January 16, 2014
Scientists Manage to Grow a Kidney
According to research done by the CDC, around 2% of adults experience kidney disease which results in thousands upon thousands of deaths each year in the United States. What is even more heart wrenching is that only 25% of those who are on the wait list for a donor kidney will ever receive one. Incredibly work is being done though by Melissa Little from the University of Queensland's Institute for Molecular Bioscience. In a paper that was published in Nature Cell Biology, Melissa announced that researchers were able to grow a rudimentary kidney from human stem cells. Currently the kidney is only the size of what you would find in a five week old human embryo although it is a large step forward for bioscience. Earlier in the year, and American team had created a rat kidney from stem cells but the organ failed to perform after surgery. Kidney failure and renal disease are incredibly hard to treat with the likelihood that the patient will not survive without a transplant. Melissa Little's work might very possibly open the door to not only laboratory grown kidneys but other organs as well. It would be a final option for someone who has none other available to them. Years of research and testing are needed but the potential of the breakthrough still remains. It would seem that there is no limit to human ingenuity and the strides obtained in just medicine is a testament to just how much we can achieve.