Friday, February 8, 2013

Wow patents! Bioprinting

 Copyright © Françoise Herrmann
[Posted Friday 2/08/2013] Claims in reference to a bioprinting process were by far the most impressive material (with no pun intended) that I have ever translated. Can you imagine a cobbled ink-jet printer using cells instead of toner to print a (human) kidney in 3D? Seriously? This was like another episode of Startrek... until I did the research in the field of tissue regeneration and tissue engineering, and realized this was far from fiction. Scientists do not even have to know the exact relationships or configuration of cells because cells have memory of their function and a few days after being printed they find their perfect place, fuse and start to function together as an organ… So, yes, seriously, there are printers that print human tissue, and human organs in 3D… using tissue architecture algorithms. The dream of course is that these printers will solve donor shortages and tissue rejection complications since it takes a few hours to print a human kidney, using the patient’s own cells. And for animal rights activists, printed tissue could replace the use of animals in research, not to mention food grade printed tissue replacing the meat on your plate…. (with proper FDA approval…!) See the following video to suspend your own disbelief! -- FH 


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