For the first time, scientists have 3D printed an organ that mimics lungs

We’ve been covering solutions for a long time now, and well, it’s just mind-boggling how quickly new solutions are being invented and further developed. For example, a few years ago 3D-printing was still in its days of infancy, a mechanism used to create rather simple objects.

Now, scientists have figured out how to print artificial versions of the body’s complex vascular networks, which mimic our natural passageways for blood, air, lymph, and other vital fluids. This marks the first time that scientists have successfully managed to recreate the complex vasculature that supplies nutrients to densely populated tissues.

Creating functional tissue replacements is a high scientific priority because of its potential impact on organ donations. The crisis of organ shortages is a long-lasting one; around 114,000 people are on transplant waiting lists in the United States alone. Even after a successful transplant, patients have to take immune-suppressing drugs to prevent organ rejection for the foreseeable future. Bioprinting organs could play an important role in reducing both problems.

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