Israeli scientists 3D print “world-first” complete heart with human tissue

April 18, 2019

Heart disease is the primary cause of death in the US – most patients can only opt for a life-saving transplant, and donors are few. Scientists Tel Aviv University (TAU), Israel, have possibly solved this dilemma by producing the first-ever complete 3D printed heart using human tissue – a breakthrough in regenerative medicine.

Lead scientist Professor Tal Dvir of TAU’s School of Molecular Cell Biology and Biotechnology, has said, “While this is the first successfully engineered and printed heart complete with cells, blood vessels, ventricles and chambers, the cells need to form a functioning pumping ability to be of use.”

The rodent-sized 3D printed heart was made from human cells and patient-specific biological materials – the “bioinks” hydrogel originated from fatty tissues extracted from human test subjects, which can be used for 3D printing of complex tissue models. Dvir stressed the importance of the heart’s being made with a patient’s own cells in order to eliminate the risk of implant rejection in a transplant. The potential for engineering personalised tissue could one day render organ donation obsolete and instead serve as an efficient organ replacement method in transplants


Category: Technology & Devices

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