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Artificial Blood Vessels Printed With 3D Laser Pinter

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Artificial Blood Vessels Printed With 3D Laser Pinter

Artificial blood vessels printed with a 3D laser printer…

German researchers have developed a new technique that can be use to print functional artificial blood vessels using a 3D laser printer and intense laser impulses. The new method utilizes a technique known as multiphoton polyermerisation, which enables scientist to create the complex network of capillaries needed for an organ to function.

The process starts by printing synthetic polyermers which are coated with biomolecules. These biomolecules allow natural cells to grow on the polymer scaffolding; almost eliminating the risk of rejection.

fraunhofer artificial blood vessels 3d laser printer 550x309 Artificial Blood Vessels Printed With 3D Laser Pinter

Artificial Blood Vessels Created With 3D Printer

Image Credit: Fraunhofer IOF, 2011.

The researchers then blast short intense laser impulses at the material which transforms it into an elastic solid that can easily be manipulated to create that highly complex network of tubes needed to carry blood.

Printing organs with a 3D laser printer is not a new idea, advancements in technology now allow scientist to print body parts quickly and inexpensively, however one of the many problems that plague the process of a successful transplantation of 3D printed organs, is creating working blood vessels to provide the vital nutrients.

The researchers hope that their new method will hopefully turn the idea of printing functional organs into a viable solution for those on an organ donor waiting list.


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