Chinese researchers have made a phenomenal breakthrough in stem cell research.
Duanqing Pei and his team from Guangzhou Institutes of Biomedicine and Health have found a way to coerce stem cells collected from urine to become induced pluripotent stem cells that can be used to generate other types of cell. They have demonstrated this potential by making teeth, though they could also make cells for other major organs.
The team are quick to point out that this technology is still very experimental, with the teeth produced not yet as hard as the teeth that humans are born with and a success rate currently running at 30%.
Their research is published in the online open access journal Cell Regeneration.
The potential is incredible, particularly in terms of immune system responses. Just think, in future you might literally pee out the foundation for your new teeth!
It certainly lends a whole new meaning to the phrase “taking the piss”…