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Scientists Hoping to Grow Human Organs in Animals


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A group of scientists believe they're only a year away from being able to grow human organs inside of animals. A group of scientists believe they're only a year away from being able to grow human organs inside of animals. Right now, the Japanese researchers are just waiting for the government go-ahead. A panel of appointed experts in the areas of law and science is in the process of establishing guidelines for embryonic research in the country. Japan is already known to have more support for procedures that are quite controversial elsewhere. The plan the organ growers are waiting to execute involves putting human stem cells into an animal embryo. The resulting "chimeric embryo" would then be placed in an animal's womb. As the host grows, so does the human organ. When the organ is mature and needed, the host would be slaughtered, the organ harvested, and the transplant performed. The researchers plan to start with a simpler organ like the pancreas and then work their way up to hearts and kidneys. The top candidate for host animal is a pig. The lead scientist explained that pigs are preferred as they have an established history of successful medical uses including pig to human organ transplants.



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