Beautifully creepy, 3D printed synthetic tissue.

No es una gastrula. This is synthetic.

No es una gastrula. This is synthetic.

A custom-built programmable 3D printer can create materials with several of the properties of living tissues, Oxford University scientists have demonstrated”. — Via 3D printer can build synthetic tissues 

The following 8 second video shows this lifeless object behaving like a lotus flower–with yellow and blue hues:

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52 thoughts on “Beautifully creepy, 3D printed synthetic tissue.

  1. This is very interesting, I hope they keep advancing this technology because as the article said it could be used to replace or fix tissue damage. Also what I find more amazing is how did they make a machine with such precision as to make all of the shapes that are shown and to program them in such a specific way that through osmosis they can make the shapes bend and twist around.

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    • The physical properties of fluids—water included—are pretty well known by biologists, chemists, and physicists. They just have to remix what they know into the response you just saw; artificial tissue that mimics one of the most important requirements for life: response to stimuli.

      This breakthrough is a pretty big deal.

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  2. The idea of printing anything your body need is so sci-fi! Although it sounds so far away I don’t think we’re to far away to printing skin to replace damaged skin

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  3. It is impressive how this kind of advancement in technology, is what allows advancement in human’s knowledge in the many fields.

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  4. According to an article published by CBS NEWS;
    “The hope is that this new technology will help to be a building block for delivering drugs to where they are needed in the body or replacing damaged human tissues. Using these synthetic cells will eliminate many problems associated with other tissue replacements as they are completely artificial so they do not replicate on their own, and do not need stem cells.”

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  5. I’m looking forward to the ways in which 3D printing will revolutionize science. One week ago, scientists created this synthetic tissue. This week, scientists have used 3D printing to create a miniaturized liver that functions almost like the real thing. (Source: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-2313910/The-tiny-lab-grown-livers-perform-like-real-thing–pave-way-human-sized-organs-transplant.html)
    Soon enough, the task of finding organ donors will be replaced by the synthetic production of organs.

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  6. I couldn’t imagine how amazing would it be for these advances in the medical field. But, my question is, would the human body be able to successfully adhere these foreign materials (referring to the biologically engineered organs, bones, etc.) making it part of its complex system?

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    • With every 5 or 10 years of research, investigation, design, etc., technologies get more efficient. Take the example of computing, which has progressed in terms of power and information processing, while greatly diminishing in size and costs. And that is precisely the key in this type of scientific endeavor (how to make the interaction between organic and artificial matter more seamless). The smaller and more efficient the design of digital technologies (nanotechnology) get, singularity—roughly put: the ‘fusion’ between man and machine—will become a matter of science fact, instead of science fiction. Now, what would that mean for the human experience? Time will tell.

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  7. It’ll be amazing, but also strangely funny when someone loses a finger or something of the sort and they can just go get a brand new finger as if it never happened.

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  8. This reminds me of the movie Starship Troopers. I wonder if they can recreate an organ. This is truly amazing. It could help so many people. My only question is: Can 3D printing be harmful to the body. I mean what if the body rejects it?

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    • Organ rejection has to do a lot with blood types (review the blood section 46.2 on your textbook). I believe that we are still a few decades away before incorporating these technologies into our bodies.

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  9. Robot tissue, huh, soon all humans will be cyborgs if we replace our human body structure with technology. Though it will help people with leprosy.

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  10. It would be amazing if we could actually do that in the near future but, as Adrian said, it would be a bit strange because we would be basically living robots.

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    • I encourage you to watch Blade Runner, directed by Ridley Scott. It deals with many questions about the boundaries of humanity—and reality. The movie is based on the novel Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep, by Phillip Kindred Dick.

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  11. Its amazing how that works but, as Andrea said, it will be a little weird because we will be like living robots who will depend on technology in order to survive.

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  12. Its amazing how scientists can make a part of the body with sintetic tissue its interesting how science can help us live more longer or in a healthy way.

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  13. if there is 3D printed synthetic tissue, o cant wait to see i human with synthetic tissue or even a 3d printed human. can you imagen?

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  14. I believe it is so cool and a bit scary of the thought that techonoly has becomed so advanced that human parts can be replaced with such knowledge and technology. Im not saying that I am afraid of advancing in society but what this knowledge could end up doing, like some students commented, what if there is a complete I-Human? The strength and advantages it will have in society? The human mind is very complex and while this is a very amazing step in history, it can also be a very scary one in my opinión.

