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Tuesday, 19th February 2013
In General Japan News,

Japanese scientists grow pancreas in pig

A team of Japanese scientists has been successful in growing a pancreas inside pigs which had been genetically modified to be born without the gland.

The team led by Hiromitsu Nakauchi from the University of Tokyo's Institute of Medical Science and Hiroshi Nagashima, a professor of developmental engineering at Meiji University, hope that the research may eventually lead to pancreas transplants in humans.

This is not the first time a pancreas has been generated in an animal as the duo previously successfully completed the operation in mice.

Japanese newspapaer Asahi Shimbun suggested that the scientists may encounter problems proceeding further with their research due to restrictions imposed on embryo work by the government.

The paper quoted Mr Nakauchi as saying "we hope to solve the technical challenges in three to five years [but] for about two years, we have been calling for the guidelines to be reviewed. If no decision is forthcoming, we will have to consider doing our research overseas".

Written by Graham McPherson