Research ArticleTissue Engineering

In situ expansion of engineered human liver tissue in a mouse model of chronic liver disease

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Science Translational Medicine  19 Jul 2017:
Vol. 9, Issue 399, eaah5505
DOI: 10.1126/scitranslmed.aah5505

Tissue seeds blossom after transplant

There is an enormous clinical need for liver transplant tissue. Bioengineered livers might ultimately be used as a bridge to or alternative for whole organ transplantation. In new work, Stevens et al. fabricated human artificial liver “seeds” in biomaterials that were able to grow and expand after implantation into mice in response to liver injury. After growth, the human artificial liver seeds were able to carry out normal liver functions such as production of human proteins like transferrin and albumin. This study suggests that implanted engineered tissue seeds should be able to expand in response to the body’s own repair signals.