Desktop printers used to make living tissue

Discussion in 'Current Events' started by medea, Jan 24, 2003.

  1. medea macrumors 68030


    Aug 4, 2002
    Madison, Wi
    Scientists are turning to desktop printers in an effort to produce three-dimensional tubes of living tissue and possibly even entire organs.

    Instead of using a degradable scaffold and covering it with cells to produce tissue, scientists in the United States are modifying ink jet printers and using cells to create 3D structures.
    "The work is a first step towards printing complex tissues or even entire organs," New Scientist magazine said on Wednesday.
    Although producing organs is a very long way away, many laboratories are printing arrays of DNA, proteins and even cells.
    Vladimir Mironov, of the Medical University of South Carolina, and Thomas Boland, of Clemson University in the same state, have used a non-toxic, biodegradable gel and animal cells to make the structures.
    "By printing alternate layers of the gel and clumps of cells on to glass slides, they have shown 3D structures such as tubes can be built," according to the magazine.
    If the layers are thin enough the cells fuse when they come in contact with each other and bits of tissue are formed. When the structure is finished the gel can be removed.
    "Like printing with different colors, placing different types of cells in the ink cartridges should make it possible to recreate complex structures consisting of multiple cells," the magazine explained.
    But before scientists can produce organs they will have to solve the problem of creating circulatory networks to provide oxygen and nutrients to the cells in the structures. The scientists hope it will be possible.
    "This could have the same kind of impact that Gutenberg's press did," Mironov said.
  2. LethalWolfe macrumors G3


    Jan 11, 2002
    Los Angeles
    Okay, now that scores a good mark on the freak-o-meter. Printing out tissue... wow.

  3. Thanatoast macrumors 65816


    Dec 3, 2002
    wow, we get closer to the future every day. anyone remember the "reconstuction" scene from fifth element?
  4. vniow macrumors G4

    Jul 18, 2002
    I accidentally my whole location.

    Hell yeah. That was one of my favorite scenes.
  5. rainman::|:| macrumors 603


    Feb 2, 2002
    so all i have to do is go cut up a few cats and i can print myself out a new nose?

    wicked :)


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