A biological device based on stem cells encourages the formation of new blood vessels, and will help treat diabetics and patients in need of catheterization.

Hebrew University researchers have created a bio-device for treating patients with poor blood circulation. This may provide a biological solution to millions of people all over the world who suffer from poor blood supply to their legs, as in extreme cases of diabetes.

The device could also provide in the future an alternative to coronary bypass surgery where instead of a mechanical intervention by a heart surgeon the device “instructs’ cells to create new vessels at the site of implantation and thus providing new channels for heart irrigation.

Using their expertise in tissue engineering and their recent success in developing a full endocrine micro-pancreas, the group of Professor Eduardo Mitrani together with Ph.D. student Assaf Assis and others have now developed a miniature complex three-dimensional bio device, using human stem cells.

Later on, thanks to a collaboration with Hadassah Medical Center, the group has developed a similar bio device using stem cells isolated from the bone marrow of diabetic patients. The researchers found that implantation of such devices in the area to be treated results in the creation of a whole network of blood vessels that now irrigate the target area in only a few days after implantation.

In more recent research to be published soon, they have now constructed the device using cells isolated from a simple blood sample derived from the patient to be treated.

Read the papers: