Jaw bone created from stem cells
New bone created in the lab
The new bone was created from bone marrow stem cells
Scientists have created part of the jaw joint in the lab using human adult stem cells.
They say it is the first time a complex, anatomically-sized bone has been accurately created in this way.
It is hoped the technique could be used not only to treat disorders of the specific joint, but more widely to correct problems with other bones too.
The Columbia University study appears in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.
The bone which has been created in the lab is known as the temporomandibular joint (TMJ).
The availability of personalized bone grafts engineered from the patient’s own stem cells would revolutionise the way we currently treat these defects
Problems with the joint can be the result of birth defects, arthritis or injury.
Although they are widespread, treatment can be difficult.
The joint has a complex structure which makes it difficult to repair by using grafts from bones elsewhere in the body.
The latest study used human stem cells taken from bone marrow.
These were seeded into a tissue scaffold, formed into the precise shape of the human jaw bone by using digital images from a patient.
The cells were then cultured using a specially-designed bioreactor which was able to infuse the growing tissue with exactly the level of nutrients found during natural bone development…