A team at Children's Hospital and Harvard Medical School has grown replacement urinary bladders and transplanted them successfully into patients, marking the first time that doctors have been able to replace a failing human organs with laboratory-grown replacements. Observers say the success of the project suggests that it may soon be possible to grow other replacement organs. The charmingly named "neo-bladders" were grown from patients' own cells, making rejection less of an issue. The seven young patients who took part in the experiment have gone an average of four years without complications. The research is detailed in this week's issue of The Lancet. The joint Harvard-Wake Forest project has also spawned Tengion--a spin-off which organizers hope can capitalize on the technology.
- read this Washington Post article