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Tissue Eng Part B Rev. 2016 Aug;22(4):330-40. doi: 10.1089/ten.TEB.2015.0467. Epub 2016 Apr 12.

Update on Renal Replacement Therapy: Implantable Artificial Devices and Bioengineered Organs.

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1 Center for Advanced Biomaterials for Health Care, IIT@CRIB, Istituto Italiano di Tecnologia , Napoli, Italy .
2 Department of Surgery, Transplant Institute , Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts.


Recent advances in the fields of artificial organs and regenerative medicine are now joining forces in the areas of organ transplantation and bioengineering to solve continued challenges for patients with end-stage renal disease. The waiting lists for those needing a transplant continue to exceed demand. Dialysis, while effective, brings different challenges, including quality of life and susceptibility to infection. Unfortunately, the majority of research outputs are far from delivering satisfactory solutions. Current efforts are focused on providing a self-standing device able to recapitulate kidney function. In this review, we focus on two remarkable innovations that may offer significant clinical impact in the field of renal replacement therapy: the implantable artificial renal assist device (RAD) and the transplantable bioengineered kidney. The artificial RAD strategy utilizes micromachining techniques to fabricate a biohybrid system able to mimic renal morphology and function. The current trend in kidney bioengineering exploits the structure of the native organ to produce a kidney that is ready to be transplanted. Although these two systems stem from different technological approaches, they are both designed to be implantable, long lasting, and free standing to allow patients with kidney failure to be autonomous. However, for both of them, there are relevant issues that must be addressed before translation into clinical use and these are discussed in this review.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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