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3D Human Cells Grown

ScuttleMonkey posted more than 8 years ago | from the with-the-glasses-to-prove-it dept.

138

SR_melb writes writes to tell us that Melbourn researchers have, for the first time, managed to grow three dimensional human cells. This bypasses previous achievements of only being able to create two-dimensional constructions like skin. From the article: "Professor Wayne Morrison, from Melbourne's Bernard O'Brien Institute of Microsurgery has led the breakthrough. He says it's a world first and predicts the discovery will ultimately lead to the creation of human organs, including parts of the heart, by using the patients' own stem cells. Such a scenario, says Professor Morrison, would reduce the problem of immune rejection which is often associated with organ transplants."

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As overheard in the lab. (5, Funny)

grub (11606) | more than 8 years ago | (#15489033)



Intern: Professor Morrison, we've had over 800,000 similar requests for a replacement penis and hand!
Morrison: Ahhh, yes. News of our discovery must have made it to Slashdot!

Re:As overheard in the lab. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15489850)

I would certainly give this a +5, come on, the guy had the penis AND hand. :)

Mmmmmmm red and blue cells..... (1)

Iguru42 (530641) | more than 8 years ago | (#15489037)

Now if they could only solve the pesky problem of the cells going flat and generally just looking like crap after they take off their glasses, they'd really have something.

3D cells? (5, Funny)

bohemian72 (898284) | more than 8 years ago | (#15489039)

Funny. I didn't realize there were any 2D human cells. Maybe that's how Flat Stanley was able to slide under the door.

Re:3D cells? (1)

I Like Pudding (323363) | more than 8 years ago | (#15489291)

I don't think he'd be sliding under much of anything without a time dimension

Re:3D cells? (1)

Solder Fumes (797270) | more than 8 years ago | (#15489414)

Google is always an excellent safeguard against looking like an idiot.

Re:3D cells? (1)

Emetophobe (878584) | more than 8 years ago | (#15489624)

Funny. I didn't realize there were any 2D human cells. Maybe that's how Flat Stanley was able to slide under the door.
Lol. I thought all cells have a thickness, it's just microscopic. I've seen my own red blood cells under a microscope before and they look alot like little red donuts (Red Blood Cells [wikipedia.org] .

Re:3D cells? (0, Offtopic)

It'sYerMam (762418) | more than 8 years ago | (#15489674)

Like, OMG!! You know slashdot's going down the pan when its members say 'lol.' And contract 'a lot.'

Re:3D cells? (0, Offtopic)

Tibor the Hun (143056) | more than 8 years ago | (#15490054)

bump

Goodness (1)

electrosoccertux (874415) | more than 8 years ago | (#15489049)

And all this time I thought our cells where only 2D.

Re:Goodness (1)

dick pubes (963843) | more than 8 years ago | (#15489173)

I can tell how much money your parents made from reading that comment.

Re:Goodness (1)

ackthpt (218170) | more than 8 years ago | (#15489328)

And all this time I thought our cells where only 2D.

Skin is flat tissue, but has multiple layers. I suppose what they grow in labs is only the epidermis.

But what about the bladders that they've been growing in labs? Isn't that organ a combination of tissue types and more than simply 2D, i.e. muscle and the lining? See some info about it here [voanews.com] . These replacement bladders are in people right now.

Re:Goodness (1)

nizo (81281) | more than 8 years ago | (#15489453)

Only if you live in Flatland [wikipedia.org] .

just an observation (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15489061)

slashdot's new layout makes me want to commit suicide

Re:just an observation (1)

tbmcmullen (940544) | more than 8 years ago | (#15489097)

Blast it's non-harsh colors and easy-on-the-eyes rounded corners. How could they do such a thing?!

Sold! (5, Funny)

Itninja (937614) | more than 8 years ago | (#15489064)

FTA: Now, currently we have been able to make breast tissue...

Great, I'll take two please.

Re:Sold! (1)

Abreu (173023) | more than 8 years ago | (#15489133)

You want breast implants?

Re:Sold! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15489319)

Most Slashdotters have never seen breasts in 3D!

Re:Sold! (1)

dr_dank (472072) | more than 8 years ago | (#15489401)

Most Slashdotters have never seen breasts in 3D!

Wrong. Most of us have played Tomb Raider.

Re:Sold! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15489574)

I meant true (real-life) 3D, thanks for proving the point :)

Re:Sold! (0, Offtopic)

gEvil (beta) (945888) | more than 8 years ago | (#15489515)

Agreed. Nothing like a coupla breast tissues for when you've got the sniffles...

*insert joke about snorting coke of a hooker's breasts*

Breasts not 2D, but... (1)

fahrbot-bot (874524) | more than 8 years ago | (#15489697)

FTA: Now, currently we have been able to make breast tissue...

There are, of course, not 2d, but Double-D.

