Researchers at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston revealed that they have managed to grow a human-like ear from animal tissue, taking them another step closer towards developing a complete human ear from a patient's cells.
Writing in the report, published in the Journal of the Royal Society Interface, the researchers revealed that they made use of a flexible titanium wire frame work on which they grew the living tissue cells, collected from cows and sheep, and then implanted it into a rat whose immune system was suppressed in order to enable the ear to grow.
Advertisement"In a clinical model, what we would do is harvest a small sample of cartilage, that the patient has, and then expand that so we could go ahead and do the same process. This research is a significant step forward in preparing the tissue-engineered ear for human clinical trials", lead researcher Dr Thomas Cervantes said, adding that he hopes to conduct human clinical trials in the next five years.
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