The Self-Regulating Bioartificial Kidney, Part 2: Managing the Challenges
The Kidney Project was launched in 2015 by William Fissell, MD, and Shuvo Roy, PhD, with the goal “to create a small, surgically implanted, and free-standing bioartificial kidney to treat end stage renal disease.” Building on previous research and work by Dr. Fissell, Dr. Roy and David Humes, MD, the Kidney Project has resulted in a bioartificial kidney that is moving from porcine to human trials. Although the Kidney Project and its technology are still at an early stage of development, if all goes according to plan, final clinical trials of the bioartificial kidney and FDA approval may be possible within the early part of the next decade. (Read about the anatomy of the bioartificial kidney in Part 1 of this blog series.)
The Kidney Project has experienced a variety of challenges in refining the bioartificial kidney. For years the inability to sufficiently miniaturize the device for implantation in the abdominal cavity was an obstacle to designing a successful prototype. Yet this resolved itself as the silicon manufacturing industry continued to make smaller and smaller chips, allowing the device to be downsized to workable dimensions.
To continue reading, check out the DaVita Medical Insights blog for the rest of Dr. Bryan Becker’s take on the fascinating future of kidney care.