Robots grow mini-organs from human stem cells

An automated system that uses robots has been designed to rapidly produce human mini-organs derived from stem cells.

Faculty in our Division of Nephrology focus on early detection, prevention and treatment of kidney disease and its complications.

Early achievements

  • Development of the Scribner Shunt – the first successful arterio-venous access for chronic hemodialysis
  • First site for erythropoietin trial in dialysis patients
  • Beginning of medical ethics as a result of the early rationing of dialysis for a few select patients

Notable research

  • Establishment of the nation’s first Kidney Research Institute
  • First clinical trial site for the wearable artificial kidney
  • Center for Dialysis Innovation

Research centers

Center for Dialysis Innovation
Kidney Research Institute

Did you know?

Scribner Shunt inserted into a patient, 1960
Scribner Shunt inserted into a patient, 1960

Seattle has long been the place for kidney research. In 1960, Dr. Belding H. Scribner, the first director of nephrology at the University of Washington, and his colleagues developed a blood access device for hemodialysis called the Scribner shunt, providing a lifeline to patients with kidney failure.

The shunt allowed patients to receive lifesaving dialysis on a long-term basis, changing kidney failure from a death sentence to a treatable condition. Dr. Scribner subsequently founded Northwest Kidney Centers, the first outpatient dialysis program in the world, and made Seattle an international center for advances in kidney disease.