Re:Sold! (1)

suv4x4 (956391) | more than 8 years ago | (#15490158)

FTA: Now, currently we have been able to make breast tissue...

Sure, of course, we could use it to cure paralized patients and cancer, but boob jobs and growing longer eye-lids would do.

The catch... (4, Funny)

GillBates0 (664202) | more than 8 years ago | (#15489068)

The only catch is that you have to wear wacky-looking glasses to see them in 3D.

2D Cells (1)

Umbral Blot (737704) | more than 8 years ago | (#15489072)

I think 2D cells yould have been much more interesting, as it would imply that cells could operate with only one atom's worth of height. Unfortunately the submitter meanst 2D arragements of cells, which is much less cool. For example read: The Planiverse.

Re:2D Cells (1)

geoffspear (692508) | more than 8 years ago | (#15489113)

Atoms are not two dimensional.

Re:2D Cells (1)

Umbral Blot (737704) | more than 8 years ago | (#15489155)

Obviously not (duh), but a one atome layer is effectively two dimensional, since no 3D structures/molecules could be formed.

Re:2D Cells (1)

legallyillegal (889865) | more than 8 years ago | (#15489428)

pay attention in science class much?
an atom consists of 3 parts, forming a 3D object

Re:2D Cells (1)

fubar1971 (641721) | more than 8 years ago | (#15489660)

3D - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/3_dimensional [wikipedia.org]
I believe atoms have all 3 dimensions?

Re:2D Cells (1)

Umbral Blot (737704) | more than 8 years ago | (#15489934)

Yes, but you couldn't form 3D structures out of a 2D field of atoms, in the sense that the STRUCTURAL ELEMENTS couldn't make use of the third dimension.

Re:2D Cells (1)

Tibor the Hun (143056) | more than 8 years ago | (#15490089)

dude, this is slashdot.
our dimensions are x y and z. and not "effective" inches.
either you have a z or you don't.

Re:2D Cells (1)

StarkRG (888216) | more than 8 years ago | (#15489722)

Exactly, if they were truly 2D then no matter how many you stacked on top of each other they wouldn't gain any width. If you managed to make a 2D animal (and figured out a way for it to ingest sustinance since having a tube all the way through would mean it'd be two entities (yeah, I've read flatland)) you could fold it up and store an infinate number in an envelope... If it were inteligent you could store an entire army inside an envilope and mail it to the country you're trying to invade...

title a little misleading (5, Informative)

circletimessquare (444983) | more than 8 years ago | (#15489081)

what the editor/ writer meant was "Human Cells Grown in a 3D Matrix"

that would have conveyed the substance of the story better, without idiots being confused and dorks laughing at the idiocy of the title, of which there is certainly to be a deluge of such comments

the title "4D Human Cells Grown" or "2D Human Cells Grown"... now that would have been interesting, as the laws of physics as we know them would have been breached, nevermind the laws of biology ;-)

Re:title a little misleading (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15489134)

'"4D Human Cells Grown" ....as the laws of physics as we know them would have been breached'

I hereby deem your cells are not allowed to change over time.

Re:title a little misleading (1)

Evanisincontrol (830057) | more than 8 years ago | (#15489202)

Change over time? Forget change... there wouldn't be time at all. At least you know you'd never die.

I just can't wait until mixes this up with String theory. "11-dimensional cells grown!"

Which brings us to... (1)

Belial6 (794905) | more than 8 years ago | (#15489474)

"At least you know you'd never die."

Given that the Constitution specifically states that Copyright is for a limited time, we are quickly approaching the 70 years after death as being unlimited.

Insensitive clod!!! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15489147)

....without idiots being confused and dorks laughing at the idiocy of the title,..... the title "4D Human Cells Grown"...now that would have been interesting, as the laws of physics as we know them would have been breached, nevermind the laws of biology ;-)

I live in multiple time dimensions you insensitive clod!

Re:title a little misleading (2, Funny)

geoffspear (692508) | more than 8 years ago | (#15489174)

Well, they also claimed that these researchers grew 3D human cells for the first time, which is really incredibly stupid. I've been growing 3D human cells for over 30 years.

Re:title a little misleading (2, Insightful)

Whiney Mac Fanboy (963289) | more than 8 years ago | (#15489188)

I've been growing 3D human cells for over 30 years.

If you've been growing them for over 30 years - they're 4D ;-)

s/30/39/g (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15489363)

WMF, you fucking idiot.

Re:s/30/39/g (1)

Jherek Carnelian (831679) | more than 8 years ago | (#15490026)

Time - not pun on 40. Geeze.

Re:utilization of a growth matrix (1)

callistra.moonshadow (956717) | more than 8 years ago | (#15489206)

One thing that researchers have managed is to grow bladders using a cellular matrix or structure. I've read that they have successfully used such a technique to grow bladders for people that have lost theirs to diseases such as cancer. Now having the ability to grow fully functional organs without the need for a matrix of some type is outstanding for the future of organ replacement.

