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Care and feeding of a liver

November 5, 2010
Bioengineered livers might soon be within our grasp. Researchers at the Institute for Regenerative Medicine at Wake Forest University Baptist Medical Center (could that name be any longer?) have grown human liver cells into small, working livers. It's early yet, but the next step is animal studies to make sure these miniature livers continue to function like real livers. I already talked about a researcher who was engineering an artifical kidney he had hoped to par down to implantable size from the now room sized working artifical kidney. It's interesting to see the paths of research take both strictly biological and also technologically assembled forms. I think with diversity in development we are more likely to see huge leaps in science on this front and not be far from a Star Trek-esque world where many internal organs can be replaced with the proper machines.
 
And for those wondering, you can get your own plush organs (as seen in adorable photo) here at I Heart Guts.
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