Skip to comments.A new way to print cells could make it easier to 3D print organs
Posted on 02/10/2014 10:42:43 PM PST by 2ndDivisionVet
If you think 3D printing plastic is advancing quickly, take a look at bioprinting, a technology that uses inkjet-style printers to create living tissue. Organovo already plans to commercialize its 3D-printed liver tissue this year, and the National Institute of Health recently took an interest in 3D-printed eye tissue.
But squeezing living cells through an inkjet printer kills many of them. Houston Methodist Research Institute researchers say they have developed a better way: a technology called Block-Cell-Printing (BloC-Printing) that leaves nearly 100 percent of the cells alive, instead of 50 to 80 percent. They published their work Monday in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.
Instead of a nozzle, BloC-Printing relies on a silicone mold to deposit cells. The mold is pitted with tiny holes. When cells are poured into the mold, much like ink being poured onto a stamp, they flow through until they find an empty slot to slip into. Then the mold is lifted away, leaving just the cells. The molds holes can be in a grid-shaped pattern, which creates a sheet of regularly-spaced cells. Or the holes can be adapted to form whichever shape researchers need.
Unlike inkjet printing, BloC-Printing can be used only to create 2D shapes at this point. That means printing entire organs or thick tissue is still a ways off. However, its much cheaper than inkjet printing. While inkjet printers can cost tens or even hundreds of thousands of dollars, each BloC-Printing mold costs a dollar to make. A syringe, Petri dish and cells are the only other required materials.
To test the technology, the researchers printed cancer cells and studied their growth. They also printed living brain cells in a regular grid. The cells were able to form connections that allow them to communicate.
Such work could be helpful in understanding Alzheimers disease and other neurodegenerative diseases, research team lead Lidong Qin said in a release. BloC-Printing can be combined with molecular printing for many types of drug screening, RNA interference and molecule-cell interaction studies. We believe the technology has big potential.
For most of a million years there wasn’t anything corresponding to modern man. There were anthropoid apes. Actual mankind suggests an origin in the vicinity of 50K years ago at the most, even reckoned by classic old earth theories.
I still say you’re too easily impressed.
I’ve seen a couple of hundred thousand, but I get your drift. But the Neanderthals and a few others were pretty close to modern humans.
By printing a human liver and retina that the body won’t reject because it’ll be your cells? That doesn’t impress you? Or the heart that they’re working on? That sure would’ve looked like magic to our ancestors.
It won’t impress me until it can be used to cure very mental disorder and genetic disease and birth defect out there. If it can do that, then I will be impressed, but until then, not even a little.
Printing cells? Cool!
One of the more famous old-earth scientist/theologians, Hugh Ross, has pointed out quite a difference between the Neandert[h]als and Homo sapiens. Homo sapiens has a much larger brain to body ratio than any purported predecessors, and in apparently explicit room for more cerebrum.
DNA and rare soft tissue samples (as occasionally a specimen will be found encapsulated in original ice) will be able to speak a lot more clearly to the biological evolutionary questions than today’s phenotype tracing can — and as of yet, just the entire human genome is still a cumbersome thing to trace. I take phenotype tracing with a huge grain of salt, as things which were considered almost the same in phenotype have shown up to have a relatively large difference in genotype.
Well, that’s not a good attitude either. Some of the associated achievements may be glorious, but the glory should be ascribed to God. It’s a more advanced form of tissue grafting.
That is at least 100-200 years away would be my guess. But you never know, with the way things are moving. Did you know that they now have a “Star Trek” type medical scanner in production?
Medicine Jim, but not as we know it: Star Trek-style tricorder that scans for signs of disease
Thanks again 2dv! Your tireless 3D printer posts keep us all informed about this important new technology ... :-)
There’s so many new things almost every day. Organs, furniture, aircraft, houses, cars, etc., etc.
What in the Wide-Wide World of Sports is that thing?
It’s from the movie spy kids 1 or 2.
That’s Minion, an evil genius who was trapped in his own flesh altering machine by the spy kids.