Organ Donation & Transplant Matters Resources
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Organ Donation & Transplant Matters Resources
Combining reports, research findings and topic reviews
Curated by Deborah Verran
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Tissue-engineered trachea from a 3D-printed scaffold enhances whole-segment tracheal repair

Tissue-engineered trachea from a 3D-printed scaffold enhances whole-segment tracheal repair | Organ Donation & Transplant Matters Resources | Scoop.it
In this latest research into the bioengineering of a trachea (windpipe), scientists have developed a biodegradeable scaffold which is then populated with cells.

The new trachea was then surgically implanted into rabbits and the rabbits observed for complications.

This is a proof of concept study, i.e. it allows the researchers to ascertain that the bioengineered trachea can safely be transplanted. However as mentioned in this article, there have been limitations with the use of other types of the bioengineered trachea to date, including in humans. 

Hence more research is required to ascertain whether there is an artificial trachea which can be safely implanted into patients with an acceptable risk.
Deborah Verran's insight:
The latest research into developing a bioengineered trachea
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Air-Powered Robotic Sleeve Wraps Around Your Heart To Keep It Pumping

Air-Powered Robotic Sleeve Wraps Around Your Heart To Keep It Pumping | Organ Donation & Transplant Matters Resources | Scoop.it
Researchers from Harvard University and Boston Children's Hospital have developed an innovative robotic sleeve that fits around the heart. As outlined in this online report  the device (pictured) has been successfully trialed in large animals and hence satisfies proof of concept criteria. However in order for the device to meet stringent regulatory standards prior to then being marketed it must now undergo prospective trials in humans.

One advantage of this particular device is that it wraps around the heart and hence is not in contact with circulating blood which can lead to other problems such as excessive clotting.

The relevant research article which has now been published in Science Translational Medicine can be accessed via the following link-

Deborah Verran's insight:
This is an interesting new type of cardiac assist device which now needs to be trialed in humans
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Human-Animal Hybrid: Scientists Grow Human Cells Inside Pig Embryos

Human-Animal Hybrid: Scientists Grow Human Cells Inside Pig Embryos | Organ Donation & Transplant Matters Resources | Scoop.it

Scientists injected pig embryos with human stem cells to produce animal embryos that contain human cells. What are the dangers and potential benefits of this technology? This is explored in the full article which can be accessed via clicking on the banner headline.


This online article is the result of the publication of the findings of sophisticated laboratory research into the creation of embryos which contain cells from two different animals. In the research quoted above this involved placing genetically modified human stem cells into pig blastocysts (at the pre-embryo stage). Despite evidence of the human stem cells initially surviving there was limited evidence of them being present at the pig embryo stage as outlined in the full scientific report-


http://www.cell.com/cell/fulltext/S0092-8674(16)31752-4


Despite the headlines generated in some quarters by this particular research, this does not mean that the transplantation of organs from 'humanized pigs' is just around the corner as may have been implied.



Deborah Verran's insight:
This proof of concept study will now need to be followed by more sophisticated research in order to ascertain whether this will lead to so called humanized organs in pigs.
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JCI - Evidence of premature immune aging in patients thymectomized during early childhood

JCI - Evidence of premature immune aging in patients thymectomized during early childhood | Organ Donation & Transplant Matters Resources | Scoop.it

This research article presents data indicative that patients who have undergone thymectomy at a young age may have impaired T- cell function.

 

Further research will provide answers on whether this translates into a higher incidence of clinical infection with the passage of time 


Via Gilbert C FAURE
Deborah Verran's insight:

Interesting result adding another piece to the puzzle which is the complex immune system in humans

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