SAN DIEGO, April 13, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- The engineering of replacement tissue shows promise to dramatically impact the treatment of patients with end stage heart failure. While the field is still in early stages, researchers will discuss the potential for a revolutionary change in medicine at the International Society for Heart & Lung Transplantation Annual Meeting and Scientific Sessions this week.
"We have opened the door to generating new complex organs," said Doris A. Taylor, PhD, University of Minnesota.
Dr. Taylor will moderate Thursday's Mid-Day Symposium 3: Immunological Aspects of Engineered Heart Tissue and Cellular Replacement Therapies in Heart Failure.
According to Dr. Taylor, creating bioartificial organs requires cells, a framework for the cells and a way to feed these cells. Building any complex organ, a heart or lung for instance, requires a complex interplay between cells, their microenvironments and the vascular network, which ultimately impacts cell differentiation.
Beyond transplantation, tissue engineering holds potential for building pieces of organs and tissues for use in repair of these organs.
On Friday, Dr. Taylor will discuss her own research during the Mid-Day Symposium 5: Future Therapies for End-Stage Thoracic Organ Failure. Dr. Taylor's discussion: Is There a Future for Engineered Heart and Lung, will explore how matrix provides an architecturally correct 3-D microenvironment for developing cells and the biologic structural cues that drive cell behavior. She will discuss the impact of matrix on stem or progenitor cell alignment, differentiation, function and physiology, as well as its use as an in vitro test bed to evaluate stem cell repair.
"Engineering solutions to disease is no longer science fiction. Tissue engineering has the potential to revolutionize how humans think of health and disease," said Dr. Taylor.
Dr. Taylor noted that tr