By modifying an ink jet printer and growing skin cells from a patient’s body, an Army research lab has developed an amazing treatment for severe burns: printing new skin.
Once the patient’s skin cells are in a sterile ink cartridge, a computer uses a three dimensional map of the wound to guide the printing.
“The bio-printer drops each type of cell precisely where it needs to go,” explains Kyle Binder, a biomedical scientist at the Armed Forces Institute of Regenerative Medicine‘s Wake Forest lab. “The wound gets filled in and then those cells become new skin.”
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