Tissue Engineers Make Working Kidneys in the Lab - For Rats

Rat kidneyCredit: Nature.comResearchers at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston have engineered working kidneys for rats with the goal of eventually creating made-to-order human kidneys for transplant. From the abstract in Nature Medicine:

Approximately 100,000 individuals in the United States currently await kidney transplantation, and 400,000 individuals live with end-stage kidney disease requiring hemodialysis. The creation of a transplantable graft to permanently replace kidney function would address donor organ shortage and the morbidity associated with immunosuppression. Such a bioengineered graft must have the kidney's architecture and function and permit perfusion, filtration, secretion, absorption and drainage of urine. We decellularized rat, porcine and human kidneys by detergent perfusion, yielding acellular scaffolds with vascular, cortical and medullary architecture, a collecting system and ureters. To regenerate functional tissue, we seeded rat kidney scaffolds with epithelial and endothelial cells and perfused these cell-seeded constructs in a whole-organ bioreactor. The resulting grafts produced rudimentary urine in vitro when perfused through their intrinsic vascular bed. When transplanted in an orthotopic position in rat, the grafts were perfused by the recipient's circulation and produced urine through the ureteral conduit in vivo.

In the future, physicians could take cells from a person suffering from kidney failure and perfuse them into a stripped down pig kidney scaffold. The new revitalized bioengineered kidneys that would replace the failed kidneys would be an immunological match to the patient.

In the meantime, other researchers are working on ways to create whole organs by means of 3-d bioprinting. The 21st century is great!

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  • robc||

    Lab grown long pig is not far away!

  • AlmightyJB||


  • Pro Libertate||

    All of these developments, just in time for medical science to be killed by socialism.

  • albo||

    Somewhere in California, Larry Niven is smiling.

    (Stop smiling and get back to writing, Larry.)

  • robc||

    Have you read what he has written recently?

    Im a huge fan, but I would prefer he keep smiling.

  • Pro Libertate||

    Yeah, wish he could write another great one.

  • albo||

    I know. But that recent one with Greg Benford is pretty interesting. (At least the big dumb object everybody is riding on is an interesting thought experiment.)

  • robc||

    It looks like he was pessimistic and science is going to beat out the public's thirst for fresh organs.

  • Pro Libertate||

    So no career in the ARM, is that what you're telling me?

  • tarran||

    ... just you wait... someone will have to do the mother hunts.

  • Pro Libertate||

    I was going to join later, when organlegging got serious.

  • EDG reppin' LBC||

    -a large onion, peeled, topped and hollowed out to fit a lab kidney

    -1 lab kidney, trimmed and cored

    -salt and butter

    -beef or lamb stock

    -a shot of rum

    -chopped parsley

    Preheat the oven to 350°

    Parboil the onion just until it begins to soften, about five minutes.
    Generously salt and pepper the onion inside and out, do the same for the kidney, push the kidney into the onion and cover with the lid you cut from the onion.
    Scatter the onion’s scrapings around it in an ovenproof dish deep enough to allow a cover over the onion(s) and fill with stock halfway up the side of the onion(s).
    Bake covered for an hour, then pour the rum over the kidney, replace the top and cover, and bake for another 30 minutes.
    Serve the onion(s) in bowls with a sprinkle of chopped parsley, a ladle of the broth and hot buttered toast.

  • AlmightyJB||

    I just watched Hannibal yesterday. That scene at the end still is a little much for me.

  • Brett L||

    If you just imagine those really were Ray Liota's brains, his career arc makes so much sense.

  • Tim||

    Now I gotta pee.

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    Those asshole scientists. Those of us with only one kidney could use another lab-grown one but no, they're making them for their pet rats and pigs and whatever JUST TO RUB IT IN MY RENALLY DEFICIENT FACE.

  • SugarFree||

    Fucking rats get all the luck.

  • Pro Libertate||

    We're going to keep testing and testing and testing until we breed a rat that is practically unkillable, with, of course, super-intelligence.

  • Dweebston||

    Like a certain pan-dimensional hyper-being?

  • Pro Libertate||

    Mice, not rats.

  • Dweebston||

    To be honest, I can't tell the difference. They both go into the snake tank.

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    Meh. Load them up with Splenda. That's seems to be their Kryptonite.

  • AlmightyJB||

    Dude. I'm gonna need a liver too so get busy.

  • sarcasmic||

    Same here.

  • Brett L||

    No love for SF's worthless pancreas?

  • EDG reppin' LBC||

    Or T o n y's worthless brain?

  • AlmightyJB||

    They should be working on vaginas for our cyber women. You ass fuckers here are gonna have to wait in line.

  • $park¥||

    If someone is going to be making cyber-vaginas, I would like to suggest introducing flavoring mechanism. Start out with the standard Neopolitan flavors and go from there.

  • Enough About Palin||

    "Tissue Engineers Make Working Kidneys in the Lab - For Rats"

    What's with all the scientist love for rats? Why on earth are they always spending resources to provide breakthrough treatments for rats, when all of that effort could be going towards helping human beings.

  • Enough About Palin||

    I see FOE beat me to it. Again!

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    Always the bridesmaid.

  • Ron||

    What will be interesting is who wins out since there is a competing group that can make a kidney using a 3d printer which sounds a lot more economical than the method these guys are using.

  • WomSom||

    I really like the direction tat is going!



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