December 24, 2008

Scientists create artificial bone marrow

A University of Michigan lab has created artificial bone marrow that can continuously make red and white blood cells in a test tube.

Researchers said the substance could someday provide a continuous supply of blood for transfusions, the university said Tuesday in a news release.

The findings are published online in the journal Biomaterials.

Lead author Nicholas Kotov said the artificial bone marrow grows on a 3-D scaffold that mimics the tissues supporting bone marrow in the body. It is designed to function in a test tube. He said the bone marrow can replicate blood stem cells and produce B cells, allowing researchers to test how a new drug at certain potencies would affect bone marrow function.