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Got a lung organ for Scotland?

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Got a lung organ for Scotland?

Postby tsukoui » Mon Feb 15, 2016 3:44 pm

tsukoui
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Re: Got a lung organ for Scotland?

Postby tsukoui » Wed Feb 17, 2016 10:57 pm

Myrddin Wyllt (Welsh: [ˈmərðɪn ˈwɨɬt]—"Myrddin the Wild") is a figure in medieval Welsh legend. A prophet and a madman, he was introduced into Arthurian legend by Geoffrey of Monmouth as Merlin the wizard, associated with the town of Carmarthen in South Wales. In Middle Welsh poetry he is accounted a chief bard, the speaker of several poems in The Black Book of Carmarthen and The Red Book of Hergest. He is called Wyllt—"the Wild"—by Elis Gruffydd,[1] and elsewhere Myrddin Emrys ("Ambrosius"), Merlinus Caledonensis ("of Caledonia") or Merlin Sylvestris ("of the woods").[2]

Although his legend centres on a known Celtic theme, Myrddin's legend is rooted in history, for he is said to have gone mad after the Battle of Arfderydd at Arthuret at which Rhydderch Hael of Strathclyde defeated Gwenddoleu. According to the Annales Cambriae this took place in AD 573.[2] Myrddin fled into the forest, lived with the animals and received the gift of prophecy.[3]

Myrddin Wyllt's legend closely resembles that of a north-British figure called Lailoken, which appears in Jocelyn of Furness' 12th century Life of Kentigern, an important founder of the post-Roman church in Strathclyde, said to have died in 612CE. Lailoken is identified with Merlin in the late 15th century Lailoken and Kentigern, but the alternative name may already be present in the 12th century dialogue of Myrddin with his twin sister Gwendydd (or Gwenddydd or Languoreth), for she addresses him several times as Llallwg, for which the diminutive would be Llallwgan.[4] Scholars differ as to the independence or identity of Lailoken and Myrddin, though there is more agreement as to Myrddin's original independence from later Welsh legends.

Myrddin's grave is reputed to lie near the River Tweed in the village of Drumelzier near Peebles, although nothing remains above ground level at the site.
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Re: Got a lung organ for Scotland?

Postby tsukoui » Fri Feb 19, 2016 4:54 pm

Today I'll point out a good example of a new and improved methodology in tissue engineering: model arteries created in hours rather than the previous standard of weeks. There is a lot going in in this field, and the ability to create tissues from the starting point of cells and raw biomaterials is improving in leaps and bounds from year to year. From the point of view of speeding up research, many of the most import advances in the life sciences relate to logistics, and thus go largely unheralded because they have no direct connection to clinical translation of research into therapies. Yet any new technique that dramatically reduces time or cost in materials means that all of the research groups using it can get more done at a given level of funding. Moreover, reductions in cost usually also mean that researchers who were previously stuck on the sidelines can now get involved, adding their efforts to moving the state of the art that much faster. At the large scale, and over the long term, science is built on a foundation of ever-better infrastructure, not leaps of ideation.

At the present time a lot of the most important advances in tissue engineering are logistical, somewhat distant from clinical applications. The first engineered tissues very similar to those in living individuals are not destined for therapies, but rather to be used to speed up testing and research. Living tissue sections can replace a lot of the use of animal models, and at a much lower cost. At some stages small amounts of engineered human tissue can be far better tools for research than animal models, especially where tissue can be produced from the cells of patients with specific diseases or genetic conditions.

Another reason for this focus on small tissue sections for research is that generating blood vessel networks sufficient to support larger solid tissue masses, such as whole organs, is not yet a robustly solved problem. Researchers are definitely making progress, especially with the use of bioprinters capable of generating scaffolds incorporating small-scale structures, but the practical upper size limit on engineered tissue is still too small to be building organs in their entirety. This is one of the reasons why a great deal of effort is going into decellulization as a transitional technology, the use of donor organs cleared of cells to create a scaffold with blood vessels already in place that can be repopulated with a recipient's cells.

Looking at the results linked below, I think you'll agree that this is an impressive piece of work, though still removed a way from the desired end goals of firstly producing patient-matched replacement blood vessels to order for transplantation, and secondly finding a way to create blood vessel networks to order inside engineered tissue as it grows.
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