Research Project Underway to Create Artificial Kidney


artificial kidney

When your doctor advises you to receive dialysis treatments to manage kidney disease, you've got to make major changes to your lifestyle and your diet. In many cases, dialysis treatments are used to do the work of the kidneys while a patient is awaiting a transplant. But unfortunately, only about 20,000 kidney transplants are performed a year in the United States, while about 400,000 people are currently living with end-stage kidney disease.

What if there was an alternative to kidney dialysis or a kidney transplant that could do the work of healthy, functioning kidneys? That's what researchers for The Kidney Project set out to discover when they combined their extensive experience in medicine, engineering, and nanotechnology. They wanted to find a way to improve kidney function, quality of life and longevity and lower healthcare costs for people living who reply on kidney dialysis.

The combined years of research by Dr. William H. Fissell, Dr. Shuvo Roy, and a highly-skilled team of medical experts has produced a bioartificial kidney designed to perform the work of healthy kidneys without the need for a transplant or dialysis treatments.

Attached to the circulatory system, this small device is programmed to replicate the functions of the kidneys such as:

  • Removing toxins from the blood through the bladder without dialysis pumps or electrical power
  • Maintaining water volume in the blood
  • Regulating electrolyte balance
  • Maintaining essential metabolic functions

Researchers are currently conducting clinical trials to refine the function of the bioartificial kidney and develop evidence-based data that demonstrates its effectiveness. Based on the current development timeline, the device may be available after clinical trials are complete in 2017.

Until then, you'll need to continue dialysis treatments and manage your condition with medication and specific foods recommended for those on dialysis like the Dialysis-Friendly Meals you'll find at