There are some incredible advances in medicine taking place right now and in a recent article published by Tech Crunch dot com, it discusses the success of Sweden’s Sahlgrenska Academy and Chalmers University of Technology, whom accomplished implanting human cartilage cells in six-week-old baby mice. What does this mean for us? The results mean that eventually we are closer to the goal of 3D-printing body parts.

The researchers worked with a team of plastic surgeons, who implanted the material into the baby mice. The hope is that one day this process could be used to create more natural implants for individuals who have lost body parts due to accidents or diseases, like cancer.

In the article it state, “There is no solution for missing ears,” research lead professor Paul Gatenholm tells TechCrunch. “You have plastic and silicone implants, which you need to put in with a titanium screw. That’s it. The surgical procedure is that you put in cartilage from a rib from the patient and carve. It’s very painful and the outcome is very bad. If we can use cells from the nose and beef it up with stem cells from the patient’s bone marrow or fat, we will be able to print that full 3D structure.”

“Gatenholm adds, hopefully, “It will have a great impact on healthcare for tissue regeneration and implementation. I think the first breakthrough will be of the skin and then the cartilage and then the bone.” Beyond that, the technology could some day also be used for even more complex human parts like organs.”

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