Breakthrough in beating back pain

BIOENGINEERED spinal discs that integrate with the body could one day bring relief to countless numbers of back-pain sufferers, say researchers.

The disc implants were tested on rats with spine damage and found to restore mechanical function.

Study leader Dr Lawrence Bonassar, from Cornell University in New York, said: "We've engineered discs that have the same structural components and behave just like real discs.

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"The hope is that this promising research will lead to engineered discs that we can implant into patients with damaged discs."

The research is published today in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

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