0159 GMT February 20, 2020
Speaking to Mehr News Agency on Saturday, Dr. Mehdi Hajian, the head of the biotechnology research institute at Royan, said a team of researchers are working on a long-term and complicated project to grow human organs, with the first focus being the pancreas.
“In the first phase, we are planning to grow the organs inside the body of an animal. For that purpose, we need an animal that does not have that particular organ to being with. For this project, we are going to grow a human pancreas inside a goat’s body,” he said.
“We are going to work on a goat whose body does not grow a pancreas on its own. For that, we need to produce embryos that do not have the genes for growing a pancreas. Then, we will transfer the embryos to receiving goats. This phase will be completed within six months, and the cells are ready,” he added.
The project is a joint endeavor between the recombinant proteins group and the embryology group at the biotechnology research institute of Royan, he noted.
Royan — Iran’s leading center for stem cell research — was established in 1991.