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Wake Forest Researchers Swap Skin Grafts For Cell Spraying

timothy posted more than 4 years ago | from the they-probably-getcha-on-the-refills dept.

Biotech 123

TigerWolf2 writes with this excerpt from a Reuters story carried by Yahoo: "Inspired by a standard office inkjet printer, US researchers have rigged up a device that can spray skin cells directly onto burn victims, quickly protecting and healing their wounds as an alternative to skin grafts. ... Tests on mice showed the spray system, called bioprinting, could heal wounds quickly and safely, the researchers reported at the Translational Regenerative Medicine Forum."

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Jews (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31782062)

How many shekels is a Palestinian life worth to you fucking kikes??

I hope someone invades your country and treats you the same way you treat the dark skinned natives you exterminate.

interesting concept (-1, Offtopic)

LiquidCoooled (634315) | more than 4 years ago | (#31782074)

this is an interesting concept.
it would be a novel alternative to implants for ladies.

Re:interesting concept (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31782198)

Instead of implants you are suggesting spraying on an inch or two of skin onto the breast? What would 2 inch thick skin feel like? And what about the nipple?

Re:interesting concept (1)

CorporateSuit (1319461) | more than 4 years ago | (#31782966)

What would 2 inch thick skin feel like

like an enormous birthmark.

Re:interesting concept (1)

toastar (573882) | more than 4 years ago | (#31782212)

Does it make me tree hugger to feel bad for the rats they must have used to test this.

I mean you'ld have to be a bit sadistic to want to burn living animals for a living.

Re:interesting concept (1)

TooMuchToDo (882796) | more than 4 years ago | (#31782230)

I mean you'ld have to be a bit sadistic to want to burn living animals for a living.

Or just care about helping your own species.

Re:interesting concept (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31783628)

So inflicting agony on a creature is fine, as long as it's to help someone else? You should come visit me, I've got some stuff I want to try that'll help my partner out. Don't count on going home again...

Re:interesting concept (2, Insightful)

spazdor (902907) | more than 4 years ago | (#31784030)

That's a great point. Humans are exactly like mice.

Re:interesting concept (1)

Random Destruction (866027) | more than 4 years ago | (#31784160)

Can I borrow your dog?

Re:interesting concept (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31784754)

If it is going to save a human life, then yes, you can "borrow my dog".

ps: actually cat, I don't have a dog.

Re:interesting concept (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31785000)

Aren't scientists the ones pushing that we're basically just intelligent animals? A bunch of B.S., obviously. But it's still okay to breed generation upon generation of innocent animal to suffer some of the most excruciating deaths and tortures for the sake of making it convenient for us after 5 years of testing. If we're all just a bunch of animals, and the end of life is just a great nothingness, we should just accept the fact that we're going to die anyway and take it like the animal we are. I do not share this belief, and instead, have compassion. If I had the choice between having my legs amputated, or having them saved due to the deaths and long tortures of thousands of helpless animals, I would go with the former. Heck, before we even did all of this the world seemed to get along just fine.

Re:interesting concept (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31785810)

we should just accept the fact that we're going to die anyway and take it like the animal we are.

We should have and use compassion but not use intelligence to try to expand our lifecycles if we can? You're an idiot.

Re:interesting concept (1)

jameskojiro (705701) | more than 4 years ago | (#31782276)

Those are good jobs to keep the psychopaths out htere from making that their hobby, make it thir job and they become a productive and safe member of society, or they turn into "Barry the Chopper"....

Re:interesting concept (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31782606)

Ixnay on the ArryBay the Opperchay. We put a lid on the irthbay ertificatecay but if they get wind of the Opperchay thing we'll have a hell of a time containing the fallout.

Re:interesting concept (2, Funny)

LostAlaska (760330) | more than 4 years ago | (#31782300)

Yeah, it would be a little disconcerting if during the meeting where they were trying to figure out an impartial way to decide who gets that job of burning the mice and the new lab tech jumps up furiously waving his hands saying "oh, me, me, choose me, pretty pretty please, choose me!" If that ever does happen I'd have a 2 part questionnaire for him to fill out. Question 1, do you like horribly violent movies like Saw or Hostel? (Y or N) Question 2, do you like musicals? (Y or N) if he says yes to both... serial killer. thank you venn diagrams.

