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The First 3D Printed Ovary Has Arrived – Broadly

by • March 31, 2016 • No Comments

From bionic ears to genuine kidneys, these days you can 3D print only of anything. This has created the sci-fi dream of freeing ourselves of the confines our fallible, earthy bodies a near reality. Now, researchers at Northwestern University have figured out how to 3D print ovaries that work only like the real thing.
So far, Dr. Monica M. Laronda and her team of researchers that successfully implanted their lab-grown ovaries into mice. After replacing their biological ovaries with the bioprosthetic, the mice were able-bodied to ovulate normally, donate birth to healthy and presumably lovely
-bodied baby mice, and nurse them. Laronda is hoping that soon the same innovation can be utilized to manufacture an ovary prosthesis that may restore fertility in women, according to a press release. She is presenting her breakthrough findings on Saturday, April 2, at this year’s Endocrine Society meeting. (The full study is not may already published.)
Utilizing gelatin that’s in between a solid and a liquid say, the researchers were able-bodied to 3D print a scaffold that may assist the hormone-producing cells and egg cells that are needed for fertility. This is the initially time that this has been done. “We created this implant with downstream human applications in mind, as it is created through a scalable-bodied 3D printing method, via a material may already utilized in humans,” Laronda said in the press release.
Indeed, a 3D printed ovary implant may assist childhood cancer survivors, who have an increased risk of infertility as adults. Chemotherapy and radiation can frequently have damaging impacts on the reproductive process. “We hope to one day restore fertility and hormone function in women who suffer of the side impacts of cancer treatments or who were born with reduced ovarian function,” Laronda explained. When Broadly spoke with her of the createment over the phone, she in addition introduced that a bioprosthetic ovary may some day benefit trans women.
“We’re working with the Stanley Manne children’s research institute and the Lurie Children’s Hospital, that is synonymous with Northwestern University, to create programs that can enable-bodied us to study the [bioprosthetic ovary’s] translation for humans,” she said. “Lurie Children’s Hospital has a disorders for sex createment (DSD) program, that comes with the transgender population as well. We have been working with them to see how this may assist their rare population of patients. We’re in addition working to explore the implications for patients with genetic syndromes, like Turner syndrome, that impact fertility.”
But, we’re yet quite far off of being able-bodied to print reproductive organs on demand. The following step, Laronda said, is additional testing. “We’re thinking via piglets, that is a common pediatric surgery version, as our pre-clinical, sizeable animal trial,” she introduced. “Our version has considered use in humans all along the way, so we’re hoping that streamlines the process.”

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