A team of researchers at the French National Institute of Health and Medical Research in Bordeaux have grown yarn from human skin cells that they call a “human textile” — and they say it could be used by surgeons to close wounds or assemble implantable skin grafts.
It has been previously shown that sheets of cell-assembled extracellular matrix (CAM), which are entirely biological yet robust, can be mass-produced for clinical applications using normal, adult, human fibroblasts.
CAM yarns can be generated with a range of physical and mechanical properties. This material can be used as a simple suture to close a wound or can be assembled into fully biological, human, tissue-engineered vascular grafts (TEVG) that have high mechanical strength and are implantable.
These human textiles offer a unique level of bio-compatibility and represent a new generation of completely biological tissue-engineered products.
The key advantage of the gruesome yarn is that unlike conventional synthetic surgical materials, the material doesn’t trigger an immune response that can complicate the healing process.
To create it, the researchers cut sheets of human skin cells into long strips — and then “wove” them into a yarn-like material that can be fabricated into a variety of shapes.
Moreover, by combining this truly “bio” material with a textile-based assembly, it becomes highly versatile and can produce a variety of strong human textiles that can be readily integrated in the body.
Reference- New Scientist, Journal Acta Biomateriala, Futurism