The birth of the first 3D printed artificial heart is expected to transform organ transplantation

Scientists at Tel Aviv University in Israel used human fat tissue to successfully 3D print an "artificial heart" through a series of magical operations. Although it is just a miniature prototype, it is the first time humans have successfully designed and printed a heart with cells, blood vessels, ventricles, and atria.
This heart can be said to be a scientific breakthrough brought about by the combination of biology, materials science, computer science, and many other disciplines. Specifically, the researchers first removed some adipose tissue from some patients and then separated their "cell" and "non-cell" components. These cells were then used to induce the production of pluripotent stem cells, and non-cellular components such as collagen and glycoprotein were used to synthesize "individualized gels" to serve as "ink" for 3D printing.
The researchers found that the gel composed of its materials provided an excellent development environment for stem cells. In these gels, stem cells can efficiently differentiate into heart cells and endothelial cells. Since all the elements come from the patient itself, the tissue produced by these cells can effectively avoid the rejection problem in xenotransplantation.
The compatibility of biomaterials is the key to eliminating transplant rejection problems. Ideally, biomaterials should have the same biochemical, mechanical, and topological properties as the patient's tissues.
After successfully differentiating the cells, the researchers further began to "3D print" heart tissues and organs using this method. Using CT scanning technology, they outlined the general structure of the heart, which includes the shape of the heart, the size of the atrium and ventricle, and the direction of the main blood vessels. Regarding the network structure of small blood vessels that cannot be obtained by CT scanning, they used a mathematical model to calculate the oxygen consumption in different areas and reasonably allocate the direction of blood vessels. With the assistance of the computer, a more complete blood vessel network structure is obtained for actual printing.
After everything was prepared, they successfully printed out an "artificial heart." Restricted to the current technology, the researchers printed only a "mini-version," the size of which is only as large as that of cherries, about the size of a rabbit's heart. This heart has heart cells and blood vessels, and its structure is complete. At present, the cells in this heart can contract, but they still cannot pump blood like a healthy heart. This is also the main direction of the researchers' next step.
According to the plan, they want to start animal experiments more than a year later to study the feasibility of this artificial heart for organ transplantation. At present, cardiovascular disease is the number one killer of human beings, and heart transplantation is almost the only option for severely ill patients. Because there is no suitable organ, many patients can only wait for the end of life. If this technology can be used for human organ transplantation, it is undoubtedly good news.
Trunnano is one of the world's largest manufacturers of metal 3D printing powders, mainly titanium-based alloys, nickel-based alloys, aluminum-based alloys, iron-based alloys, and cobalt-based alloys. If necessary, please contact: brad @ ihpa .net.

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