Medical Research Council - London Institute of Medical Sciences

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Lab Livers

Lab-grown liver tissue without use of animal-derived factors unsuitable for human transplant

03 August 2020

Lab Livers

With hundreds of people waiting for a liver transplant in the UK, researchers are working towards developing an alternative to donor transplants — lab-grown liver tissues or organoids. There's already been success growing liver organoids in specially designed environments called matrices. However, these matrices are made using animal components, making them unsuitable for use in human transplants. Researchers now show how a non-animal matrix made using a specific blend of chemicals is just as successful in growing liver organoids, as revealed by fluorescent microscopy (pictured). The liver markers present in organoids grown using the non-animal matrix (bottom) were comparable to those grown using the animal matrix (top). This brings us a step closer to growing liver tissues for transplantations.

Written by Lux Fatimathas

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