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Researchers looking to print living cells in 3D

Darren Murph
10.15.07
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Inkjet printers have long been used to print out all sorts of unusual goods, and while we've heard of scientists utilizing said technology to print stem cells, engineers are now exploring ways "to print 3D structures of cells." According to Paul Calvert, a materials scientist at the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth, printing out these cells in three dimensions "is like going from a black-and-white to a full-color [TV]," and he also states that moving the process forward could help "unravel the mysteries of cell-to-cell communication and, perhaps in the distant future, manufacture human organs from scratch." Notably, it was even suggested that the technique could potentially be used to "print out miniature organs for medical tests such as drug toxicity," and in an ideal world, to crank out "implantable human organs on demand."

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