Re:interesting concept (3, Interesting)

FooAtWFU (699187) | more than 4 years ago | (#31782500)

My little sister actually had a summer internship with the Wake Forest Center for Regenerative Medicine. One of the things she would do is basically give puncture wounds to mice. After this experience, she apparently didn't want to be a researcher anymore.

Re:interesting concept (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31782560)

Re:interesting concept (1)

snspdaarf (1314399) | more than 4 years ago | (#31783132)

Yeah, but come on. Who wouldn't like to have "Administered puncture wounds to mice" on their resume?

Re:interesting concept (1)

Lemmeoutada Collecti (588075) | more than 4 years ago | (#31784426)

Sounds like it might be almost as effective as "Administered the death penalty to enemies of the state"

Re:interesting concept (1)

skam240 (789197) | more than 4 years ago | (#31784242)

While I get the idea of putting the dirty work no one wants to do off on the intern it's really a shame that it discourages people from going into medical research. Maybe these companies should look towards their future rather than the comfort level of their current employees (in terms of pawning off the shit jobs on interns).

Re:interesting concept (1)

aquila.solo (1231830) | more than 4 years ago | (#31784518)

On the other hand, someone has to do those jobs. It's probably better in the long run that she found out she doesn't care for it now, rather than after she's put in all the time and money to get through med school.

Re:interesting concept (1)

Jah-Wren Ryel (80510) | more than 4 years ago | (#31784878)

On the other hand, someone has to do those jobs.

Then find someone suited to the work. Society turns its nose up at people who torture animals and pull the wings off of flies, but a job like this sounds like a win-win situation - the sociopathic tendencies get directed somewhere useful where they won't harm anyone and regular people don't get turned off from high-level science just because they can't stomach some of the grittier parts.

Re:interesting concept (1)

Runaway1956 (1322357) | more than 4 years ago | (#31785018)

Gotta disagree. The "scientist" who can't handle the "grittier" parts isn't really a scientist. If you're doing a thesis about pulling the wings off of flies, and you've never actually pulled the wings off of flies, then you're a fraud, plain and simple.

Re:interesting concept (1)

Jah-Wren Ryel (80510) | more than 4 years ago | (#31785404)

Gotta disagree. The "scientist" who can't handle the "grittier" parts isn't really a scientist. If you're doing a thesis about pulling the wings off of flies, and you've never actually pulled the wings off of flies, then you're a fraud, plain and simple.

Except that's now what the research is about. They do research about how to heal the fly or re-attach the wings or make prosthetic wings. You might as well argue that any research on rats is fraudulent if the researcher didn't build the cage the rats are kept in.

Re:interesting concept (1)

aquila.solo (1231830) | more than 4 years ago | (#31785776)

Then find someone suited to the work.

Exactly. I don't disagree with you. The GGP was talking about their sister who decided she wasn't a fan of research after having to do some of the crap work involved. Someone suggested that it was unfortunate to make the interns do this up front. My response was simply that it was better for her to learn this (that she was in the wrong field) now, rather than after she had gone through years of school and all the attendant costs.

And as an earlier reply stated, if one can't handle the grittier parts of $CAREER, they're probably not cut out for $CAREER. On the other hand, the rest of the benefits of $CAREER may easily outweigh the crap. The weighting functions are completely individual and change over time.

Of course the sister shouldn't have felt obligated to continue on in that if she didn't feel suited for it. There are plenty of career options out there. There's almost no reason to "suffer" through a career you don't like. One exception would be larger responsibilities (e.g. feeding your children, paying debts, etc.) and whatever it is you want to do doesn't pay enough to meet them.

Re:interesting concept (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | more than 4 years ago | (#31786018)

Society turns its nose up at people who torture animals and pull the wings off of flies, but a job like this sounds like a win-win situation - the sociopathic tendencies get directed somewhere useful where they won't harm anyone

Unfortunately, it doesn't really work this way. Instead, they're just going to become more sociopathic (or whatever) because they're reinforcing these behaviors.

