Israeli Company Successfully Grafts Lab-Grown Bones Into Patients

An Israeli company announced on Monday that it successfully transplanted lab-grown human bone into eleven patients, The Times of Israel reported.

Bonus Biogroup grew the semi-liquid graft by extracting stem cells from the patients’ own fat tissues, which it then cultivated into bone cells. The patients, who suffered from bone loss, had the graft tissue injected into their jaws. “For the first time anywhere in the world, a quick, and effective and safe bone rehabilitation using a single injection of a living, growing graft transplanted inside a human bone has been completed successfully,” the company said in a statement.

Since the cells for the therapy are taken from the patients themselves, the treatment is not likely to result in common complications, such as the transplanted tissue being rejected by the patient’s body.

Ora Burger, vice president of regulation affairs at Bonus Biogroup, told Reuters that the graft “was 100 percent successful in all 11 patients.”

“Now we are going to conduct a clinical study in the extremities, long bones,” she added.

This next step is consistent with a prediction previously made by Bonus Biogroup CEO Dr. Shai Meretzki, who said that the therapy could one day be used for joint replacement, which could help the elderly. “Our bone-regeneration methodology is a powerful tool for treating a variety of bone and joint diseases without the risk of tissue rejection and surgery failure, as with current methods of bone replacement and implants,” he told the Times in 2013.

Meretzki had previously founded the NASDAQ-traded Pluristem Therapeutics, one of Israel’s “more advanced” biomedical companies, according to Reuters.

Another Israeli company recently announced that its bone replacement therapy has been approved in Europe for both dental and orthopedic treatments. CoreBone’s synthetic graft is made from specially cultivated coral, which could help avoid complications such as transplant rejection.

[Photo: Bonus Biogroup / YouTube ]