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Researchers create functioning human lung on a microchip

Laura June
06.28.10
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Researchers at Harvard University have successfully created a functioning, respirating human 'lung' on a chip in a lab. Made using human and blood vessel cells and a microchip, the translucent lung is far simpler in terms of observation than traditional, actual human lungs (for obvious reasons), in a small convenient package about the size of a pencil eraser. The researchers have demonstrated its effectiveness and are now moving toward showing its ability to replicate gas exchange between lung cells and the bloodstream. Down the road a bit more, the team hopes to produce other organs on chips, and hook them all up to the already operational heart on a chip. And somewhere in the world, Margaret Atwood and her pigoons are rejoicing, right? Here's to the future. Video description of the device is below.

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