In quite an impressive TED talk, medicine specialist Anthony Atala printed a biocompatible model of a human kidney on stage. Yes, that is as awesome as it sounds. Basically, it means that one day it would be possible to grow organs from the patient’s own tissue, rather than having to rely on donated organs. The organ-printing process makes use of 3D scanners to create an image of the organ, and a tissue sample to seed the printer.
The printer then replicates the tissue layer by layer, to create a new organ, completing the process in about 6 to 7 hours. During the talk, Atala made use of a specially designed printer to create a kidney mold, which while devoid of internal structure and vasculature, got his point across beautifully.