A Startup Will Print Animal Muscle Tissue in Zero Gravity in 3D

The International Space Station will host a powerful and innovative 3D printer capable of printing muscle tissue of animals at zero gravity, for future biomedical research in space.

The Russian biotechnology research laboratory, 3D Bioprinting Solutions, has just announced plans to collaborate with scientists from the United States and Israel to deliver muscle tissue biomaterials to the International Space Station as part of a microgravity 3D microprotection experiment.

This experiment will be carried out with the Organ-Avt 3D bioprinter, which was already delivered to the International Space Station last December to carry out these experiments where live tissues will be printed in space.

Zero-gravity conditions allow 3D-printed organs and tissues to mature at faster speeds. This printer will also allow scientists to study how living organisms are affected by long flights in outer space. The printer, which has already proved to be a success, has been able to produce the thyroid of a mouse in full space.

In view of the future, it is expected that a bone tissue will be printed by August of this year, and by 2020 the bioprinter will be updated to allow more complex experiments in the form of tubular structures that can be printed: renal canal, urethra, blood vessels, etc ..., in line with the creation of the first 3D printed heart.

Organs are easier to print in space than on Earth, since they are more likely to collapse here. The muscles, blood vessels and other complex tissues that scientists plan to print will remain in space, where they will be examined over time to help reveal the long-term effects of space travel on humans.