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expert comments on the first transplant of a tissue-engineered airway, as published in The Lancet

The Lancet has announced the successful transplantation of the world’s first tissue-engineered airway, created using the patient’s own stem cells to ensure that there was no possibility of immune rejection.

Ben Sykes, UK National Stem Cell Network spokesperson, said:

“The UK National Stem Cell Network (UKNSCN) is delighted to see UK researchers participating in potentially ground-breaking surgical work involving the use of mesenchymal (adult) stem cells derived from patient bone marrow. It’s even more encouraging to see such results coming from multidisciplinary work involving tissue engineers and stem cell biologists, something which is core to the UKNSCN mission. UKNSCN congratulates the research team and looks forward to hearing news of the vitally important follow-up observations which will determine the long-term success of the procedure.

“The work presented in the Lancet is an excellent demonstration of the potential of adult stem cells as one of several possible avenues in regenerative medicine and shows that the funding which has been invested into, and continues to be invested into, bone marrow stem cell research over decades is worthwhile. However, until we have a better understanding of the full potential of adult stem cells, which may yet prove limited, the UK Government must continue to invest in all types of stem cell research.”

Click here to see details of the briefing.

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