PARIS — The 3D printing revolution promises to change the very way products are manufactured and sold, across a vast array of sectors. Inevitably this has sparked a race to directly print living cells of human beings. This technology is now available in the US and Japan, dubbed 3D bioprinting, with wide-eyed investors flocking to the market.
Now a French company, led by Fabien Guillemot, has recently developed the first laser 3D bioprinter in the world. "Before our discovery, the 3D bioprinter ran mostly on living ink. Using a laser permits to obtain higher concentrated cell inks which improve the cells communication."
The researcher admits that for the moment he is not able to bio-print an entire arm. "In vitro, we made pieces of human skin and cornea. In vivo, we printed pieces of bones on a living mouse. For now, the most interesting according to the pharmaceutical laboratories is to use print pieces of human skins to test new molecules. It could sign the end of the animal experimentations."
In the future, 3D bioprinting could revolutionize the medical world by allowing a totally individualized medicine based on the genetic heritage of each patient. That technology could allow for example, the production of artificial transplants and decrease the risk of graft rejection.
In this following video, Christopher Barnatt, an associate professor of strategy and future studies at Nottingham University Business School explains how 3D bioprinting could change our lives.