in her body replaced with one grown with her own stem cells. ... A vein was taken from a dead man, stripped of its own cells and then bathed in stem cells from the girl, according to a study published in the Lancet. Surgeons said there was a "striking" improvement in her quality of life. This is the latest is a series of body parts grown, or engineered, to match the tissue of the patient. Last year, scientists created a synthetic windpipe and then coated it with a patient's stem cells. ... In this case, other options such as using artificial grafts to bypass the blockage, had failed. ... It used a process known as "decellularisation". It starts with a donor vein which is then effectively put through a washing machine in which repeated cycles of enzymes and detergents break down and wash away the person's cells. It leaves behind a scaffold. This is then bathed in stem cells from the 10-year-old's bone marrow. The end product is a vein made from the girl's own cells. ... The young girl was spared the trauma of having veins harvested from the deep neck or leg with the associated risk of lower limb disorders."

Link: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-18428889


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