Scientists Printing 3-D Human Organs

photo courtesy of engineering.com

photo courtesy of engineering.com

For years researchers have been experimenting with human cells in order to reproduce blood vessels, skin tissues, urine tubes and other important organs. An engineering innovation of a 3-D printer is allowing scientists to print small strips of the organ, according to cnn.com.

“The mechanical process isn’t all that complicated. The tricky part is the materials, which are biological in nature,” said Mike Titsch, editor of 3D Printer World. The purpose or reason for this bioprinting device is to create a real functioning organ that will benefit someone with a vital organ supply.

The process involves a biopsy of a patient’s cell tissue which is layered on a 3D mold and grown in an incubator outside the body. Then with the bioprinting technology, the information is sent to the computer and evaluated in order to build the tissue, according to nationaljournal.com.

“The ethical questions are bound to be the same concerns we have seen in the past. Many major medical breakthroughs have suffered moral resistance, from organ transplants to stem cells,” said Titsch of 3D Printer World.

Bioprinting technology of organs can be used to test drugs instead of experimenting on real people in order to avoid danger of someone’s health. The testing of drugs can help discover side effects and the amount of insulin needed for transplant according totelegraph.co.uk.