Developmental engineering the kidney: leveraging principles of morphogenesis for renal regeneration.
Multiple methodological approaches are currently under active development for application in tissue engineering and regenerative medicine of tubular and solid organs. Most recently, developmental engineering (TE/RM), or the leveraging of embryonic and morphological paradigms to recapitulate aspects of organ development, has been proposed as a strategy for the sequential, iterative de novo assembly of tissues and organs as discrete developmental modules ex vivo, prior to implantation in vivo. In this article, we focus on the kidney to highlight in detail how principles of developmental biology are impacting approaches to TE of this complex solid organ. Ultimately, such methodologies may facilitate the establishment of clinically relevant therapeutic strategies for regeneration of renal structure and function, greatly impacting treatment regimens for chronic kidney disease. Copyright © 2012 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.