World Scientists grow human heart tissue

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A team from the University of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, used induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cells generated from human skin cells to create precursor heart cells called MCPs.

Researchers wrote in the journal Nature Communications on Tuesday that the heart cells were attached to a mouse heart "scaffold", from which they grew and developed into heart muscle.

A University of Pittsburgh statement said that after 20 days of blood supply, the reconstructed mouse organ "began contracting again at the rate of 40 to 50 beats per minute."

A senior researcher, Lei Yang, said it was still far from making a whole human heart.

"We hope our study would be used in the future to replace a piece of tissue damaged by a heart attack, or perhaps an entire organ, in patients with heart disease." He said.
 
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