Israeli scientists engineer human tissues for transplants using patients' own cells

Source: Xinhua| 2018-11-13 03:15:27|Editor: Yurou
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JERUSALEM, Nov. 12 (Xinhua) -- Israeli researchers have developed a method to engineer human tissues for transplants from a tiny fat tissue of the patient himself, Tel Aviv University said on Monday.

The method makes it possible to produce any tissue in the body in a personalized manner for the patient without risking rejection by the immune system.

So far, synthetic or animal-derived substances that cause an immune response in the patient have been witnessed and therefore immunosuppressive drugs were required.

In tissue engineering, synthetic or biological polymers are used as extracellular material, which gives support to the cells and enables the creation of functional tissue.

So far, the extracellular material, which is now considered the best for transplants, is taken from pig tissue. In the process all the pig's cells are removed, and the remaining material grows human cells.

However, the pig's extracellular material also causes a severe immune response, which can cause rejection of the implant. The patient should also continue to take drugs, sometimes for life, that suppress his immune system.

To find a solution, the researchers removed, in a minimally invasive procedure, fatty tissue from a patient, separated the cells from the extracellular material, and created a customized gel for the patient.

Then, the fat cells were "reprogrammed" into pluripotent stem cells, which can be transformed into all cell types.

Thus, the researchers succeeded in producing tissue to repair spinal cord injuries and treat damaged heart muscle, neural tissue for Parkinson's patients, and fatty tissue for reconstructive surgery.

Because the tissue originates from the patient, they will not trigger an immune response. This technology has been successfully tested on animals and human immune cells.