Anthony Atala Pages 21 - 31 ( 11 )
Applications of regenerative medicine technology may offer new therapies for patients with injuries, end-stage organ failure, or other clinical problems. Currently, patients suffering from diseased and injured organs can be treated with transplanted organs. However, there is a shortage of donor organs that is worsening yearly as the population ages and new cases of organ failure increase. Scientists in the field of regenerative medicine and tissue engineering are now applying the principles of cell transplantation, material science, and bioengineering to construct biological substitutes that will restore and maintain normal function in diseased and injured tissues. The stem cell field is a rapidly advancing aspect of regenerative medicine as well, and new discoveries here create new options for this type of therapy. For example, therapeutic cloning, in which the nucleus from a donor cell is transferred into an enucleated oocyte in order to extract pluripotent embryonic stem cells from the resultant embryo, provides another source of cells for cell-based tissue engineering applications. While stem cells are still in the research phase, some therapies arising from tissue engineering endeavors have already entered the clinical setting, indicating that regenerative medicine holds promise for the future.
extracellular matrix, Collagen implants, Acellular tissue matrices, Polymer, Bladder, Cartilage
Director, Wake Forest Institute for Regenerative Medicine, The W. Boyce Professor and Chair, Urology, Wake Forest University School of Medicine, Medical Center Boulevard, Winston-Salem, NC 27157, USA.