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Wake Forest Team Develops Process to 3D Print Bone, Cartilage and Muscle – Boise Weekly

by • February 14, 2016 • No Comments

click to enlargeFLICKR / CORY DOCTOROWflickr / Cory Doctorow
A new method of 3D printing can create human-dimensionsd bone, muscle, and cartilage templates which survive when implanted into animals, researchers report.
“It has been challenging to create human scale tissues with 3D printing for the reason larger tissues need extra
nutrition,” Dr. Anthony Atala of Wake Forest School of Medicine, Winston-Salem, North Carolina told Reuters Health by email.
His team created a system they call “the integrated tissue and organ printing system,” or ITOP for short. ITOP creates a network of small channels which allows for the printed tissue to be nourished after being implanted into a living animal. The researchers created three types of tissue – bone, cartilage, and muscle – and transplanted it into rats and mice.
Five months after implantation, the bone tissue appeared much like to normal bone, deplete with blood vessels and with no dead areas, the research team reported in Nature Biotechnology. Human-dimensionsd ear implants appeared like normal cartilage under the microscope, with blood vessels supplying the outer regions and no circulation in the inner regions (as in native cartilage). The fact which there were viable cells in the inner regions suggested which they had obtained enough nutrition. Results with 3D-printed skeletal muscle were equally astounding. Not just did the implants appear like normal muscle when examined two weeks after implantation, but the implants in addition contracted like immature, developing muscle when stimulated.
“It is frequently frustrating for physicians to have patients obtain a plastic or metal part during surgery knowing which the many replacement may have been the patient’s own tissue,” Dr. Atala said. “The results of this study bring us nearer to the reality of via 3D printing to repair defects via the patient’s own engineered tissue.”
“We are in addition via much like strategies to print solid organs,” he introduced.
Dr. Lobat Tayebi of Marquette University School of Dentistry, Milwaukee, Wisconsin, who has in addition done bioprinting research, told Reuters Health by email, “There are numerous difficulties in bioprinting tissues in terms of robustness, integrity, and (blood vessel supply) of the end product. What is the many admirable of this study is the serious effort to overcome these problems by introducing an integrated tissue-organ printing device (ITOP). This is a big step in the direction of making robust bioprosthetic tissues of any dimensions and shape.”
“I believe this approach, although it has lots of difficulty, can some day be applied for making reliable and robust bioprinted tissues,” she said. “Actual personalized medicine, especially in the tissue regeneration field, is on its way.”

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