Well... (2, Funny)

Zenikase (622230) | more than 8 years ago | (#15489099)

I, for one, welcome our new 3D unicellular overlords.

You mean human cells are not 2D? (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15489108)

When I looked at the diagrams in my biology textbook, they always seemed to be 2D.

Gasp! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15489125)

Wait, you mean they made a breakthrough using ADULT stem cells? They can't do that! Weren't we told that only embryonic stem cells were the answer to every disease known to mankind? What kind of frauds are these guys?

Re:Gasp! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15489314)

No! The only answer is to cut funding to embryonic stem cell research! God will cure all the diseases! Right?

It's been done. (1)

Some Woman (250267) | more than 8 years ago | (#15489168)

How is that different from the extracellular matrices used for cell growth as described in this [prnewswire.com] article?

Re:It's been done. (1)

Pavan_Gupta (624567) | more than 8 years ago | (#15489419)

It's really not different. Tissue Engineering, as far as I know, has long since been able to do this. It's just the concept of using an artificial scaffold of some sort (or a patented box, as described in this article) to support the artificial recreation of some sort of multilayered tissue. In this case, it happened to be Heart Tissue, but in most of the cases that I've read about and studied -- it's tended to be something like skin grafts, artificial tendons, etc.

This is hardly breaking news, if any news at all. Frankly, the article is written quite ambiguously -- no one can really clarify what this patented box really does and honestly, it seems like it's a pretty lame breakthrough in general. If a breakthrough at all. Check pubmed for this article: " Cell transplantation for heart failure, and tissue engineering of cardiovascular structures."

But then again, that's why Slashdot is a place to begin learning.. half the time I don't know if some "breakthrough" in x field is really a breakthrough until I find the mad scientist who clarifies. Anyway, Tissue Engineering is interesting regardless. Check it out [wikipedia.org] .

slashdot and learning .. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15489601)

If you begin learning on Slashdot now, you'll be left the empty carcasse of a child clearly left behind later.

a good first start... (1)

timster (32400) | more than 8 years ago | (#15489207)

Now all they need to do is figure out how to correct the DNA sequence that caused me to need a transplant in the first place and we'll be set. Another copy of the first two organs wouldn't do me a whole lot of good...

Re-rolling for a 20... (1)

HalfOfOne (738150) | more than 8 years ago | (#15489296)

I know you meant your comment sarcastically, but it begs an interesting question. The body would regrow these organs based on a DNA map that probably wasn't explicit in every detail, only the important structural ones. It's likely that variations could happen each time the organ was grown, even on the same subject.

I'm imagining a Slashdot geek removing a certain "organ" and depleting their reserve of stem cells trying to grow a bigger and better one...re-rolling for a 20 style.

Re:a good first start... (1)

WillAffleckUW (858324) | more than 8 years ago | (#15490030)

Another copy of the first two organs wouldn't do me a whole lot of good...

Well, let's examine that.

So, if you're 82 and your heart is failing - don't you want a new heart (assuming we can rebuild the telomeres and it's not like Dolly the Sheep who is as old as her "parent")? How about if your eye was damaged - we can get you an undamaged eye.

Now, admittedly, if you have a genetic disease - or even something like Alzheimers or Parkinsons (the latter is your energy cells - mitochondria - starting to fail) - this probably wouldn't help.

Not really the first.... (4, Informative)

btpier (587890) | more than 8 years ago | (#15489237)

This article http://www.startribune.com/535/story/45512.html [startribune.com] from a year ago would make me believe the researchers in Australia were not the first to accomplish this. Either that or they've taken a long time to tell anyone about it. The Star Tribune article is actually more interesting in that it gives more specifics on how the cells were actually grown.

Re:Not really the first.... (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15489728)

The article doesn't really say what it's the first to do. Cells have been grown in matrices for a long time. Look at Dermagraft(tm), or the work by Anthony Atala http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/entrez/query.fcgi?cmd= Retrieve&db=pubmed&dopt=Abstract&list_uids=1663187 9&query_hl=2&itool=pubmed_docsum [nih.gov] , or Linda Griffith http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/entrez/query.fcgi?cmd= Retrieve&db=pubmed&dopt=Abstract&list_uids=1649602 3&query_hl=3&itool=pubmed_docsum [nih.gov] , or anyone else who has been doing this same exact thing for years.

thats wierd (4, Funny)

dilvish_the_damned (167205) | more than 8 years ago | (#15489279)

Melbourn researchers have, for the first time, managed to grow three dimensional human cells.

I've been doing that for years.

