Alice Chen, a biomedical engineering grad student in the Harvard-MIT Division of Health Sciences and Technology and at the Harvard School of Engineering and Applied Sciences, was awarded a $30,000 2011 Lemelson-MIT student prize last week for her work in building artificial human livers that could one day help patients waiting for organ transplants, reports The Boston Globe's Carolyn Johnson. Even though her work is still years away from helping transplant patients, Chen has found a more immediate use for her research — she discovered that she could implant the engineered liver cells into mice to create "humanized" animals that can be used in drug screening, Johnson says. "Chen realized that a mouse with a humanized liver could surmount a major hurdle in the development of drugs and provide a new model for diseases that do not affect rodents the same way they affect humans, such as hepatitis C," she adds.
Why Wait? Build Your Own
Mar 14, 2011