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Medical News & Perspectives
June 5, 2018

The Body’s Largest Artery Aids in Building a Better Trachea

JAMA. 2018;319(21):2160-2161. doi:10.1001/jama.2018.5374

During his fellowship in thoracic surgery, Emmanuel Martinod, MD, PhD, embarked on a decade-long challenge: find a suitable substitute for the human airway. Success would mean that some patients with lung cancer might avoid a risky pneumonectomy or the prognosis for end-stage tracheobronchial disease could be more hopeful than palliative care.

“We started to work on this topic in 1997,” said Martinod, professor of thoracic surgery at the Assistance Publique Hôpitaux de Paris and University of Paris. The first 10 years were spent poring over the medical literature on airway transplantation and developing animal models.