Researchers have certainly been able to make huge strides over the decades, living and working in the 2D paradigm—along with relying on testing and experimenting using basic devices like the petri dish; however, the ability to engineer and 3D print (or bioprint) tissue has expanded resources for scientists exponentially. Now, Tel Aviv University (TAU), via its technology transfer company Ramot, with Bayer Pharmaceuticals to test drugs on 3D-printed heart tissue.
While there is a long list of the advantages in bioprinting, the ability to cut out experimenting on lab animals is definitely a change for the better too.
“In a petri dish, all the cells line up in 2D, and it’s only one type of cell” said Prof. Tal Dvir of TAU, the scientist responsible for developing the world’s first working 3D printed heart. “In contrast, our engineered tissues are 3D printed, and therefore better resemble real heart tissues,” she added.
The agreement between Bayer and TAU states that their collaboration will involve the development and testing of an in vitro cardiotoxicity platform in Dvir’s Laboratory for Tissue Engineering and Regenerative Medicine. This takes drug testing to a new level—and true reality with tissue engineering.
“Our printed tissues contain cardiac muscle, blood vessels and the extracellular matrix which connects the different cells biochemically, mechanically and electrically. Moving away from petri dishes to 3D printed tissues could significantly improve drug tests, saving precious time and money with the hope of producing safer and more effective medication,” said Dvir.
“Our end goal is to engineer whole human hearts, including all the different chambers, valves, arteries and veins – the best analogue of this complex organ – for an even better toxicological screening process.”
This new research is, in fact, an extension of previous work using 3D-printed cardiac patches to regenerate hearts in patients suffering from cardiovascular disease. The patches served as a prime example of the potential for patient-specific treatment as the patches were made with fatty tissue removed from the patients themselves.
During the research project, they were also able to 3D print “comprehensive structures,” including an entire heart. Other scientists around the world have produced studies regarding bioprinted heart tissue, novel bioinks, and the development of scaffold-free cardiac constructs.
As researchers expect to be 3D printing patient-specific human organs in the next decade or so, medicine will be transformed as patients no longer have to worry about waiting lists—and dying during that extensive time—or issues with transplant rejection.
Ramot has also recently licensed their technology to Matricelf, a spin-off fabricating patient-specific spinal-cord implants.[Source / Images: The Jerusalem Post]
Subscribe to Our Email Newsletter
Stay up-to-date on all the latest news from the 3D printing industry and receive information and offers from third party vendors.
You May Also Like
CELLINK Bioprinter Enables Bioprinted Hair Follicles for Skin Regeneration and More
In a landmark achievement, researchers at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in New York have successfully 3D-printed hair follicles in lab-grown human skin tissue, marking a significant advancement in the field of...
Iowa Demolishes Its First 3D Printed Home
In May 2023, the city of Muscatine, Iowa embarked on an ambitious plan to construct 3D printed homes. The weekend before Thanksgiving, the first such home was demolished. This project,...
BICO’s Revival: A Fresh Era with Maria Forss at the Helm
Swedish biotech company BICO (STO: BICO) has been making waves in the industry recently. Ever since Maria Forss assumed the role of CEO in November 2023, the company seems to...
3D Printing Webinar and Event Roundup: November 26, 2023
Things are getting busy again in terms of 3D printing webinars and events! This week is the RSNA annual meeting, the World Manufacturing Forum, and more. HP is holding an...
Upload your 3D Models and get them printed quickly and efficiently.