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  15. Its interesting how back then the printing press was one of the biggest inventions of man kind and now it is so advance that maybe in the future they will invent 3D printing. Technology is just so advanced mow that it amazes me. I’ve never imagined we would get so far in technology

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  16. I think this is a great breakthrough in technology. This is due because if like Carolina Scalley said and put in the website of the synthetic tissue, if scientists can make every organ in the body synthetic it could save a lot of lives. What I mean by this, imagine if a person has skin cancer, then it could happen that this synthetic tissue with time could cure the skin cancer of the person or it could be replaced with this synthetic tissue. As well as, the synthetic liver if it were to have cancer and had to be taken out because it does not work anymore then the synthetic liver could replace the liver with cancer and a lot of lives could be saved. In my opinion, this is huge for us!!!

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    • I believe there is artificial hepatic tissue—or biotechnologically enhanced livers—in the works.

      But I encourage you to do the research—via Google—, and confirm if my Friday night speculation is correct.

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    • Imagine a surgeon that treats burn victims. Remember what tissue is: many cells working together for a single goal.

      Imagine a cosmetic surgeon replacing damaged epithelial tissue with a 3D printed one.

      There are many possible applications for this type of invention.

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  17. This blew my mind! If we keep this up we might be able to rebuild burned tissues or rebuild tissue that has been radioactive thanks to lightning

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  18. Wow everyday technology keeps on getting better, I hope they keep on working on this because it can repair damaged tissues

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  19. Wow that is going to help alot instead of waiting a cut to cure we can try to use that tissue for the cut

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  20. Wow! It is one of the best things created and it will do a lot more in the future. I hope scientists can make it clone someone. It would be really cool!

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  21. This is really interesting and as Jorge says technology is getting better day after day and helping our daily life in many ways in this case it helps us repare damaged tissues.

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  22. If we keep advancing at such rate it wont be long before our problems would be solved using a 3d printer. I just imagine it creating everything from art, organs and food!

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  23. 3D printing although sounds like a really good idea, i don’t think its gona be around to see its golden years just think about it do you think that major multi billion droller company’s are gona let you steal their market what happens when you can just print everything. companies and small businesses go out of business. this could ultimately be the defeat of capitalism so do i think 3D printing is awesome and eficient yeah but do i think its gona reach it full potential and make everything available to us no.

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    • People are very upset with the actual mecanisms that power globalization. Case in point: 2008 crisis.

      So I believe that now is as good time as any to 3D print everything that we can, cutting through the predatory practices of huge corporations. As I’ve said before: I’m cautiously optimistic about 3D printing; I don’t wan’t to be a 3D printing fanboy.

      But I hope it catches on.
      Creativity will bloom.
      Altruism instead of Austerity.

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  24. This incvention is amaiizing!! 3D printing will eventually lead to synthetic production of organs in a near future for humans.

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  25. 3d printing can also help us because of our education. It helps us learn how every single on of our tissues work!!

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  26. This printer may lead to bigger things in the future. First we are copying things that have characteristics of tissue but will after this may we be abel to copy the real tissue? If we could then it would mean a huge advancement for us humans since we would keep on going and we ay be able to copy all different types of tissues which would help biomedical sciences and biology in many ways we may be able to create all type of tissues to help of type of patients with their problems and diseases. I see the potential this printer brings and what I have stated before I think will be a great and productive step for mankind. And not only do i think this but also Professor Hagan Bayley stated:“We don’t know if, in the long term, those cells would proliferate in the body and cause problems. We’re making very simple materials that can mimic tissues but don’t use living cells.” which means he also thinks the same way as I do but he looked at the consequences that may come to pass.
    Here is an article that has the same thoughts: http://articles.latimes.com/2013/apr/04/science/la-sci-sn-faux-synthetic-tissue-3d-printer-self-assembling-20130404

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    • Bioengineering has advanced a lot in the last two decades. We have been able to mimic the physiology of the cell membrane. And that is a big deal:

      “Lipid bilayers are formed by two rows of molecules that each have a hydrophobic, water-repelling side and a hydrophilic, water-loving side. They’re crucial to the existence of cells: In cell membranes, the hydrophobic tails of each layer face inward, creating the inner layer of the cell membrane, and the water-loving heads point outward.”

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