We all asked ourselves at least once: but what is the purpose of 3d printing? To many things, including the faithful reproduction of organs e human tissues. Will organ donation become a distant memory? Reading the latest news, it seems so.
The team is giving the news Wake Forest Institute for Regenerative Medicine, whose researchers would have found a way to print “living” tissues and organs that can function properly when implanted in an animal's body. At the head of the initiative is Dr. Anthony Atala, who has already successfully attempted the use of XNUMXD printing for bladder surgery in the past.
But now we look to the future, and we study the realization of muscle structures, bones and ear tissues, as we read in the journal Nature. However, traditional 3D printers are not used, but an advanced and complex machine called Integrated Organ and Printing System (ITOP), which processes and molds a plastic-like and biodegradable material. This, once modeled in the shape you want, will have inside the microchannels that allow the circulation of oxygen and nutrients necessary for life.
An example is the ear you see in the photo, which was implanted under the skin of a guinea pig, in the laboratory, to allow the formation of cartilage and blood vessels. At this point it can be removed and transferred to a human being. A great turning point in the history of medicine, which could give new hope to the many patients waiting for a transplant.