Only a fraction of drug candidates that begin pre-clinical testing are ever approved for human use. The low success rate can be partly attributed to the differences in response between humans and the animal models currently used for testing.
Parallel to the development of 3D printing and additive manufacturing techniques using polymers and metals, another set of novel techniques has been developed that can print living biological cells. By encapsulating cells inside a gel, complex 3D structures can be printed with cells suspended throughout the structure. The cells grow and multiply within the structure, creating their own matrix and forming tissues. By using organ-specific cells generated from pluripotent stem cells, it should be possible to bioprint 3D organ-specific micro-tissues that replicate the response and functions of a human organ, but on a much smaller scale. These could be used for testing the response of human cells to drugs.
Enjoy our FREE content!
Log in or register to read this article in full and gain access to The Medicine Maker’s entire content archive. It’s FREE and always will be!
Login if you already created an account
Or register now - it’s free and always will be!
You will benefit from:
- Unlimited access to ALL articles
- News, interviews & opinions from leading industry experts
- Receive print (and PDF) copies of The Medicine Maker magazine