Low-Cost Human Organ Printing

By on January 10, 2016
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Groundbreaking research at Carnegie Mellon could edge us closer to the printing of human organs — and researchers there made the advancement using a low-cost printer.

What’s fascinating about the Carnegie Mellon work is that they were able to print living tissue using an off-the-shelf printer that only cost $1,000. The researchers also came up with a technique to eliminate the rigid frames that would otherwise be required to support the weight of the printed tissue.

Their work was published in Science Advances.

“We’ve been able to take MRI images of coronary arteries and 3-D images of embryonic hearts and 3D bioprint them with unprecedented resolution and quality out of very soft materials like collagens, alginates and fibrins,” said Adam Feinberg, an associate professor of Materials Science and Engineering and Biomedical Engineering at Carnegie Mellon University, and leader of the Regenerative Biomaterials and Therapeutics Group.

The researchers modified a number of low-cost printers using open-source hardware and software.

“Not only is the cost low, but by using open-source software, we have access to fine-tune the print parameters, optimize what we’re doing and maximize the quality of what we’re printing,” Feinberg said. “It has really enabled us to accelerate development of new materials and innovate in this space. And we are also contributing back by releasing our 3D printer designs under an open-source license.”

Source: Low-Cost Human Organ Printing

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