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BMJ 2010; 341 doi: (Published 20 July 2010) Cite this as: BMJ 2010;341:c3842

Scientists have successfully taken apart a rat lung and rebuilt it with new cells. The new lung exchanged oxygen and carbon dioxide for a short time after being transplanted into a live rat. The technique involved removal of the spongy epithelial cells and blood vessels of the lungs with detergent, leaving a scaffold of connective tissue that retained the mechanical properties of the original lung. The scaffold was “marinated” in a mixture of lung epithelial and endothelial cells and within a few days the engineered lung contained alveoli, microvessels, and small airways that were repopulated with the appropriate cell types (Sciencexpress 2010; published online 24 June, doi:10.1126/science.1189345).

What impact do common skin conditions have on the British public? Studies presented to the British Association of Dermatologists’ conference in Manchester about acne, eczema, and psoriasis report that 90% of those afflicted say their skin has influenced a major life changing decision, and 20% say it affected their decision whether to have children. Just under half said their skin condition …

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