Re:thats wierd (1)

Whiney Mac Fanboy (963289) | more than 8 years ago | (#15489444)

Melbourn researchers have, for the first time, managed to grow three dimensional human cells.

Any chance the editors could RTFA and add the "e" to the end of Melbourne?

again and again (2, Insightful)

mapkinase (958129) | more than 8 years ago | (#15489300)

Article does not have any indication to a peer-reviewed publications. My attempts to Pubmed it did not succeed.

No comments until the reference will pop up.

Stem Cells Huh? (1)

Spritzer (950539) | more than 8 years ago | (#15489301)

"Now Mr. Spritzer, we're only going to extract these cells for use in growing you a new heart. None of the material will be sent to the labs at Harvard [slashdot.org] . We swear."

Re:Stem Cells Huh? (1)

Nesetril (969734) | more than 8 years ago | (#15489399)

hey, there is nothing wrong with creating an army of cloned assassins like Agent 47.

Rejection in classic transplants only possible? (1)

w33t (978574) | more than 8 years ago | (#15489306)

FTA:"...reduce the problem of immune rejection which is often associated with organ transplants."

I had always assumed that immune rejection ALWAYS happened with organ transplants. Are there cases where a transplant has occured without rejection?

Re:Rejection in classic transplants only possible? (1)

Nesetril (969734) | more than 8 years ago | (#15489380)

they suppress the immune system big time before any transplants. and of course there is a reasonable chance of success, or you wouldn't see so many "i'm an organ donor" bumper stickers, lol.

Re:Rejection in classic transplants only possible? (1)

SydShamino (547793) | more than 8 years ago | (#15489459)

Are there cases where a transplant has occured without rejection?

In cases where the source material is already from the recipient? Ribs reused as jaw bones, skin grafts, moving fat from stomach to breasts or bottom...

I wonder though about identical twins. Theoretically, couldn't they share organs without rejection? Of course, if one needs an organ due to a genetic disease, they probably both need it...

Re:Rejection in classic transplants only possible? (1)

diakka (2281) | more than 8 years ago | (#15489573)

I believe the first successful kidney transplant was between identical twins, back before they had drugs to deal with rejection.

Re:Rejection in classic transplants only possible? (1)

Red Flayer (890720) | more than 8 years ago | (#15489498)

Yes, in identical twins and with cloned tissue, rejection does not occur.

Re:Rejection in classic transplants only possible? (1)

Dunbal (464142) | more than 8 years ago | (#15489912)

in identical twins and with cloned tissue, rejection does not occur.

      You would be surprised. It can occur. Even people with the same genetic material can have different cell receptors. The chance of this is very small, but it has happened.

Re:Rejection in classic transplants only possible? (2, Informative)

lowLark (71034) | more than 8 years ago | (#15489553)

The are actually different levels of immuno compatibility between different cells from different individuals . The "big red flags" of immnocompatibility are called the major histocompatibility complex (HMC's [wikipedia.org] ). Large differences in HMC genotypes pretty much ensures tissue rejection, called acute rejection. Twins and cloned tissue have identical MHC's, so this is why they are the prefered donors where possible. This is highest in the first 3 months after transplantation, and is lowered by immunosuppressive agents in maintenance therapy. There are also a host of minor histocompatibility complexes, which can over time elicit at response called chronic rejection, or chronic allograft vasculopathy, which takes about a decade and leads to fibrosis of the vasculature of the new organ. The reasons why some patients end up in rejection while others seem to adapt is not fully understood.

Re:Rejection in classic transplants only possible? (1)

Dunbal (464142) | more than 8 years ago | (#15489891)

I had always assumed that immune rejection ALWAYS happened with organ transplants.

Correct. There are several types of rejection as well, including rejection of the transplanted organ by the host, and rejection of the HOST by the transplanted organ. They each have 3 major types - acute rejection, hyperacute rejection, and chronic rejection.

Are there cases where a transplant has occured without rejection?

      As in a dead patient, or one whose immune system was depressed a little too far (whoops) so that s/he also dies? Yes. Don't sneeze around these people.

Re:Rejection in classic transplants only possible? (1)

ral8158 (947954) | more than 8 years ago | (#15489987)

...Yes. Most of them.

Foreign Investment Opportunities (4, Insightful)

Doc Ruby (173196) | more than 8 years ago | (#15489331)

Britain's 19th Century industry was so obsessed with railroads that it missed the chance to grow into cars. Britain has an auto industry, but it was easily eclipsed by the American car startups like Henry Ford.

America's 20th Century industry was so obsessed with drugs that it's missing the chance to grow into stemcells. Not just from complacency, but from actually outlawing stemcell research. American medical domination of the world can be eclipsed by foreign startups without such handicaps.

