Earlier this year, researchers at the Wake Forest Institute of Regenerative Medicine successfully transplanted fully functioning lab-grown vaginas. Now, after two decades of research, a team from the same institution has bioengineered human penises that could be ready for human testing in as soon as five years. The transplanted penis would be grown from a patient’s own penile cells in about six weeks, explained professor Anthony Atala to The Guardian. He envisions the lab-grown penises as solutions for patients who suffer from congenital abnormalities, traumatic injuries, or cancer.
So far there have been very successful studies in rabbits, but the road to FDA approval and human transplant remains long. Researchers are still conducting tests regarding safety, durability, and — probably most important for anyone who might receive a lab-grown penis — functionality.