PRINT A NEW SET OF OR­GANS

Vancouver Magazine - - 25 Ways To Live Forever - Lucy Hys­lop

For­get guns and shoes: 3D print­ing will soon be tasked with craft­ing or­gans, thanks to Van­cou­ver’s As­pect Biosys­tems. Un­der its catchy slo­gan “Hu­man Tis­sues on De­mand,” the UBC biotech­nol­ogy start-up com­pany has al­ready repli­cated liv­ing hu­man tis­sue through cus­tom-built 3D print­ers. It uses a mi­croflu­idic chip to gen­er­ate a thin gel fi­bre—loaded with liv­ing cells—which is then stacked into a 3D struc­ture layer by layer and in­cu­bated for sev­eral weeks to de­velop into tis­sue, ex­plains Tamer Mo­hamed, As­pect’s co­founder. Mo­hamed adds of the tech­nol­ogy cur­rently used for drug test­ing, “The goal is to cre­ate re­place­ment tis­sue for sur­gi­cal im­plan­ta­tion.” And pos­si­bly a world with­out donors, to boot.—

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