Intended for healthcare professionals

Clinical Review State of the Art Review

Advances in regenerative medicine for otolaryngology/head and neck surgery

BMJ 2020; 369 doi: (Published 29 April 2020) Cite this as: BMJ 2020;369:m718
  1. Michael J McPhail, biomedical engineer1,
  2. Jeffrey R Janus, associate professor of otolaryngology - head and neck surgery2,
  3. David G Lott, professor of otolaryngology - head and neck surgery1 3
  1. 1Head and Neck Regenerative Medicine Laboratory, Mayo Clinic Arizona, Scottsdale, AZ, USA
  2. 2Department of Otolaryngology – Head and Neck Surgery, Mayo Clinic Florida, Jacksonville, FL, USA
  3. 3Department of Otolaryngology – Head and Neck Surgery, Mayo Clinic Arizona, Phoenix, AZ, USA
  1. Correspondence to: D G Lott lott.david{at}


Head and neck structures govern the vital functions of breathing and swallowing. Additionally, these structures facilitate our sense of self through vocal communication, hearing, facial animation, and physical appearance. Loss of these functions can lead to loss of life or greatly affect quality of life. Regenerative medicine is a rapidly developing field that aims to repair or replace damaged cells, tissues, and organs. Although the field is largely in its nascence, regenerative medicine holds promise for improving on conventional treatments for head and neck disorders or providing therapies where no current standard exists. This review presents milestones in the research of regenerative medicine in head and neck surgery.


  • Series explanation: State of the Art Reviews are commissioned on the basis of their relevance to academics and specialists in the US and internationally. For this reason they are written predominantly by US authors

  • Contributors: All authors defined the scope of the paper, did the literature search, and wrote and revised the manuscript. DGL is the guarantor.

  • Funding: All authors are supported by the Mayo Clinic Center for Regenerative Medicine.

  • Competing interests: We have read and understood the BMJ policy on declaration of interests and declare the following interests: none.

  • Provenance and peer review: Commissioned; externally peer reviewed.

  • Patient involvement: No patients were involved in developing this manuscript.

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