wollongongA recent post by Ari Armstrong about the wonders of 3D printing applied to the field of medicine concluded, “What’s next we can only imagine.” Now, just a few weeks later, we have an indication. Researchers are on course to print functional, customized human tissues and organs.

On May 3, researchers from the University of Wollongong (Australia) announced that they are likely only a few years away from printing custom body parts and about a decade away from printing organs. Gordon Wallace, director of the University of Wollongong’s ARC Centre of Excellence for Electromaterials Science, stated:

Within a few years, we believe it will be possible to manufacture living tissues like skin, cartilage, arteries and heart valves using cells and biomaterials. Using a patient’s own cells to create this tissue avoids issues of immune rejection. By 2025, it is feasible that we will be able to fabricate complete functional organs, tailored for an individual patient. . . .

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