In a TED video from earlier in the year, Nina Tandon and Sarindr Ick Bhumiratana of EpiBone talked about their incredible technique to use biomaterials and stem cells to generate customized bone material for implant. In Tandon’s words, “If you need a piece of human bone, you can use your own cells to grow your own.”
EpiBone’s technique takes an anatomically correct bone scaffold and implants it with multipotent stem cells derived from a fat sample taken from the patient. That scaffold, enriched with those autologous stem cells, is further ‘formed’ in a bioreactor, after which the “anatomically precise” bone is implanted into the patient.
There’s still a lot of work to be done before EpiBone is making bone grafts for in-human use, but even just the potential here is inspiring and goes to show the incredible things we can do with regenerative medicine techniques and some creativity.
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