Re:interesting concept (1)

Jedi Alec (258881) | more than 4 years ago | (#31786674)

If that ever does happen I'd have a 2 part questionnaire for him to fill out. Question 1, do you like horribly violent movies like Saw or Hostel? (Y or N) Question 2, do you like musicals? (Y or N) if he says yes to both... serial killer. thank you venn diagrams.

Ow, come on. Surely you wouldn't pass up on the opportunity to do a Voight-Kampff? If the lab tech turns out to be batshit crazy...you'll have to fire him, with all the hassle that goes along. If you can convince him that you are batshit insane...he might leave by himself. Either that, or he'll think it's some kind of twisted bonding experience...

Re:interesting concept (1)

X0563511 (793323) | more than 4 years ago | (#31782378)

If it makes you feel better, I'm sure they can anesthetize the mice. Hell, for this purpose they could breed a braindead and pain-immune strain if it was really that big an issue.

("lab rat" is a misnomer)

Re:interesting concept (1)

Spy der Mann (805235) | more than 4 years ago | (#31782428)

I mean you'ld have to be a bit sadistic to want to burn living animals for a living.

I think I can imagine who did those experiments... [geekologie.com]

Re:interesting concept (5, Insightful)

Posting=!Working (197779) | more than 4 years ago | (#31782586)

Feeling bad about the rats is fine, it's normal.

But it's disingenuous to say they want to burn animals for a living. What they do for a living is try to build a device that could save many lives and help many more reduce their suffering. They are required to test them on animals before humans, it's part of the job. It's not a part of the job they like, but it's necessary so they do it. Could there be a sadistic few? Sure, but it's unlikely. There are far easier and better paid jobs that allow you to be sadistic to animals than research assistant at a lab. Rats are cheap, you can buy or even catch all you like. Getting your PhD to satisfy your sadism toward rats is taking things a bit far.

I would guess that most of them feel bad for the rats as well. But they can justify it with what they consider a higher purpose, reducing death and suffering. It might not be justifiable to you, but it is to them. It doesn't mean they like doing it.

And I respect your opinion if you don't think it's worth it. Just please recognize that both sides of the argument have merit, and don't assume those that think differently than you on the issue are amoral or hate animals, but probably only disagree with you over which is more important.

Re:interesting concept (2, Interesting)

HungryHobo (1314109) | more than 4 years ago | (#31783648)

I once had a fascinating talk with a girl who worked at one of those labs and was given the job of killing the mice before they're analyzed.

Apparently in that lab it was the job they gave to all the newbies when they first arrived.

Re:interesting concept (1)

HungryHobo (1314109) | more than 4 years ago | (#31783670)

To clarify not one of the labs in TFA, just a lab where they used mice for some experiments.

Re:interesting concept (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31783890)

Feeling bad about the rats is fine, it's normal.

But it's disingenuous to say they want to burn animals for a living. What they do for a living is try to build a device that could save many lives and help many more reduce their suffering. They are required to test them on animals before humans, it's part of the job. It's not a part of the job they like, but it's necessary so they do it. Could there be a sadistic few? Sure, but it's unlikely. There are far easier and better paid jobs that allow you to be sadistic to animals than research assistant at a lab. Rats are cheap, you can buy or even catch all you like. Getting your PhD to satisfy your sadism toward rats is taking things a bit far.

I would guess that most of them feel bad for the rats as well. But they can justify it with what they consider a higher purpose, reducing death and suffering. It might not be justifiable to you, but it is to them. It doesn't mean they like doing it.

And I respect your opinion if you don't think it's worth it. Just please recognize that both sides of the argument have merit, and don't assume those that think differently than you on the issue are amoral or hate animals, but probably only disagree with you over which is more important.

Feeling bad about a society that condones the killing of innocent humans (abortion) is not ok?

At the risk of triggering Godwin's Law ... (2, Interesting)

Ungrounded Lightning (62228) | more than 4 years ago | (#31784162)

They are required to test them on animals before humans, it's part of the job. It's not a part of the job they like, but it's necessary so they do it.

At the risk of triggering Godwin's Law I feel I must point out that Animal Rights applied to a medical experiment context is what led the NAZIs, in about three steps, to medical experiments on concentration camp inmates.

