(OXFORD)

Scientists at one of the world’s best universities have pioneered a way of bioprinting living tissues.

In a breakthrough which could ‘revolutionise regenerative medicine’, the University of Oxford scientists have demonstrated how animal and human tissues can be 3D printed, while the individual cells remain alive and intact. This could potentially support the development of cartilage and ‘complex tissues’.

Dr Alexander Graham, lead author and 3D Bioprinting Scientist at OxSyBio (Oxford Synthetic Biology), said: “We were aiming to fabricate three-dimensional living tissues that could display the basic behaviours and physiology found in natural organisms. To date, there are limited examples of printed tissues, which have the complex cellular architecture of native tissues. Hence, we focused on designing a high-resolution cell printing platform, from relatively inexpensive components, that could be used to reproducibly produce artificial tissues with appropriate complexity from a range of cells including stem cells.”

The research – published in Scientific Reportswas carried out by academics from the Department of Chemistry and the Department of Physiology, Anatomy and Genetics at Oxford and the Centre for Molecular Medicine at Bristol.

Dr Adam Perriman, from the University of Bristol’s School of Cellular and Molecular Medicine, hailed the “potential of this new methodology to impact regenerative medicine globally”.

“The bioprinting approach developed with Oxford University is very exciting, as the cellular constructs can be printed efficiently at extremely high resolution with very little waste,” he added.