Scientists have grown real, living human bones in the lab for the first time, completely from scratch, and ready to be inserted inside human flesh. Or given to my dog, as a delicious treat.
Dr. Gordana Vunjak-Novakovic - Columbia University professor of biomedical engineering - achieved the feat for the first time using stem cells and moulds generated from three-dimensional scans. They are still testing them with animals, but theoretically this means that doctors would be able to replace any bone - no matter how small and intricate - within a decade.
The implications are huge, especially as the population keeps getting older across the globe. Built-to-order bones are organisms that will extend human lives even further and, more importantly, reduce diseases dramatically. [New York Times]