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Researchers have created the first bioengineered urethra, the part of the urinary tract that funnels waste from the body, and proved that it can work in patients. The thin tubes were grown from a scaffold of biodegradable material seeded with bladder cells from the patients themselves. Once transplanted into five boys with damaged urethras, the tissues continued to develop and eventually functioned as well as healthy urethras, removing urine for up to six years. The scientists have previously used the same technique to make human bladders.