Scientists from EpiBone, a Brooklyn-based biotech company, are now testing growing bones from stem cells. The process involves taking a fat tissue sample from which to extract the stem cells, and a CT scan of the bone they want to engineer. These will be used to create the shape of the bone, or what Nina Tandon, CEO and co-founder, call a “scaffold.” Cells are then infused into the scaffold, and over about three weeks the cells mature into a piece of bone that’s ready for implantation.
The company claims that this process is better than conventional reconstructive procedures since making new bones is more sustainable that cutting a piece of bone out of one part of the body and transplanting it on another. Tandon hopes patients would no longer need immunosuppressant drugs. She tells Scientific American “…there would be a recognition that it’s the body’s own, since it’s your own DNA.”