One of the more exciting companies within the 3D Printing space is Organovo. The San Diego based company is using 3D printing technology to print live human tissue. It sounds like something out of a science fiction novel, but the company has been making tremendous progress over the last couple of years. Organovo’s ultimate goal is to be able to print out entire functioning human organs. Although such an accomplishment is still many years away, they are already turning heads, and garnering interest from major pharmaceutical companies that are looking to use their bioprinted tissue for pre-clinical trials .
Every year billions of dollars are spent performing pre-clinical testing for drug discovery. These tests usually rely on a variety of methods, most of which are not all that accurate. What Organovo has been working diligently on, has been the development of human tissue samples, specifically liver tissue, aimed towards pre-clinical drug testing and discovery. This week the company announced that they have begun initiating contracts for their patented 3D printed human liver tissue samples, with various pharmaceutical and biotech firms.
Organovo’s Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, Keith Murphy, stated “Organovo has received interest in advance of our planned launch from top 15 pharma company customers, small to midsize pharma companies, biotechnology companies, and private venture capital backed pharmaceutical development firms. The compelling data already generated on the performance of the 3D Human Liver Tissue has driven this interest, we believe, and I’m pleased that our team was able in a short time to accomplish all of the hard work that allowed us to begin signing contracts. We’ll be able to deliver results for proprietary compounds and other needs, while completing the work for fuller product and service launch on our original timeline.”
The company expects to expand their offerings to more clients as the year progresses. The human liver tissue that they are able to print, is capable of surviving long term studies, making them ideal for testing the long term affects of a drug on the human liver. This is a major step towards further monetization of their technology, and will likely allow them to push forward with additional bioprinting applications that they have shown interest in. Discuss this article at the Organovo forum thread at 3DPB.com.
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