Step 1: To avoid experiments on animals the experiments were performed on "mentally defective" humans - i.e. inmates of mental hospitals, initially those who were believed to be so brain-damaged or mentally deficient that they were less aware than animals.

Step 2: For politically convenient reasons, propaganda campaigns spread the idea that certain classes of people were subhuman - and by extension sub-animal: Jews, Gypsies, Communists, Anarchists, Labor Unionists, Gays, ...

Step 3: Large numbers of the classes in Step 2. were, for the convenience of the war effort, incarcerated in concentration/labor camps (where their assignment was mainly to be out of the way, and dying was a "good" way to accomplish this). At this point, being used in medical experiments was a way to complete that assignment and contribute to "humanity" in the process...

The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich is a very scary read. It shows that the NAZI movement started out with pretty much the full set of New Age Counterculture "virtues" (mysticism, animal rights, vegitarianism, body-beautiful health fads, back-to-nature, non-hierarchical consensus decision making, ...) and how these ideas coevolved into what now are considered such monsters that even looking at what they were like is considered anathema.

(Another example: Consensus decision-making evolves into totalitarianism in the presence of the normal fraction of psychopaths. First diversity and dissent paralyze group action. Then social pressures for conformity are developed to break the deadlock. These grow to be nearly irresistible. Then an individual or small group withholds consent except when the rest of the population does what they want. Finally the population follows their new "leaders" automatically, since that's what will finally happen anyhow.)

Re:interesting concept (1)

Maxo-Texas (864189) | more than 4 years ago | (#31782636)

If you own snakes, then you feed them a lot of mice too.
Some folks kill the mice first-- some folks don't.

Re:interesting concept (4, Interesting)

Jimbookis (517778) | more than 4 years ago | (#31782730)

It's already been pioneered, done and patented by Fiona Woods here in Australia http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fiona_Wood [wikipedia.org] . But we all know the USians only give a crap about their own patents, no-one else's. Just look at the shit-fight CSIRO had to go through to get money out of companies in the USA to honour their WiFi related patents.

Re:interesting concept (2, Informative)

icebike (68054) | more than 4 years ago | (#31783200)

She felt no compunction about stealing US inventions to help her "invention".

"r Wood turned to the emerging US-invented technology of cultured skin to save his life, working nights in a laboratory along with scientist Marie Stoner."

Re:interesting concept (3, Interesting)

Red Flayer (890720) | more than 4 years ago | (#31783686)

Yeah, while the premise is the same, implementations are not. The device being tested in the US is not the same as the delivery mechanism Woods uses, hence no invalidation for prior art.

Besides, what Woods should really be recognized for is not the spray-on delivery, but instead the advances in culturing techniques. This was the real breakthrough, IMO.

Of note, Woods got a lot of criticism for using her methods without it going through clinical trials. They're still not out of clinical trials, AFAIK...

We live in the future. (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31782094)

Spray-on skin. Printed blood vessels. Nanobot-delivered cancer killers. Wasn't all this science fiction just a few decades ago?

Re:We live in the future. (1)

Jeng (926980) | more than 4 years ago | (#31782192)

Right now its still in the lab, along with everything else you mentioned.

I would say that it is still science fiction today.

Re:We live in the future. (1)

X0563511 (793323) | more than 4 years ago | (#31782398)

It's in the lab. That it exists at all puts it out of fiction and into reality.

Re:We live in the future. (1)

Kelz (611260) | more than 4 years ago | (#31783312)

Fiction means not real, as opposed to "not yet in mass production and perfectly tuned".

Re:We live in the future. (2, Interesting)

CRCulver (715279) | more than 4 years ago | (#31782294)

In a sense, we've already outpaced science fiction. As recently as the 1990s, I enjoyed Larry Niven's Gil "the Arm" Hamilton stories (collected in Flatlander [amazon.com] ), which foresaw a future so dependent on organ transplants for longevity that even the simplest of crimes like jaywalking would get the death penalty. With China in the news at the time for executing prisoners and harvesting organs, that kind of dystopian future seemed completely plausible. Niven didn't foresee alloplasty (gadgets instead of organs) becoming an alternative for centuries. But already stem cell research, nanotechnology and tissue printing shows that we are jumping directly to modifying the human body through purely artificial means.

