Technology have done it again,Scientists have created a new technology that could acts as an artificial womb. The artificial womb acts just like a womb, it protects and nature the foetus till its fully healthy.
In a major step aimed at improving the survival odds for extremely premature infants, Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia researchers have created an artificial womb — a fluid-filled “BioBag” that kept fetal lambs alive and healthy outside their mothers until they could survive on their own.
The foetus receives oxygen through the artificial umbilical cords and continued to develop much as if they had remained in the uterus of a woman, leading the team to express hope that the procedure could be tried on the youngest human premises within three to five years.
This research dates back to 1996. Researchers have been working on artificial wombs—or “ectogenesis”—for years. In 1996, Yoshinori Kuwabara of Japan’s Juntendo University successfully nurtured fetal goats in plastic chambers filled with amniotic-like fluid. But past efforts often harmed animals because they relied on mechanical pumps to circulate blood.
The authors plan to redesign the fluid-filled plastic enclosure so that it looks more like a traditional incubator and doesn’t alarm parents.Dr Flake proceeded with this saying. “The final system will be “parent-friendly,I don’t want this to be visualized as fetuses hanging on the wall in bags. That’s not the way this human device will look or work,”
The research team, was led by Dr. Alan Flake from the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, It may take another some time before this technology can be used on premature human infants, but it’s an important step in that direction.The future I say is closer than we think.
The artificial womb — “the biobag” — is a large plastic bag filled with fluid and kept in a state that mimics the inside of a uterus of a woman. It has an umbilical chord which is attached to a device that provides the blood with oxygen. The goal is that, after a few weeks in the biobag, the baby could be removed and placed on a ventilator until further developed to the point where they can breath on their own.
It was at first a fiction in sci-fi movie, growing foetus in artificial bags – a lamb inside a plastic bag with tubes and fluids helping it grow.But researchers have shown it’s possible to nurture and protect lambs in late stages of gestation inside an artificial womb; technology which could become a lifesaver for many premature human babies in just a few years.
“If we can develop an extra-uterine system to support growth and organ maturation for only a few weeks, we can dramatically improve outcomes for extremely premature babies,” Flake, a doctor at the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, added. Remember study wasn’t designed to replace a mother’s natural womb, but the invention could one day help keep premature infants off ventilators and out of incubators when they are born.