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Basic science breathes life into patient

19 November 2008

BBSRC welcomes today’s news reports that surgeons have successfully used a patient’s adult stem cells to tissue-engineer and transplant a windpipe, and so restore normal breathing and save the patient’s life.

Professor Douglas Kell, BBSRC Chief Executive said, "We are delighted by this exciting application of BBSRC funded science. It’s rewarding to see how basic research on stem cell biology is contributing to the real treatment of patients – a demonstration of the impact that basic research can have on peoples’ lives."

In a collaboration stretching across Europe, a Bristol-based scientist’s technique was used to grow the patient’s own adult stem cells and mature them into cartilage cells with which they covered an inert donor scaffold.

Professor Antony Hollander’s technique was developed with funding from the Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC).

 

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