Re:We live in the future. (1)

burisch_research (1095299) | more than 4 years ago | (#31784748)

Niven's dystopian landscape in this case should not be mistaken for a genuine prediction. I enjoyed the book, but honestly Niven's intention in this case was surely no more than to create an entertaining story!

Re:We live in the future. (1)

CRCulver (715279) | more than 4 years ago | (#31785130)

The collection I mentioned above contains an afterword by Niven about how, in the mid-1990s, some of what he predicted seemed to be finally coming true. Of course Niven liked to create a good story, but in this case he was trying to be prescient.

Re:We live in the future. (1)

burisch_research (1095299) | more than 4 years ago | (#31785186)

Ok, sure, 90's and even early noughties. But seriously second-hand organs can't be a growth market for more than a handful of years,

Re:We live in the future. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31782964)

The use of the word nanobot in the relevant article was a sensationalist, seemingly idiotic choice of words that didn't look like it had any bearing on reality. They were more accurately described as nanoparticles. That being said, I look forward to a cancer cure, I just don't like it when writers assume their audience is stupid and try to pander to that.

At last... (1)

Majik Sheff (930627) | more than 4 years ago | (#31782110)

The Team Fortress II medigun technology is revealed!

Re:At last... (2, Funny)

JavaBasedOS (1217930) | more than 4 years ago | (#31782646)

Surgeon General's Warning: Prolonged exposure to this spray may result in one's skin gaining a metallic blue or red sheen. Yellowing of the eyes may occur.

Foreskins are stolen to make this :-( (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31785216)

Unfortunately foreskins are stolen at birth just so "burn" victims can be helped. Millions of men don't have sex as nature intended because of greedy pharma companies.

The device is cheap, but the cartridges ... (3, Funny)

PolygamousRanchKid (1290638) | more than 4 years ago | (#31782180)

... will bankrupt you.

Re:The device is cheap, but the cartridges ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31782206)

That's where the Chinese cartridge comes in...

Re:The device is cheap, but the cartridges ... (1)

Dunbal (464142) | more than 4 years ago | (#31782312)

That's where the Chinese cartridge comes in...

      Be sure to read the label:

      Warning! Do not use for burns around the eyes or you may obtain unexpected results.

Re:The device is cheap, but the cartridges ... (1)

frosty_tsm (933163) | more than 4 years ago | (#31782418)

That's where the Chinese cartridge comes in...

Be sure to read the label:

Warning! Do not use for burns around the eyes or you may obtain unexpected results.

While I know you're making a squinty-eye joke, I wonder if skin tone would carry over too.

Re:The device is cheap, but the cartridges ... (1)

Vahokif (1292866) | more than 4 years ago | (#31782456)

Now only 30% executed convict!

Re:The device is cheap, but the cartridges ... (3, Funny)

QRDeNameland (873957) | more than 4 years ago | (#31783070)

That's where the Chinese cartridge comes in...

Sure, if you want skin with melamine [wikipedia.org] in place of melanin [wikipedia.org] .

Re:The device is cheap, but the cartridges ... (3, Funny)

caffeinemessiah (918089) | more than 4 years ago | (#31782226)

Did anyone think about the poor sod whose job it was to burn the mice? I mean, it's difficult to catch mice that have just unsuccessfully rushed into burning buildings, or set themselves on fire by accident.

Then again, I know a guy who works in tissue engineering whose job is to "harvest" mice, as he calls it. Keeps their heads in a jar above his desk. Apparently, they bob around all day with a smiling expression.

You have to get your hands dirty for a lot of science...

Re:The device is cheap, but the cartridges ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31782282)

What do you mean? I would pay money to burn mice...

Re:The device is cheap, but the cartridges ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31783608)

And this is exactly why they don't let you do science.

Re:The device is cheap, but the cartridges ... (4, Funny)

jameskojiro (705701) | more than 4 years ago | (#31782334)

I know this one "person" who has to make sure their subject gets through a maze using a specilized tool. They motivate the subject by offering a tasty morsel and the subject usuallu complies. The subject sometimes breaks out of the maze right before they terminate the subject in a temprature controlled sterilization procedure. It is a pain because they have to plan an event to make the subject think that they succeeded in escaping, when in fact they didn't.

