There is a global shortage of critical organs such as heart, kidney available for lifesaving transplants. Organ printing has been approached as a potential solution to decrease the shortage of organs which leads to countless deaths all around the world. Organs have been successfully 3d printed along with skin and blood vessels. Organ 3D printing is conducted using variety of techniques. Study in biological engineering and bioprinting inspires me the most. Researchers had 3D printed a soft artificial heart and believed that it works a lot like a real one.
It will take few more years for technology to become more advanced to be able to successfully 3d print organs like heart & transplant them in human beings.
The heart is one of the least complicated organs in our body. It doesn’t perform complicated biochemical functions like the liver and kidneys and for this reason heart could be one of the easiest organ to print. The problem is that artificial hearts are made of metal and plastic mechanisms which can be difficult to integrate with tissues and blood , and could lead to damage the other vital organs or parts. The material which is used for bioprinting – bio ink needs to be printable of course , economically cost friendly , safe to implement ,and should be capable of forming the intended structures. There’s a need for tissue vascularisation in the large organs. Without vasculature, nutrients cannot flow. Several 3D bioprinting printing techniques have been developed to create artificial vasculature through which new blood vessels form from pre-existing vessels.
A 3D printer has already created human muscles and tissues that could actually replace real ones. The real goal is to successfully 3d bioprint and transplant an artificial organ to a human being. Bioprinting of critical organs involve a lot of crucial challenges. The 3d printers could significantly help in this process to overcome the challenges but it’s difficult to say when these 3d bioprinting techniques will be approved as safe to use for human transplants.