That’s what I said – you can print skin. Not print on skin, print the skin itself, cell layer by layer. Bioprinting custom skin grafts means you can customize a graft’s depth to treat severe burns – using the patient’s own cells to avoid rejection.

Kudos to whomever came up with this idea. Seriously: this is bio-DIY to the max. Wow!

Via Armed With Science.

Update: Jason at the Thoughtful Animal just sent me a 2008 minireview on this process by Henmi et al, “New approaches for tissue engineering: three dimensional cell patterning using inkjet technology.” It appears to have been sponsored in part by Epson. :)


  1. #1 Esmeralda
    April 20, 2010

    Oh. My. Awesome. Sauce.

    Mind bending.

  2. #2 doug l
    April 20, 2010

    Thanks for posting that. Astonishing what med tech is accomplishing.
    Interesting that these inventors are seeing the first application for military casualties, and I got the idea the DoD was supporting their research.yes? It certainly would have lots of demand and looked eminently scalable.

  3. #3 John
    April 21, 2010

    Doug, indeed this research is DoD supported. You can learn more about this research at the Armed Forces Institute of Regenerative Medicine:

    John Ohab | Armed with Science

  4. #4 Dave
    April 25, 2010

    Print me a girlfriend. Please?

  5. #5 Charmaine
    April 25, 2010

    This bio tech would bring the world to new level of realism.

  6. #6 Marcus
    April 25, 2010

    Very interesting technology here. One thing I’m wondering though is wouldn’t the skin cells become damaged due to the heating by the copper wire? For a bubble to form and splatter on to the surface it needs to be heated to the boiling point, right? I know there are thermophiles but do skin cells fall under that definition?

  7. #7 it
    April 25, 2010

    this sounds like an idea someone would come up with while stoned. I love it when those kind of ideas work out. Like pickle chips…

  8. #8 Mike
    April 25, 2010

    Printer? More Like Skinter! Sorry couldn’t help myself.

  9. #9 Vetter
    April 26, 2010

    Tie this in with Stem Cell replacement parts and the future looks good. Burn victims will love it. Patients of Plastic Surgeons will pay for its development just to eradicate scars from cosmetic procedures. Win Win

    Oh, Marcus, the ‘boiling point’ is controlled physically to reduce the temperature needed to facilitate a ‘boil’. If the heating container can be made into a exhibit properties of a vacuum, the temperature needed to achieve a ‘boil’ is lowered. Topping this, Cells is tuff, they can take it.

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