Prototype 3D printed pancreas aimed at eventual clinical transplantation

Celprogen Inc. (Torrance, CA, USA) has announced the successful 3D printing of a human pancreas using flexible polylactic acid and seeded with adult human pancreatic stem cells, which they hope has potential for clinical transplantation.

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Celprogen Inc. (Torrance, CA, USA) has announced that the company has successfully 3D printed a pancreas, fabricated using a flexible polylactic acid (PLA) material scaffold populated with adult human pancreatic stem cells. The company hopes that this replacement organ approach could one day be used for pancreatic transplants, which could ease the shortage in donor organs and provide a solution for diseases such as diabetes and pancreatic cancer.

The company 3D printed a scaffold using a flexible PLA, coated it with ECM and then seeded it with two types of human adult pancreatic stem cells. The 3D print was reduced from an adult 18 year old pancreas to approximately a fifth of original size, and the company believes that the structure they have created may allow the stem cells to differentiate into an adult functional pancreas.

The 3D printed replacement panaceas for human transplantation may not quite be palpable as it is very far from the clinical setting at present, but it is certainly an interesting development in the field. Notably, Celprogen is currently in the process of validating a 3D printed PLA heart, which it plans to use for testing cardiotoxicity of newly developed drugs.


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Alexandra Thompson

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