We first heard about 3D bio-printers in 2009. Such a printer was developed in collaboration with the Australian project firm Invetech and Organovo, and the company of regenerative medicine (San Diego). The device includes two print heads: one for placing human cells, and the other for placing a hydrogel (also called a forest or matrix support). At that time, the developers hoped that the printer could someday be used in the creation of organs for transplant purposes. This week, Organovo announced that it was a little successful in using the device to create the three-dimensional functioning of a person’s liver.
Not so long ago, scientists came to the successful creation of 2D samples of human liver tissue. This sample is one, maximum two thick layers of cells used for research purposes.
According to Organovo CTO, Dr. Sharon Presnell, the new 3D fabric has many advantages. “Firstly, tissues are not just one layer of cells; there are about 20 layers of cells in our tissues, that is, it is still quite thick, ”said Dr. Sharon Presnell. “Secondly, multicellular tissues closely reproduce the various cellular structures that are present in this (or natural) tissue. Finally, our tissue has high cellular reproducibility. "
Liver bio-printed tissue was made from various cell types, including hepatocytes, endothelial cells and liver stellate cells – all of which are key components of the natural liver. After the structure is complete, the tissues remain stable in the test tube for up to 135 hours (much longer than is possible with 2D tissues), they perform the normal functions of the liver, including the production of albumin, fibrinogen and transferrin, and this tissue also supports cholesterol biosynthesis.
As measured, today fabrics are made up to a maximum of 500 microns thick, and with a width of a few millimeters. Organovo believes that they can become invaluable for medical research. Today the company is still engaged in the direction of obtaining full-sized human organs for transformation.
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