There is a lot of mess when it comes to making sure the Science gets done.

Re:The device is cheap, but the cartridges ... (4, Funny)

Dunbal (464142) | more than 4 years ago | (#31782368)

Er, so what does your programmer buddy who works on the WGA team at Microsoft have to do with this discussion?

Re:The device is cheap, but the cartridges ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31783932)

There is a lot of mess when it comes to making sure the Science gets done.

Because we can!

Re:The device is cheap, but the cartridges ... (1)

Arancaytar (966377) | more than 4 years ago | (#31783968)

But hey, your points of data will make a beautiful line.

Re:The device is cheap, but the cartridges ... (1)

achenaar (934663) | more than 4 years ago | (#31785070)

At least you made a neat gun!
I mean, seriously, the mice who are still alive will really appreciate it.

Re:The device is cheap, but the cartridges ... (1)

Locke2005 (849178) | more than 4 years ago | (#31782442)

They are Tibetan Buddhist mice... they set themselves on fire to protest the Chinese occupation of Tibet.

Re:The device is cheap, but the cartridges ... (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31784256)

How about abortion doctors? Are their hands dirty?

Re:The device is cheap, but the cartridges ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31782258)

I don't know about that, but they might cost you an arm and a leg...

Re:The device is cheap, but the cartridges ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31782384)

Hey, it's no skin off my nose.

Re:The device is cheap, but the cartridges ... (1)

X0563511 (793323) | more than 4 years ago | (#31782426)

I'd rather be a poor person than a dead burn victim.

Re:The device is cheap, but the cartridges ... (1)

Anomalyx (1731404) | more than 4 years ago | (#31782450)

so Lexmark is making the device then?

Re:The device is cheap, but the cartridges ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31785632)

What terrific news for the 5% of the population who will always be mice.

Re:The device is cheap, but the cartridges ... (1)

jnnnnn (1079877) | more than 4 years ago | (#31786666)

... actually might be cheaper than ink ones [technomaly.com] .

yay Science! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31782214)

all hail the power of Science!

Re:yay Science! (1)

achenaar (934663) | more than 4 years ago | (#31785086)

It works bitches! [xkcd.com]

First developed by an Australian (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31782228)

It's nice that the summary failed to mention the first person to achieve this was Dr Fiona Wood [wikipedia.org] from Perth.

Re:First developed by an Australian (1)

Anonymous Psychopath (18031) | more than 4 years ago | (#31783220)

It's nice that the summary failed to mention the first person to achieve this was Dr Fiona Wood [wikipedia.org] from Perth.

Probably because the article doesn't mention it, either.

Re:First developed by an Australian (5, Informative)

reverseengineer (580922) | more than 4 years ago | (#31783576)

There's a lot of work being done in this area right now- with good reason; there's tremendous potential, and the advance highlighted here is more of an incremental step in a rapidly maturing field than a breakthrough. As the parent notes, Dr. Fiona Wood pioneered a spray-on cell suspension over 15 years ago. She eventually founded a company (now called Avita Medical) which has commercialized this technology. [avitamedical.com] In the last decade, it has been discovered that with minimal modification, an off-the-shelf inkjet printer can print living cells- this article is an example. [sciencedirect.com]

The story here from Wake Forest is apparently a successful test of using an inkjet to print directly on wounds using multiple cell types. The group reported these results at the Translational Regenerative Medicine Forum [regenerati...dation.org] which took place the last few days. Who else happened to be at that forum? Avita Medical, where Dr. Wood still sits on the board.

Re:First developed by an Australian (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31784570)

In your summary you failed to mention the first person to achieve this was English and has migrated to Australia in later life.
Being an Aussie I love how we claim ownership of anyone successful. We do it for sport why not science. We especially love disowning
anyone from New Zealand when they fail.

Your fibroblasts cartridge is low... (3, Funny)

falken0905 (624713) | more than 4 years ago | (#31782244)

Your fibroblasts cartridge is low. Would you like to connect to the HP Medical Printing website to order refills?

