San Diego biotech aims to 3D-print, repair organ tissues

Researchers at Cambridge-based Massachusetts Institute of Technology and San Diego-based Organovo are looking into the benefits of 3D-printed tissue, which can eliminate the need for organ donors with enough development, according to The Boston Herald.

To create the tissues, Organovo reworks DNA, RNA and human cells to generate the 3D-printed tissues, according to CEO Taylor Crouch. The tissues can be used to repair damaged organs or improve function to help prolong their lifespan and reduce the need for transplants.

"It’s about personalized and customized treatment," Xuanhe Zhao, PhD, professor of mechanical engineering at MIT, told The Boston Herald. "You wouldn't even need the donors, you use your own cells to regenerate the tissue or organ you need."

Organovo is in the process of testing 3D-printed human liver tissue in mice, but the company faces limitations in manufacturing and clinical trials.

  Mr. Crouch said Organovo hopes to show the 3D-printed tissue technology will provide a cost benefit when compared to the cost of an organ transplant.

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