New 3D printer prints organs right in the body

3D printing technology is increasingly popular in medicine. With the help of bioprinters which are already able to print not only soft internal organs but bones, joints, skin, and blood vessels. These tissues are created in the apparatus and then surgically implanted into the body. This procedure requires large incisions and long recovery time for the patient and also includes an increased risk of infection. To reduce the risks of all kinds of complications, a team of American scientists from the Terasaki Institute, the University of Ohio, and Pennsylvania State University has developed technology to print tissues directly into the human body. An article about the new development was published in Biofabrication magazine.

In order to grow artificial tissues, you need special liquid bio-ink with living cells, as well as growth factors that help these cells to develop and take the necessary form. When developing tissue for direct implantation into the body, several conditions must also be taken into account: for example, the organs must be designed at a body temperature of 37 degrees Celsius, the artificial tissue must freely attach to the living tissue without causing complications or harm to the patient.

American specialists took into account all these conditions and developed bio-ink, which are intended for printing organs directly in the body. In order to get this ink directly into the body, scientists suggest using special nozzles for 3D printers, which distribute the fluid through the nozzle. This tip is made so that it can easily penetrate through soft surfaces and fill the space left after removal of the organ with bio-ink. The unique technology allows the artificial tissue to be firmly attached to the soft living tissue inside the patient's body.

Thus, the new 3D printing technology allows you to directly deliver the right cells to the right place. Such developments are of great value in tissue engineering as they are minimally invasive, safer, and have lower risks of complications.

June 17, 2020, 12:30 p.m.

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