Each year, 17,000 people receive a kidney transplant, but it's the number of people that don't receive one that is so astounding.
THAT number is about 17,000 people times FIVE, which is why news that scientists have made functioning rat kidneys at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston is SO amazing!!!!
When the kidneys were transplanted into rats - they effectively produced urine for the rodents!
Normally rat urine isn't very exciting, but this could be a first step towards creating replacement organs for folks who suffer from kidney diseases.
Talk about a step in the right direction!
Here's what one doctor said about the research:
“The real value of this study is that it’s the kidney and it’s a proof of concept, and the clinical need is so great.”
But the leap from a rat kidney to a human kidney seems like a big one.
And one doctor had a theory on how to conquer that formidable problem.
Here's what the doctor said:
“You’d take a kidney matrix off the shelf. Then in an ideal world, you’d take cells from that patient and create a kidney on demand.”
Wow, that would be amazing!
At the rate our technology is advancing - that might not be such an unreasonable scenario in the near future.
[Image via Wikimedia Commons.]
Tags: dialysis, health, kidney, lab, made, patients, rat, rat made kidney, rats, science