Medtech company 3D prints human heart tissue: 4 things to know

Harrison Cook - Print  | 

Buffalo Grove, Ill.-based Biolife 4D  successfully 3D-printed human cardiac tissue in the form of a patch, according to Verdict.

Here are four things to know:

1. Biolife 4D used a technique called bioprinting, which utilizes living cells to 3D printer biological structures.

2. To make the heart patch, Biolife 4D used a patient's own white blood cells and reprogrammed them to create pluripotent stem cells and cardiac cells.

3. The cardiac patch took days to print, as opposed to the company's original projected time frame of about six to eight months.

4. The company is now focusing on printing individual parts of the heart, such as valves and blood vessels, with the ultimate goal of printing a full heart. Bioprinting holds the potential to create full replacement organs for patients in need of transplants.

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