The US laws against stemcell prohibit the public investments in the basic science that the medical industry requires to take risks and develop the science. We have entrepreneurs, but they're both averse to medical science and drawn to the indemnities and subsidies available to drug research instead. Abroad there is much less inhibition, which is an opportunity. So stemcell research isn't stopped worldwide, though it is slowed, and less available to the Americans who should be able to dominate it too, instead of being left behind.

Re:Foreign Investment Opportunities (1)

IDontAgreeWithYou (829067) | more than 8 years ago | (#15489423)

A. Stemcell research has not been outlawed.

B. There is NO guarantee that embryonic stem cells will ever cure anything.

I'm not at all against stem cell research of any kind, I just get tired of everybody acting like stem cells will provide the cure for everything. So far, not a whole lot has come of embryonic stem cell research.

Re:Foreign Investment Opportunities (2, Insightful)

Doc Ruby (173196) | more than 8 years ago | (#15489544)

A. Some (substantial) stemcell research has been prevented by law.
B No one ever mentioned any guarantee.

"B" is the most interesting part of your response. My post explicitly mentioned how outlawing government funds has made the risky research less attractive for investors. And the part where you argue against "everybody acting like stem cells will provide the cure for everything" completes the picture. Not "everyone", not "provide the cure for everything". That's the kind of hyperbolic strawman that people use to defend the US government's unwise policy against some important stemcell research.

By making those illogical arguments defending the US policy, you of course are acting against some kinds of stemcell reserach. Denying that you are doing so is also part of the same political posture that brings us these bad policies, while pandering to the least logical part of our population.

Re:Foreign Investment Opportunities (2, Informative)

Colonel Angus (752172) | more than 8 years ago | (#15489929)

This woman is able to walk again [stemcellnews.com] is able to walk again after being paralyzed for 20 years due to an accident.

This boy was going to die before his 17th birthday [cordblood.com] from sickle cell anemia.

It may not be a cure-all and it may not cure the same condition in every person, but there are many examples like the ones above of people being cured. The beauty of the ones above is that I believe they were both cured using cord blood stem cells rather than embryonic stem cells which many express concern about.

Re:Foreign Investment Opportunities (1, Insightful)

Khomar (529552) | more than 8 years ago | (#15489470)

America's 20th Century industry was so obsessed with drugs that it's missing the chance to grow into stemcells. Not just from complacency, but from actually outlawing stemcell research. American medical domination of the world can be eclipsed by foreign startups without such handicaps.

No, what was outlawed was the use of embryonic stem cells not stemcells altogether. There are other sources of stemcells than just those from unborn babies. The fear was that by allowing the use of embryonic stem cells to be used is research, we would be justifying abortion and therefore setting a precendent that it is okay to end human life for medical research. To take a completely utilitarian view on this is to challenge our very identity as humans, and I do not fault anyone from examining this issue closely even if it means halting "progress".

This is far from an academic or theological debate. Nearly every civilization that has collapsed throughout history can link its decline to an abandonment of the principles on which it was built. Once you make the choice that there is such a thing as a life not worth living, where do you draw the line? What if we determine that by using one person's stem cells, another person can extend their life by another 100 years? Should we start harvesting the poor to provide those stem cells for the more fortunate? Maybe we just start taking them from people that we don't agree with politically. Since the moral barrier of valuing all human life has already been crossed, what would stop us?

It doesn't sound good to halt progress, but when that progress can lead to a serious degradation of ethics, caution is the far better choice.

Re:Foreign Investment Opportunities (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15489558)

>No, what was outlawed was the use of embryonic stem cells not stemcells altogether.

Actually that wasn't outlawed either. What isn't currently allowed is for "public funds" to be used for this research. Privately a company can still do research with embryonic cells if they so choose.

Re:Foreign Investment Opportunities (1)

Doc Ruby (173196) | more than 8 years ago | (#15489739)

America is probably the only country, let alone "civilization", built on principles rather than merely the expediency of history at its founding. Unless you mean "this guy is now in charge" is a principle. Even the basis for the "embryonic stemcell research will speed the destruction of our civilization" is invalid, to say nothing of its more elaborate political conjectures. Not to mention the founding American principle of public protection of science and individual achievement.

The "creating a demand for abortion" premise for outlawing public investment in embryonic stemcell research also falls apart under any scrutiny. Private investment includes more competition, therefore more waste, therefore a higher demand for more stemcells. We also have a huge glut in embryonic stemcell supply, from the large (and increasing) rate of abortions. Which are increasing under the same policies invalid both theoretically and practically. None of your scary scenarios have any basis in how stemcells, or even American embryos, work in reality.

The threat to America, and the civilization of which we are a part, is pandering to uneducated, antilogical masses to cover for corporate exploitation. In this case, the drug companies protect their subsidies from the threats of stemcell therapy competitors by inciting religious gangs. To whom they then sell more expensive, less effective drug therapies. The process protects the politicians who protect their industry. At the expense in health and money of everyone but the drug corporation owners, and the politicians they own - and even their health is worse off. And the perversion of our science and politics to serve that subjugation does have the makings of at least defeat of America, if not our destruction, but not the rest of our "civilization", which has plenty of other players not turning history, politics, economics, ethics, science, or logic upside down.

