WPI research team shows spinach leaves stripped of plant cells can become a vascular network to deliver blood, oxygen and nutrients to grow human tissues like cardiac muscle to treat heart attack patients. This green solution may solve the major problem now limiting the regeneration of large section of human tissues, bone, even whole organs to treat disease or traumatic injuries.
“The main limiting factor for tissue engineering … is the lack of a vascular network,” says study co-author Joshua Gershlak, a graduate student at Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) in Massachusetts, in a video describing the study. “Without that vascular network, you get a lot of tissue death.”
Spinach Leaf Transformed Into Beating Human Heart Tissue
Using the plant like scaffolding, scientists built a mini version of a working heart, which may one day aid in tissue regeneration.