A 10-year-old boy has undergone an operation to replace his windpipe using his own stem cells, which could herald a revolution in transplant surgery.
The boy was given a denuded donated windpipe which was coated just a few hours before the operation with his own stem cells, chemically “programmed” to turn into the appropriate tissues while inside his body.
Professor Martin Birchall, the head of translational regenerative medicine at University College London, said: "It is the first time a child has received stem cell organ treatment, and it’s the longest airway that has ever been replaced.
The procedure is experimental. This is only the second time the surgery has been done. But there seems to be quite a bit of excitement regarding the prospects of regenerative medicine.