Re:Foreign Investment Opportunities (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15489944)

Nice work...

Who knew that our country was swimming with fundie sheople? I've been unpleasantly surprised by the clout they've wielded.

Re:Foreign Investment Opportunities (1)

Doc Ruby (173196) | more than 8 years ago | (#15490021)

There's not that many, compared to the rest of us. But their political success (as exploitable shills) shows how even a tiny bit of organization, which is their advantage in their church networks, trumps no organization, which is the case with the rest of us, with respect to the issues (corporate theocracy) they're pushing.

A tiny little magnet can lift a big pile of iron filings, just because the magnet is highly organized. When it organizes the filings by polarizing the pile, the magnet is in complete control.

Re:Foreign Investment Opportunities (1)

Red Flayer (890720) | more than 8 years ago | (#15489576)

"Britain has an auto industry, but it was easily eclipsed by the American car startups like Henry Ford."

That's due more to Ford's innovations (assembly line, etc) and philosophy of producing a car for the masses than any industry obsession. Also, the size and low population density of the US was a deciding factor for capitalists -- most train lines in the US weren't that profitable unless you had a monopoly and could exploit it. In addition, coal was widely available in Britain, but gasoline was not for quite some time. Trains can run on coal; it's far too impractical for autos.

Finally, the US economy was in a different position than the British economy at the end of the 19th and beginning of the 20th centuries, Britain was slower to enter and recover from the recession of the 1880s, resulting in few consumers with the reosurces to purchase Britain's relatively expensive cars. It wasn't until the 1930s that Britain's agricultural depression lifted, mostly as a result of scarcity of supply in the European mainland and the US -- and at this point British carmakers did quite well considering their late entry into the market.

Also, note that it was the Germans who invented the gas-powered motor and the gas-powered car.

Re:Foreign Investment Opportunities (1)

Doc Ruby (173196) | more than 8 years ago | (#15489825)

American railroads created more wealth among more new owners more quickly than ever before in any human endeavor. Britain, too. To complete the picture, America's vast emptiness was an even better home to railroads, with its few endpoints, than was Britain, which was better served by smaller scale vehicles like cars. But Britain was distracted by the shorter-term prospects of "railroading the world", while American entrepreneurs like Ford had to compete with American domestic monopolies. Ford's assembly line was just as viable in Britain as it was in his American competitors' factories.

This is exactly parallel to the current American medical predisposition for "drugging the world", rather than move on to riskier, but longer-term strategies like stemcells.

As for the economic epochs you mention, the car industry started in earnest during the Great Depression.

And I further note that the Benz's car invention was designed to run on fuel grown on farms, not pumped from the ground. Which is more a background on how Britain's investors were more attracted by their colonial oil deposits, as were Americans, than in scaling up domestic farm production for fuel (while losing colonial farm production competition), to the benefit of all their industries. Including the drug industry, which basically extracts ex-colonial plant medicine formulas for mass production from petroleum.

The parallels are not only very complete, they form a virtual parallelogram when considering the independent axes. This framework is extremely solid.

Re:Foreign Investment Opportunities (1)

Red Flayer (890720) | more than 8 years ago | (#15490068)

Well, the American switch to nearly 100% petrol was due more to Prohibition than anything else -- ethanol distillers were outlawed. Though it coincides nicely with a lot of corporate interests.

As to the parellel with the drug industry, I think it's fairly superficial, and simplifies too greatly where drug discovery has come from. 'Colonial plant medicine formulas' form a very small proportion of drugs, even of drug families. The most famous example being aspirin, which was not colonial, but from a native European plant source. Or most antibiotic families -- sulfa drugs from chemical dyes, penicillins from ubiquitous mold. And regarding petroleum as the source, that has more to do with the fact that most drugs are organic in nature, and petroleum happens to be the cheapest, most plentiful source of hydrocarbons. During the pre-war era, drug technology was not making use of petroleum to any great extent -- though techniques developed at the time in other industries (and in academia) have been of course greatly utilized.

Finally, the biggest reason I can't buy into your parallelism is that the 'moral' issues of stem cell research are nothing remotely like the social issues facing early cars in Britain. Though I definitely credit the concept of Britain wanting to railroa the world -- after all, they were basing their economic model on the naval superiority model they had until the end of the 19th c.

Re:Foreign Investment Opportunities (1)

nido (102070) | more than 8 years ago | (#15489747)

America's 20th Century industry was so obsessed with drugs ...

