Organ transplantation represents one of the major milestones of modern medicine and surgical practice in terms of life-years prolonged and quality of life offered for chronic patients. Each year over 100,000 donor organ transplants are performed worldwide. In spite of the rapid advancement and expansion of this niche, it has become a victim of its own success as the donor supply is far oustripped by the demand for replacement organs. Furthermore, current methods only allow for successful transplantation in the setting of life-long, aggressive immunosuppression protocols which enhances the incidence of secondary neoplasm and other associated sequelae. Against this background, recent advances in the fields of regenerative medicine, tissue engineering, and cellular biology have coalesced into a promising new avenue of investigation involving the fabrication of de novo, transplantable organs using autologous cells. Donor organs are stripped of their native cellular material leaving only acellular, extracellular matrix constructs behind. These constructs can then be recellularized with a patient's own cells in order to form transplantable organs that do not require immunosuppression. Furthermore, in theory, these methods could provide a potentially inexhaustible source of organs to meet the growing need for viable transplants. In this review, we describe these methods as well as contemporary successes for various organ systems.
|Number of pages||13|
|Publication status||Published - Feb 1 2015|
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