In 2016, researchers in the US successfully implanted lab-engineered bones into 14 adult Yucatan mini pigs. None of the pigs rejected the new organs after surgery. Quite the opposite. The blood vessels inside the lab-grown bones seamlessly integrated themselves into the pigs’ preexisting circulatory systems.
How was all of this possible?
To get the process started, scientists scanned the pigs’ jawbones and mapped their structures. They then created matching cell-free scaffolds out of cow bones. These structures were injected with the pigs’ stem cells and soaked in a nutrient-rich solution. The result was fully functional, living bone