Seeking health is by necessity an individualized process. Medicine is a "practice" and not a "science" because everyone responds differently, sometimes radically, sometimes ever so slightly, to the same treatment protocol.

The obsession with drugs came about by certain interests hijacking the medical education process (AMA, Flexner report, etc), standardizing on allopathic modalities (suppressing or treating the symptoms with drugs - tylenol for a fevor, shot to boost red blood cell count, etc), and lobbying to to suppress all alternatives. This allows for moneyed interests on Wall Street to profiteer on an otherwise private transaction, by artificially making their high-priced product an integral part of the medical process.

Some professions have succeeded in counter-lobbying for their right to practice too, with Osteopathic being the only full-privledged of the alternatives (though most D.O.s have been subsumed into medical orthodoxy with only a handful today implementing Dr. Still's revelation in their practice). Chiropractic and naturopathy are two of the others. I'm not a big fan of chiropractic, but it has its uses. Not familiar with naturopathy, Osteopathic Manipulation [osteohome.com] is the greatest. (see my comment history :).

  100 years of Medical Robery [mises.org]
  Real Medical Freedom [mises.org]

Drugs and surgery have their places, but usually some other therapy is called for.

(I took my grandmother out to Mayo Clinic weekly for six months for a $1k injection of some drug to boost her red blood cell count. She had bone cancer, and was also undergoing various chemotherapies - her doctor was "practicing" on her. After 6 months and $50k+ spent on her behalf by Medicare/supplemental, she started hospice care, and finished in a week. Doctor: "oops, lost another one. Maybe these drugs will work on the next patient..." Total waste of money, time and effort.)

Question (1)

DarthChris (960471) | more than 8 years ago | (#15489342)

I've always thought that using organs grown from stem cells is a good idea. But I've also wondered how long it would take to actually grow the organ, and what restrictions this would impose on usage, plus what the inherent limitations are - I imagine this wouldn't be very effective against cancer, for example. Anyone care to enlighten me?

Re:Question (2, Informative)

Dunbal (464142) | more than 8 years ago | (#15489837)

I imagine this wouldn't be very effective against cancer, for example.

      You are correct. Cancer patients are rarely organ transplant recipients. With a few exceptions, the problem with cancer is not the damage it does to the single organ it affected at the beginning. It's the cumulative effect of the metastases (the other tumors that originated from the primary), all the inflammatory gunk the body produces, and the hormonal/electrolyte imbalances that occurthat ends up killing the patient. Not much point in putting in a new kidney when the lungs and brain are full of little tumors is there?

      This would be great for trauma situations, as well as congenital (hereditary) diseases though.

5th Day? (1)

RyoShin (610051) | more than 8 years ago | (#15489350)

Does this mean I could have people pilot me in hybrid jets/helicopters while my car drives me home and I can chat with my friend in the near future [imdb.com] ?

Now In 3D!!! (1)

Doomedsnowball (921841) | more than 8 years ago | (#15489357)

How many Slashdot articles will it take before people are not that impressed with 3D? And isn't it technically incorrect? Shouldn't it be 4D? Real Life! Now in IMAX!!! Please, someone post a article about something more earth-shattering than the conquering of a pesky dimension. It's not like it wasn't in 3D before, it's just a misuse of the language. They should have wrote that they conquered the problem of cell depth, not 3D. Anything but the totally played out 3D.

Feed the cells (1)

DigiShaman (671371) | more than 8 years ago | (#15489408)

So...just how do these cells stay alive? They need blood to carry the oxygen right?

Re:Feed the cells (4, Informative)

Dunbal (464142) | more than 8 years ago | (#15489779)

how do these cells stay alive? They need blood to carry the oxygen right?

      Not really. I'm not a cell biologist, but I have a doctorate in a biology related field (grin).

    Blood is extremely efficient at moving huge quantities of oxygen to a tissue, and getting rid of CO2 and other unwanted byproducts, however tissue does not require such an efficient transport medium all the time. The demands of a cell in a culture where all it has to do is grow, in an ideal liquid medium that is constantly replaced with optimum levels of nutrients, are not all that much, compared to inside the body, where the same cell is made to work (by nervous or hormonal action), is constantly exposed to toxic metabolites from other cells in the area as well as disease. The type of cell that demands most oxygen is the neuron - which is always energy starved. The other tissues (heart muscle, kidney, etc) can make do with a lot less oxygen if it's at rest (the extreme oxygen dependency of the heart is due to the macroscopic design of the organ rather than the tissue itself).

      The human body can exist on nothing but salt water - I've seen it happen in extreme emergency situations where a patient has massive bleeding and not enough replacement blood is available. It's eerie to watch the blood turn from red, to pale pink, to almost transparent, at the bleed site. Usually these patients do not recover so well due to the swelling this causes, rather than lack of oxygen. We are talking about extreme situations and heroic measures here.

