The Smart Magazine About Medical Technology Innovations

#30- Innovative Labs

3D Printing Restores Fertility


Researchers at Northwestern University in Chicago used 3D printing to create a bioprosthetic mouse ovary. The printed “scaffold” consisted of filaments of hydrogel made from broken down collagen. Replacing the natural organ and housing transplanted immature eggs, they enabled mice to ovulate, give birth and nurse their offspring. The team overcame a major problem by finding the right gel temperature to ensure structural stability.

The “scaffold” is the internal structure of the ovary. It supports the eggs and cells producing hormones. It also enables vascularization, essential for proper ovulation, hormone circulation and lactation. The ultimate goal is to restore fertility and hormone production in women who had lost the ability to bear children as the result of treatment for childhood cancer.

About the Author

Michael Halpern is a US-born and bred writer with experience in radio. He has lived in southern France for 15 years. Michael is the copy editor of MedicalExpo e-magazine.

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