Scientists at Tel Aviv University have successfully printed the world's first 3D heart using the patient's own cells and biological materials to "fully match the patient's immunological, cellular, biochemical and anatomical properties".
So far, researchers have only been able to write 3D tissues that lack blood vessels.
"This heart is made of human cells and patient-specific biological materials. In our process, these materials act as bioconnection, substances produced from sugars and proteins that can be used for 3D printing of complex tissue models," says lead researcher Tal Dvir in a statement. "People have been able to 3D print the structure of a heart earlier, but not with cells or blood vessels. Our results show the potential of our way of constructing personal tissue and organ composition in the future. "
Describing their work in advanced science, the research group began by taking biopsies of adipose tissue from abdominal structures called omentum in both humans and pigs. The cellular material of the tissue was separated from those who were not and were reprogrammed to become Pluripotent stem cells, "master cells" could make cells from all three body layers with the potential to produce any cell or tissue in the body, then the extracellular matrix – consisting of collagen and glycoproteins – made a hydrogel that was used as the ink. then differentiated to heart t- or endothelial cells (those that line the inner surface of the blood vessel and lymph vessels) to create patient-specific, immunocompatible cardiac patches complete with blood vessels and ultimately a fully bioengineered from "embedded" patient-specific materials.
But promising, the team is quickly reminded that their hearts are not yet ready for human transplantation.
"At this stage, our 3D heart is small, the size of a rabbit's heart," Dvir said. "But larger human hearts require the same technology."
To begin with, creating a human heart would take much longer and require billions of cells – not just millions. Furthermore, the hearts of the heart do not necessarily behave like hearts, which requires the researchers to further develop and "train" them to be like human hearts and to form a pumping ability. Currently, the cells can come together but not work together.
Whatever development is, a massive step forward is for organ transplantation. Heart disease is the leading cause of death in men and women in the United States, with heart transplants being the only treatment available to those with end-stage heart failure. Not only does a lack of donors require the development of new strategies, but creating the hearts associated with a patient's unique biological makeup can prevent the risk of rejection.
"The biocompatibility of engineered materials is critical to eliminating the risk of implant rejection, compromising the success of such treatments," says Dvir. "Ideally, the biomaterial should have the same biochemical, mechanical, and topographical characteristics of the patient's own tissues. Here we can report a simple approach to 3D-printed thick, vascular and perfusible heart tissue that fully matches the immunological, cellular, biochemical and patient anatomical properties. "After" training "the hearts to effectively pump, the team hopes to transplant them into animals for further testing. Cells from a patient's omentum tissue are separated and processed into a personal thermoresponsive hydrogel. The cells are reprogrammed to become pluripotent and then differentiated into cardiomyocytes and endothelial cells prior to encapsulation in the hydrogel to generate the bioinchildren used for printing, biofuels are then printed to manipulate vascular patches and complex cellular structures, advanced science