Scientists grow blood vessels from stem cells

Using adult stem cells extracted from bone marrow, scientists at the University of Buffalo have grown new blood vessels and successfully tested them in sheep. In addition to contracting and dilating, the vessels produce collagen and elastin, which are essential for proper functioning. And the research team is now focused on making the vessels stronger and better, for use in humans. Eventually, they say, the approach could provide individual blood vessels that could be used in heart bypass surgery, replacing the sections of veins now commonly used to bypass an obstruction.

"Our results show that bone marrow is an excellent source of adult stem cells containing smooth muscle and endothelial cells, and that these stem cells can be used in regenerative medicine for cardiovascular applications," said Dr. Stelios Andreadis. "These are the first tissue-engineered vessels to demonstrate the ability to make elastin in vivo (in live animals or patients)."

- see this release
- read the article from The Daily Mail

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