Russian scientists study producing artificial hearts in 'cobweb'

A group of Russian researchers at the Moscow Institute for Physics and Technology are studying the use of spidroin, a protein in the spider's web, to shape and grow human hearts outside the body. The goal would be to produce transplant hearts with lower risk of rejection. In addition, the waiting time in the transplantation queue could shorten considerably.

The group has already been able to experiment by replicating cardiac muscle tissue cells along with a synthetic base of this protein. It now remains to develop a method for forming a fully functional heart from the patient's own cells to prevent rejection.

This protein is being modified and synthesized for many applications today, including for cultivating human tendons for transplantation. Therefore, its use in the creation of other organs outside the human body for transplantation is being considered. The protein is non-toxic and still offers greater strength and elasticity.

So far, there are no very precise expectations as to when researchers expect to have a fully grown spidroin-based heart. The full scientific article on the subject can be accessed here.

Via TecMundo