Researchers Utilize Stem Cells to Grow Livers and Eye Balls

Stem cell biologist Takanori Takebe of Yokohama City University in Japan successfully grew a small rudimentary liver while at the RIKEN Center for Developmental Biology in Kobe, researcher Yoshiki Sasai and his colleagues directed “retinal precursor cells” to develop into an the optic cup of the eye.  Takebe said “a more developed version of the liver could eventually be used for long-term organ replacement, as well as serving as a short-term graft for patients whose damaged native livers are expected to recover.” Both the liver research and the optical tissue regeneration are examples of how advances in directing cells to differentiate will accelerate the application of stem cell treatments.

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