Scientists in the US, working to recreate the entire human gastrointestinal tract by biomechanical methods in the laboratory, have announced that they have succeeded in developing human esophagus tissue through the cultivation of pluripotent stem cells.
The creation of a laboratory esophagus will in the future provide new diagnostic and therapeutic options for physicians for patients suffering from esophageal disorders, making progress in the field of personalized medicine, thus adjusting the treatment to the needs of each patient.
This is the first time that scientists have been able to grow and develop human esophagus tissue exclusively from pluripotent stem cells, which have already been used to develop other laboratory instruments (bowel, stomach, liver).
The researchers, headed by Jim Welles of the Cincinnati Children’s Hospital’s Medical Center, made the relevant publication in the journal Cell Biology, Cell Stem Cell.
The esophagus may develop birth defects (such as atresia that causes a stenosis or deformation due to genetic mutations) or later disruptions in the life of the patient, such as esophageal cancer, gastroesophageal reflux disease, and the like. For all these ailments, better treatments are sought from today.
For the time being, only one “organo” esophagus has been developed. It will take quite a while to create a complete esophagus in the laboratory.