NASA Science Live: Engineering Human Tissue | Summary and Q&A

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June 9, 2021
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NASA
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NASA Science Live: Engineering Human Tissue

TL;DR

Scientists have successfully created thick vascularized human organ tissue in a lab, marking a significant step towards 3D printing functional human organs.

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Questions & Answers

Q: What is the Vascular Tissue Challenge about?

The Vascular Tissue Challenge incentivizes the development of thick, functional tissue with its own blood vessels, which can be used for growing complex tissues and organs.

Q: Why is NASA interested in this technology?

NASA is interested in this technology to support long-duration space missions, understand the effects of radiation, and potentially improve medical treatments on Earth.

Q: What are the limitations in creating new tissue?

The current limitations include creating an environment that supports the cells' growth, integrating the tissues into the body, and scaling up the production of billions of cells required for organ creation.

Q: How could this technology extend our lifespan?

The ability to engineer replacement human organs could significantly improve healthcare, potentially extending lifespans by replacing damaged or failing organs.

Summary & Key Takeaways

  • The Vascular Tissue Challenge aims to create thick, functional tissue from major human organs with their own blood vessels, which is crucial for growing complex tissues and whole organs.

  • Team Winston from Wake Forest Institute for Regenerative Medicine has won NASA's Vascular Tissue Challenge, receiving a $300,000 prize for their innovation.

  • Creating vascularized tissue can have a profound impact on medical advancements and treatments, enabling better understanding of diseases and potentially replacing damaged or diseased organs.

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