Book: 100+  |  September 2, 2011

The Wall Street Journal recently reviewed Sonia Arrison’s 100 Plus, which examines how modern medicine will “radically increase┬ánot just our life spans but also, and more importantly, our health spans.”

Sounds like a fascinating read; check out what the WSJ said regarding advances in tissue engineering specifically:

“Consider tissue engineering, in which human organs, grown from scratch or rebuilt in a laboratory, are transplanted into sick humans. It sounds like science fiction, but Ms. Arrison describes the experience of Claudia Castillo, a 30-year-old mother of two children whose windpipe was badly damaged from tuberculosis where it joined her left lung. She had difficulty breathing, and her quality of life was deteriorating rapidly.

Conventional treatment would have required a risky operation to remove Ms. Castillo’s lung. But tissue engineers were able to take a donated trachea and remove the donor’s tissue from the windpipe’s ‘extracellular matrix,’ a kind of biological scaffold. Using stem cells from Ms. Castillo, the scientists grew tissue on top of the windpipe structure, generating a new trachea. It was then transplanted into Ms. Castillo. Since the trachea was engineered with her own tissue, her body did not reject it. With the diseased trachea removed, she was cured of a potentially fatal infection.”

Read the full article here.

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