(Worthy Watch) – The ghostly form floating in a large jar had been the robust reddish-brown of a healthy organ just hours before. Now it’s semitranslucent, white tubes like branches on a tree showing through.
This is a pig liver that’s gradually being transformed to look and act like a human one, part of scientists’ long quest to ease the nation’s transplant shortage by bioengineering replacement organs.
The first step for workers in this suburban Minneapolis lab is to shampoo away the pig cells that made the organ do its work, its color gradually fading as the cells dissolve and are flushed out. What’s left is a rubbery scaffolding, a honeycomb structure of the liver, its blood vessels now empty. [ Source: AP (Read More…) ]