Now a ring made from bones! | india | Hindustan Times
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Now a ring made from bones!

india Updated: Dec 08, 2006 19:32 IST
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Traditional wedding rings made of gold may soon be a thing of the past, for replacing them may be those made of the couple’s own bones.

The jewellery is the brainchild of Boffins and artists in the UK who are trying to learn how to craft complex shapes from bone tissues.

As for how it would be possible for scientists to make jewellery from a person’s bones, well the process involves taking bone cells from wisdom teeth, feeding them with nutrients, and then growing then on a “scaffold” material called bioglass, a special bioactive ceramic which mimics the structure of bone material, in the lab.

Among the first people to receive such rings were Harriet Harriss and Matt Harrison, one of five couples involved in the project.

"When you think about it for a while, it's like ivory but more ethical, and the material has never been part of Harriet, just grown from her code taken from her body,” the BBC quoted Harrison, as saying.

Boffins are hopeful that the technique could eventually be used to grow large bits of bone for people with cancer or who need bone replacements.

"This will improve the welfare of the patient as you won't need to harvest bone from elsewhere in the body," said Dr Ian Thompson, a research fellow in oral and maxillofacial surgery at King's College, the scientist on the project.

"So if you have damaged a part of your jaw, you won't need to take a piece of the rib or somewhere else in the body to replace that bit of damaged bone we would simply grow that new piece in the laboratory and then implant it," he added.

Pieces of biojewellery are to go on display at an exhibition at Guy's and St Thomas' Hospital in London, from December 7 until February 14, 2007.

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