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Artist Amy Karle Makes Instructable Manual for a Hand 3D Printed With Stem Cells

Amy Karle likes to combine the body and the biology behind it with technology for her artworks. Her newest work isn’t different.

The artist created a hand-shaped 3D printed scaffold to cultivate stem cells and other tissues around the structure. The 3D printed structure gives the tissue´s regeneration process a base and will shape the form of the tissue.

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Amy designed the scaffold with a trabecular lattice structure best known from real bone structures.

This shape not only provides a structure for the cells to grow along but also provides a pattern that could trigger stem cells to become uniquely bone cells.

The model hand was than 3D printed with Autodesk´s Ember 3D printer with Polyethylene (glycol) Diacrylate (PEGDA) , a hydrogel that reacts with the UV light used by Ember.

After the post processing the scaffold is placed inside a bioreactor to grow the the tissue.

There is an intelligence beyond our understanding in the mystery of life and how the human body is formed. I have always used the body in my work, and create artwork using technology to explore with it means to be human. Over the past few years I have been working with generative art, which is when programming and mathematics defines the rules or features of artwork and creates much of the design on its own once this program is established.

Nature provides the finest examples of generative art – we can look at the golden ratio in plants and humans. I was creating artwork with parametric and generative digital design to create forms, but it felt like there was something I could tap inherent with more mystery and surprises in the real world. So I looked within the body, at how cells articulate into different forms – what makes a cell become a beating heart, skin, or bone.

The Instructable contains of a detailed instructions, pictures and references to build a scaffold yourself.