Researchers at Mass General Hospital have built a rat forelimb with functional muscular and
vascular tissue using progenitor stem cells. The approach may be useful in developing
replacement limbs for transplantation in primates. The team, led by Dr. Harald Ott, injected
muscle progenitor cells into a cell-free matrix that preserved nerves and primary vasculature;
two weeks later, analysis confirmed the presence of blood vessel walls within vascular cells and
aligned muscle cells within the muscle matrix.
These developments hold great promise for the 1.5 million Americans living without a limb, for
whom prosthetics offer limited functionality. Donor transplants offer greater dexterity but entail
lifelong immunosuppressive therapy, which would be avoided if limbs were grown from the
progenitor cells of their eventual recipient. In addition, this work may provide a foundation for
future research in organ regeneration and transplantation.
Advances in stem cell based regenerative treatments are creating more effective treatment
options for patients suffering from a wide variety of disease, trauma and injury. To learn more
about stem cells, and how families can bank their own valuable stem cells by recovering the very
powerful dental pulp stem cells during routine dental procedures; such as wisdom teeth
extractions or the during the loss of baby teeth, visit StemSave or call 877-783-6728 (877-
To view the full article, click here.
The Future of Regenerative Medicine is Now™.