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MAKING PIG LIVERS HUMANLIKE IN QUEST TO EASE ORGAN SHORTAGE

EDEN PRAIRIE, Minn. (AP) — Workers in a suburban Minneapolis lab use shampoo to wash away the pig cells that made the organ do its work as they attempt to make it more humanlike to develop replacement human organs. The process requires dissolving and flushing out unwanted cells to create a suitable scaffolding. Next human liver cells — taken from donated organs unable to be transplanted — will be oozed back inside that shell. Those living cells move into the scaffolding’s nooks and crannies to restart the organ’s functions. Miromatrix CEO Jeff Ross says those are some of the steps that allow them to regrow the organ. He says human bodies won’t see it as a pig organ anymore. Sometime in 2023, Miromatrix plans first-of-its-kind human testing of a bioengineered organ to start trying to prove it. Approval is needed for the experiment from the Food and Drug Administration.

STAFF GIVES SOUTH DAKOTA GOVEROR FLAMETHROWER FOR CHRISTMAS

PIERRE, S.D. (AP) — South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem (NOOM) got a hot Christmas gift from her staff — literally. Noem’s staff gave her a Pulsefire LRT flamethrower with an engraved plate of the state motto “Under God, the people rule.” That’s according to the Sioux Falls Argus Leader. A video posted to Twitter on Sunday shows Noem, decked out in camouflage, using the flamethrower to torching a pile of cardboard boxes on a snowy farm. She shoots a final spray of flames into the boxes, raises her arm with a flourish and says “Boom, perfect.” According to Tennessee-based ammunitions company MidSouth Shooters, a Pulsefire LRT costs about $650. Noem spokesperson Ian Fury said no tax dollars went toward the purchase.

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