Making earlobe shaped channels using Vitaprint
This week we are reporting on our progress in fabricating freeform perfusable vessel systems in biocompatible hydrogels. We have previously been successful in fabricating 2D branched perfusable structures and simple 3D molded meniscus models from gelatin. Now, we’re presenting a more complex geometrical network of vessels, shaped as the vasculature of an earlobe.
Vascularization is a major challenge in tissue engineering as it currently sets a very restrictive limit on the thickness of tissues that can be fabricated. New approaches will be necessary to achieve major improvements and the co-development of material and technology will play a vital role in this sense. We’re currently devising new protocols to fabricate vessel systems from other hydrogels to make it more versatile and useful for tissue engineering research. Currently structures are possible using gelatin and alginate.