      The cell cultures should be ok provided a sterile, isotonic, oxygenated and nutrient filled liquid is pumped through it. The body is limited by the atmospheric concentration of oxygen. Even at 100% efficiency, you can't increase the pO2 of the blood beyond a certain limit. You can do that artificially with 100% oxygen though. It doesn't have to be blood at all.

Not impressed (1)

traveller604 (961720) | more than 8 years ago | (#15489440)

However I'm very impressed if they've really created 2 dimensional cells in the past :D

It's the vessel (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15489468)

FTA: We have developed a special chamber which is patented with the Bernard O'Brien logo and this essentially is an empty box into which we implant a blood vessel using microsurgery techniques. And this is the link with the microsurgery, that we use microsurgery to create this environment and we mix cells inside this chamber and we let them grow according to the specific environment that we can create.

I work in a biomedical engineering lab that develops new imaging techniques and we grow tissue phantoms comprised of cells embedded in a collagen matrix - I think they would fit the bill of a 3D cell matrix. Other professors at our university also work to grow neurons, vascular beds, and heart tissue. The difference is that this group can grow the matrix around a blood vessel using their chamber. The vascularization issue is the main problem facing tissue engineers today and their "patented chamber" allows them to bypass the problem, although I do not see this development as a major leap forward. Until tissue can be grown with functional capillary beds, something this group has not managed to do, it can not be incorporated into a working organ for implantation. At best these boxes can be used for research and perhaps in an artificial liver type device. It is interesting to note the beating heart cells, though.

...better than one... (1)

flyweight_of_fury (972871) | more than 8 years ago | (#15489482)

I, for one, welcome our two-headed overlords.

Rewrite the post? (1)

Enrique1218 (603187) | more than 8 years ago | (#15489494)

3D? Was this suppose to be a buzzword to get more hits? Gamers must be hugh demographic of the Slashdot audience (ok major "well duh!" moment) Ok, an more accurate way to look at this article is that scientists have created complex tissue from stem cell precursors which is more interesting to those who study biology or medicine or just those who may need organs in the next couple decades. I know that the reporter is not very science oriented but rtfa, and you will realized what the article is all about There are slashdotters among us who will naturally read science articles without all the buzzwords. So, save them for the Vista review articles as you posted too many of them.

Ahh the prophecy comes true! (1)

revlayle (964221) | more than 8 years ago | (#15489609)

3D HUMAN CELLS now power the Sony PS3 "Evil Incarnate" Edition

skin is hardly 2D (2, Informative)

ickeicke (927264) | more than 8 years ago | (#15489645)

only being able to create two-dimensional constructions like skin
Skin [wikipedia.org] is hardly 2D [wikimedia.org] .

Well thank God for THAT (1)

Dunbal (464142) | more than 8 years ago | (#15489658)

We have to be thankful for this discovery. After all, the old two dimentional cells were completely useless to everyone except for the inhabitants of Flatland, and since the trade embargo, demand for these two dimetional cells has dropped incredibly. But we can all sleep a little sounder knowing that scientists are capable of growing cells that now come with all 3 dimentions. (/sarcasm)

Or perhaps what they really mean is growing cell CULTURES in 3D? Sheesh, only on slashdot...

Elephant in the Room (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15489732)

The Abortion Debate

A primary bullet in pro-abortion debates is that the discarded fetus can be used for stem cell research. This study indicates that the teqnique used the donor's own cells.

Re:Elephant in the Room (1)

WilliamSChips (793741) | more than 8 years ago | (#15489926)

Doesn't mean that technique will work everywhere. And most anti-choicers would rather see the fetus burned than used in medical studies for some unexplicable reason, so it's a moot point anyways.

What really matters in 3D Human cells (2, Insightful)

WillAffleckUW (858324) | more than 8 years ago | (#15489995)

1. scaffolding - to build on (e.g. a heart is only useful if it has the correct dimensions and actions)
2. tissue variation and connections - if it doesn't connect well, and has specialization on the wrong side (e.g. the inside of a tissue is frequently different from the outside - just think of skin cells at various layers
3. nerves - no nerves in a growth state means we can't knit it together
4. comparable blood vessels, veins, arteries, capilliaries - for the blood you'll be needing
5. tissue compatability - this is critical, most organ transplants have major problems in their non-compatability - rejection is not a good thing, this is why everyone looks for the Holy Grail of Cloned Tissue (since it would automatically be compatable)

Oh, and until we see this done in the lab by three different research teams, it doesn't mean we can do it in real life. Just think of South Korea and their fake-out for why we're so skeptical. Although the canine experiment done there looks like it might be viable, and is therefore an advance.

Finally (1)

HunterZ (20035) | more than 8 years ago | (#15490134)

Finally, we will be able to expand ourselves beyond our meager 2D existence and explore this new, third dimension that we have discovered!
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