A new technology for manmade body parts may save those in desperate need of an organ transplant.

Scientists at London Laboratory are developing a new technique for growing replacement organs, such as noses, ears, windpipes, and more.

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ website organdonor.gov website says about 112,000 American men, women, and children are in need of a life-saving transplant with an average of 18 people dying each day for lack of a suitable organ.

Professor Alex Seifalian of the University College of London, has developed a breakthrough technique for manufacturing synthetic replacement organs made of a special plastic that can potentially save lives.

The first and so far only transplant that has been made was a success. A man from Eritrea – who is now recovering well - had been diagnosed with inoperable throat cancer. He received a transplant of what Seifalian calls a “wholly tissue-engineered synthetic windpipe,” in other words, a synthetic trachea. He said he now had hope for the future.


The method involves making a glass mock-up of the diseased body part, coating it in a new type of polymer, a rubbery type substance designed in their lab, replacing the organ and letting the body do the rest.

The plastic synthetic body part has microscopic pores where stem cells from the patient can attach to and remodel themselves into a new body part.

The plastic works as a structure to help cells recreate needed organs within the body and because the cells are the patient’s own they are not rejected by the body’s immune system.


Professor Seifalian told CBS News, that the trachea might just be the beginning.

“The heart is possible,” said Seifalian. “But more complex organs like the lung and the brain are more complex to build.”

The lab is currently growing blood vessels to be used in heart bypass surgery.

As reported in CBS News, Dr. Seifalian’s lab is already getting body part orders from many countries around the world.

This new technique may just be the start of a life saving miracle, however it has not yet been approved in the U.S.