The emphasis throughout this volume is on the systematic development of the viewpoint that regeneration is an instance of synthesis of tissues and organs. This has three simple consequences. The first is the requirement for a special kind of experimental reactor, free of tissues that do not regenerate spontaneously. The second calls for meticulous physicochemical and biological characterization of the end products from such a synthetic reaction. The third calls for the required use of appropriate non-diffusible regulators in the experimental reactor. These insoluble matrices induce adult cells to abandon their normal proclivity in closing up adult wounds in exchange for synthesizing physiological tissues. This approach is independent of the organ under study. It is developed in substantial depth during the first several chapters by limiting the discussion to just two two organs that are quite different from each other, namely skin and peripheral nerves. The conclusions from this analysis apply to either organ with roughly equal strength. This intriguing result clearly suggests a generic methodology for synthesis of other organs.
The book also features an extensive bibliography, and extensive bodies of independent data on organ regeneration from the journal literature have been collected together for the first time and accessibly presented in tabular form, enabling direct comparisons. In short, the generic organ-blind methodology described in this volume should be useful to most students and practitioners of tissue engineering.