The vasculature (placement and count of red blood cells) is the one of the biggest challenges facing the replication of an organ. Most organs are comprised of the same blueprint: arterial blood, blood drainage, and the connection of the two through tubular constructs, such as capillaries and vessels. After the succession of biomedical organs and devices replicated via 3D printing, organ replication is speculated to not be far behind. Scientists have discovered the ability to print 3D replicas of cells using sugar. These ‘sugar cells’ are printed using the appropriate materials for the desired outcome. After printing, the sugar is dissolved, leaving the end product in hand. This end product of cells is then used to recreate a pancreas or lung with the exact formats replicated in the initial process.
Lumen is what creates any form of tubular cellulous processes. Lumen is essentially the seed of inter-tubular connections that expand to eventually create what we know of as organs. Lumen set the blueprint of a cell that allows transportation of other cells and elements. Although lumens are initially hollow cavities with the purpose of allowing blood flow, they soon multiply into the creation of an entire system. These systems process materials (blood, glucose, bile) that ultimately assist in the function of the entire body. Typical examples include the inner workings of lungs or a kidney. Each organ determines the chemicals used in the creation and replication of lumens. Factors are dependent upon the environment and usage of the organ. Clearly, the possibilities provided by 3D printing are limitless.
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“3D-bioprinted Blood Vessels Are a Major Step towards Man-made Tissues and Organs | ExtremeTech.” ExtremeTech. N.p., n.d. Web. 01 Aug. 2014.