Kidney cells help avoid transplants

Kidney cells help avoid transplants

Such reprogramming could mean that in future, fewer kidney patients would require complicated, expensive procedures that affect their quality of life. There are around 88,000 patients waiting for a kidney transplant in the US, for as long as three to five years.

Sharon Ricardo from Monash University and her colleagues took cells from an individual’s kidney and coaxed them to become progenitor cells, allowing the immature cells to form any type in the kidney.

Specifically, they inserted several key reprogramming genes into the renal cells that made them capable of forming other cells, according to a Monash University statement.

In a second study, Miguel Esteban, from the Chinese Academy of Sciences, China and colleagues found that kidney cells collected from a patient’s urine can also be reprogrammed in this way.

Using cells from urine allows a technology easy to implement in a clinic setting. Even better, urine cells could be frozen and later thawed before they are manipulated.

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