A boy with a fatal skin disease has been saved by pioneering doctors who created an almost complete new skin for him in the laboratory.
The seven-year-old boy suffered the genetic condition known as ‘butterfly disease’ as his skin is as delicate as the insect – likely to blister and peel off at the slightest touch.
He had lost 80 per cent of his skin and was near death and was in a drug induced coma before he had the groundbreaking experimental surgery.
Doctors grew a new skin in the laboratory – which featured stem cells genetically altered to eliminate the flaw in the gene that causes the disease.
In what has been described as a major breakthrough in the use of stem cells to treat disease, this was then successfully transplanted it on to his body.
Now 21 months later, the boy who had been admitted to a hospital burns unit close to death, appears to be fully recovered.