Print the Bacon
At first I thought this was an article about ZCorp’s ZPrinter, a printer that prints out physical models directly out of digital datas in hours instead of days. But after reading here and here, it turns out to be a modified inkjet printer to be able to print human skin cells. The idea is to create a replacement skin to treat major skin wounds, or perhaps bones and organs. And it could be ready for clinical trials in five years. Yay!
Scientists expect to eventually build commercial skin printers for hospital use. Doctors would take cells from a patient’s body, multiply them, and suspend them in a nutrient-rich liquid similar to ink. A technician would enter measurements of a patient’s wound into a computer and feed the suspended cells into the printer.
The cells would then be seeded on a plastic tissue scaffold, which provides shape and stability to the new piece of skin as it develops. The scaffold would also anchor the perfectly shaped piece of skin over the wound, once applied, keeping the graft in place until it takes hold.
I’ll print myself an Angelina Jolie.