1. Breakthrough

    First Transplant of Synthetic Organ

    In this image taken June 9, 2011 and released by Karolinska University Hospital Thursday, July 7, 2011, Professor Paolo Macchiarini, center, of Karolinska University Hospital and colleagues perform an operation at the hospital in Stockhom, Sweden. A 36-year-old man who had tracheal cancer has received a new lab-made windpipe seeded with his own stem cells in a procedure in Sweden they call the first successful attempt of its kind, officials said Thursday. The Karolinska University Hospital in Stockholm said the surgery was performed June 9, and that the patient is on his way to a "full recovery." He will be released from a hospital Friday.

    Karolinska University Hospital / AP Photo

    Surgeons in Sweden have successfully carried out the first synthetic organ transplant, implanting a lab-grown windpipe in a man suffering from cancer. A glass replica of the patient's windpipe was soaked in a solution of stem cells taken from his bone marrow and lining cells taken from his nose until the windpipe was fully formed. Apparently it's a quick process: A windpipe can be made in between two days and a week, and because it uses the patient's own cells, there's no risk of organ rejection.