HOLLISTON, Mass., Feb. 8, 2011 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Harvard Bioscience, Inc. (Nasdaq:HBIO), a global developer, manufacturer and marketer of a broad range of specialized products used to advance life science research and regenerative medicine, is pleased to announce that its LB2 Lung Regeneration Bioreactor was featured on PBS's Nova ScienceNow television program on January 27, 2011. The lung research and transplantation work was conducted by Dr. Harald Ott at Massachusetts General Hospital.
Harvard Bioscience's bioreactor is featured in a segment of the program titled "Replacing Body Parts," focusing on the ability of new technology to grow human organs, including hearts, lungs and airways for transplantation. The segment includes footage of Claudia Castillo, the recipient of an airway regenerated from her own cells in a different bioreactor, the InBreath Hollow Organ Regeneration Bioreactor, and transplanted by Dr. Paolo Macchiarini. The InBreath technology is exclusively licensed to Harvard Bioscience. Dr. Macchiarini notes that Ms. Castillo is not only leading a normal, productive life but, because the airway was grown from her own cells, has never taken immune suppression drugs. In a normal human organ transplant the recipient needs to take immune suppression drugs for life which is both costly and makes the patient vulnerable to infection.
The host of the program, Dr. Neil deGrasse Tyson, notes that approximately 20 Americans die every day while waiting for an organ transplant and that this technology creates the potential for an unlimited supply of organs for transplantation and the elimination of waiting lists for transplant recipients. Dr. Joseph Vacanti, also of Massachusetts General Hospital, notes that the US waiting list for organ transplants is over 100,000 people. Dr. Doris Taylor of the University of Minnesota, who created the world's first regenerated heart, notes that she believes the large-scale implementation of this technology in hospitals is not decades but only years away.