Tuesday, April 16, 2019
Israeli scientists have discovered their ability to create the first "human heart" in the world using 3D printing technology.
The team of scientists at Tel Aviv University say that using this technique can not only synthesize heart tissue, but also blood vessels, which they said happened for the first time. They described it as a "great medical achievement" for the hope of a heart transplant.
Scientists hope this step will pave the way for the creation of appropriate hearts for breeding in human bodies, as well as the formation of tissues that will be used to repair damaged parts of infected hearts.
The hearts the research team can create are small, because they are the size of the hearts of rabbits.
"This is the first time anyone can design and print a full heart full of cells, blood vessels, chambers and heart chambers," said Tal Devere, a leading researcher in the world and led the medical team.
"In the past, scientists were able to use this technique to synthesize the outer heart structure without just cells or blood vessels."
But scientists have said they still have many challenges to face before fully functional hearts become available for breeding within the body of the patient.
The researchers now have to make the created hearts "fully imitate the work" of the true hearts. Cells can now be agreed, but they do not have the ability to pumped so far.
The next step will be the experience of cultivating these hearts in animal models, and the medical team leader hopes to do so within a year.
"Perhaps, within 10 years, printers for members of the best hospitals worldwide will be available, and such operations become routine," he said.
But he said hospitals are likely to start with simpler members of the heart.
According to the World Health Organization, cardiovascular disease is the leading cause of death worldwide, and transplantation is the only option available for patients with advanced diseases.
But the main problem is that the number of donors is limited and many patients die while waiting to grow hearts instead of their sick hearts.
Moreover, if they have a heart, they face the possibility of being rejected by their bodies, the problem that researchers want to overcome.
How is the synthesis process going?
The researchers worked on patients' fat tissue biopsy and used them to develop "ink" or "living organic matter" for use in three-dimensional printing.
The patient's first cardiac tissue is created, and then the heart is fully built.
The use of tissue tissue is important to eliminate any possibility that tissue culture can increase the sensitivity of immune cells leading to rejection of the body, said Tal Dafir.
"Biological compatibility of ingredients is important to get rid of the risk of transplant rejection, which puts the success of such treatments at risk."
He stressed that challenges remain, especially as the cells are expanding so that they have enough tissue to recreate the heart size of the human heart.
Current three-dimensional printers are still limited. Another challenge is to find a way to synthesize all small blood vessels and small capillaries in the heart.
3D printing technology is used in many industries, from homes to guns and pistols.