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Chinese researchers want to 3D print skin in the next two or three years

The largest human organ is not the brain, the lungs or the liver, it is the skin. Compared to other organs the skin is a pretty simple organ but after skin damage caused by burns or other serious injuries there are nearly always problems to replace the skin or to wait for it to heal. To ensure that there are less problems and better results for the patient’s professor Wu Jun and his team started to work on 3D printed skin.

Professor Wu Jun is the director of the Burns Institute of the Southwester Hospital in Chonqging (China). Together with his research team he wants to 3D print human skin. The team is working on the right “ink” for the skin – according to Wu Jun this is the biggest challenge:

In printing skin, the biggest challenge is the ‘ink.’ We need to find the right material that can be made into a certain form while not damaging its activity

Nevertheless, the professor is convinced that in the next two to three years 3D printed skin will be possible. But he has also said that many other research teams are also working on 3D printed skin and maybe another team will be the first to 3D print human skin. There are also finical interests behind the technology because 3D printed skin could be a big business in the future.

I expect the process to be finalized within two to three years. Many other researchers are at the same stage as us, so we are moving fast to be the first to make this breakthrough.

2011 a group of scientists in America has already started their research on 3D printed skin. Now there are different teams working on the technology, one of them is a partnership between Organovo and L’Oreal.

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