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Israeli team develops high-speed 3D bioprinter for stem cells

Wed 25 May 2016

3D-printed stem cells

A collaborative project conducted by two Israeli firms has successfully lab-tested a proof of concept 3D bioprinter for stem cells, signalling significant potential for the printing of complex tissues and organs.

Nano Dimensions, an innovative 3D printing startup with expertise in manufacturing electronic printed circuit boards (PCBs), teamed up with biotech firm Accellta to develop a bioprinter that not only creates stem cells, but does so quickly, in large volumes, and at a high resolution.

In a press release, Nano Dimensions CEO Amit Dror noted: “3D printing of living cells is a technology that is already playing a significant role in medical research, but in order to reach its full potential, for the field to evolve further, there is a need to improve printing speeds, print resolution, cell control and viability as well as cell availability and bio-ink technologies.

By combining our high speed, high precision inkjet capabilities with Accellta’s stem cell suspension technologies and induced differentiation capabilities led by a world-renowned group of experienced engineers and scientists, we can enable 3D printing at high resolution and high volumes.”

Itzchak Angel, chairman and CEO of Accellta, also added: “By enabling high precision 3D bioprinting and differentiation of stem cells into required tissues, our combined technologies have the potential to enable vast areas of development. We are very excited about these initial results and what the future holds.”

The announcement today suggested the future formation of a new entity to co-develop the 3D bioprinter solution. The companies do not intend to funnel huge amounts of capital into the project, instead funds will be raised by and for the exclusive use of the joint venture.

According to market research firm IDTechEx, the bioprinting market will rocket over the next ten years from $481 million (approx. £330,000) in 2014 to $6 billion in 2024. It predicts the technology to offer value across a range of clinical applications including drug discovery, testing, cosmetics safety, toxicology, tissue printing, and ‘organs on chips.’

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