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This resource pertains to organ fabrication. Organ printing is a upcoming technology in its developmental stages.

Organ Printing[edit | edit source]

There is speculation about using a printer to fabricate organs. Scientists had the problem of how to use living cells as ink, but recently this problem has been solved by the development of bio-ink.[1][2]

Cartilage fabrication which is far simpler has been achieved, and it has been constructed to be durable.[3] The surrounding tissue still needs time to heal and the body must also produce cartilage to mend with the synthetic cartilage.[3]

Another alternative is to print the 3 dimensional organ structure, then grow cells on it.

With these advances in organ printing, there is still a way to go before it becomes a modern reality.

It is better that the cell samples to be duplicated come from the person to receive the synthetic organ. This way the body is less likely to reject the organ, since they will be of the same type cells.

A bladder fabricated from the patient's own cells, transplanted into the patient has been successful.[4] Fabrication of many other types of organs has not been attempted yet.

Nano-engineering[edit | edit source]

Other[edit | edit source]

There is a way of creating two dimensional tissues, but the method is primitive.[5] Some problems are that the tissue layer is too thin or can't be grown into a structural form. A synthetic structure could be built to support the synthetic structure. There is a separate proposal to take 2 dimensional tissues, and fold them into 3-d organs, taking a page from origami.[6]

What about fabricating organs the same way materials are molded in assembly lines?

References[edit | edit source]

  1. Newton, Jennifer (2012), Ink containing living cells to print tissue, RSC
  2. University of Wollongong (November 16, 2012), New ink formulated to print living human tissue,
  3. 3.0 3.1 Cartilage made easy with novel hybrid printer
  4. Printing a human kidney, BBC; TED, June 2012
  5. Yirka, Researchers devise method for growing 3-D heart tissue, Medical Xpress
  6. Herring, Angela (2013), Origami unfolds a new tissue engineering strategy, Northeastern University