Scientists at Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center in Ohio were successful in creating small stomachs, also called 'gastric organoids,' from stem cells. The researchers persuaded pluripotent stem cells to grow specifically into stomachs using a cocktail of proteins that created a pathway of interactions that lead to organ formation. The resulting organoids were found to be strikingly similar to an actual human stomach in their gland structure but lacked blood cells, immune cells, or the ability to process food. Researchers tested the tiny stomachs by injecting them with Helicobacter pylori, a bacterium that can cause ulcers and stomach cancer in humans. The effects of the bacterium on the lab-grown stomachs mirrored the effects it creates in human stomachs. The researchers now plan to use these artificially grown stomachs to study diseases such as cancer, and to test the stomach's response to drugs.
Read more in Nature.