PETER YATES / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY PETER YATES / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Bio-artificial kidney. Close-up of a bio- artificial kidney tubule unit working during laboratory trials. A bio-artificial kidney is a device implanted in humans that filters the blood using cultured kidney cells. Here, filtered blood flows along a tube into the canister, where kidney cells reabsorb essential blood elements. These are then returned to the body with the blood in the other tube. This research was undertaken by David Humes' team in Michigan, USA. Humes founded the company Nephros to create the first bio-artificial kidney. Although prototype testing has been successful, it is likely to be years after 1997 before such kidneys are available.
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