Seems better in so many ways (4, Insightful)

91degrees (207121) | more than 4 years ago | (#31782246)

Looks like it cuts down on scarring as well, and it seems that grafting requires adding an additional injury from the donor section. Seems sensible not to do this.

Re:Seems better in so many ways (1)

X0563511 (793323) | more than 4 years ago | (#31782452)

Hmm. Refine this enough and I could see this being used to remove scars and blemishes.

Cut out the offending patch and slap on something new.

Definitely a boon for skin cancer too. Just excise (er... ok, flay) the area and spray on a replacement. Of course, we'd need to do this in layers since it's usually more than the top layers here.

Re:Seems better in so many ways (2, Informative)

Red Flayer (890720) | more than 4 years ago | (#31783712)

Just excise (er... ok, flay) the area and spray on a replacement

Finally! My true calling is found.

Re:Seems better in so many ways (1)

nospam007 (722110) | more than 4 years ago | (#31785708)

"Hmm. Refine this enough and I could see this being used to remove scars and blemishes.

Cut out the offending patch and slap on something new."

Cut out the tattoo and print a new one.

Act now and we'll throw in for free... (2, Interesting)

Locke2005 (849178) | more than 4 years ago | (#31782394)

As long as you're using printing technology to place cells over the wound, why not add pigments and voila! Instant tatoo!

Re:Act now and we'll throw in for free... (1)

interkin3tic (1469267) | more than 4 years ago | (#31783478)

As long as you're using printing technology to place cells over the wound, why not add pigments and voila! Instant tatoo!

I'm not a skin expert, it's my understanding that the top layer of skin cells are completely dead and sloughing off, so you couldn't just spray pigment onto healthy skin and expect it do do anything besides rub off. More likely, you'd have to remove the epidermis if you were doing this intentionally and not as a skin graft (in which case the skin has been removed and that's the problem.)

So it wouldn't be instant, you'd have to burn off the skin, which would be far more painful than a regular tattoo.

Anyway, what's more interesting is that you might be able to pattern cells that express different colors. A "cellular tattoo". I'd think it would also not fade like regular tattoos can, since the cells themselves would be continuously making the color, depending on how you did it. But there's at least one other problem there, the transgenic part.

If you were to just stick a gene for purple into the cell's genome with a retrovirus, you'd get purple cells. But the transgene gets inserted at random. If you were to implant them back into you, that color may have been inserted into an important gene for preventing cancer, and you'd get something like purple melanoma. No good. As I understand it, there are methods for putting transgenes into specific areas of the genome (relating to homologous recombination), so you could be sure you weren't causing cancer, but all the techniques I've heard of have such low efficiencies that it would be hideously expensive. Like, even moreso than a traditional tattoo.

And actually, now that I think about it, a smarter way of doing it would probably involve induced pluripotency, you could take some cells, cause them to become ipsc (the "fake" stem cells you may have heard about), use homologous recombination to get the pigment expressed in a safe place, select for those purple cells, expand them, induce them to start turning into skin cells, and then use this cell printer tech to make a pattern on the site (after the epidermis has been removed.)

That's three different technologies that haven't been fully developed yet or approved by the FDA, so it will be a while, and I can't see that ever getting into the price range of a normal tattoo. Also, I'm not an expert in any of those multiple fields. Interesting to think about though.

Re:Act now and we'll throw in for free... (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31783486)

Why doesn't this article have a "Darkman" tag?

Re:Act now and we'll throw in for free... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31783496)

I was thinking the opposite... this will make tattoo removal MUCH less painful.

Re:Act now and we'll throw in for free... (2, Funny)

complete loony (663508) | more than 4 years ago | (#31783720)

"My face burned off and all I got was this stupid tatoo"?

Re:Act now and we'll throw in for free... (1)

Eternauta3k (680157) | more than 4 years ago | (#31783852)

Burn victims across the globe rejoice...
And then cringe in pain

A bit late (-1, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31782514)

This sort of spray on skin idea was done successfully at the University of Adelaide, Australia already. Fiona Wood was the innovator.

Go Deacs! (1)

StormBear (129565) | more than 4 years ago | (#31782828)

The hometown of Wake Forest University, Winston Salem, has a whole section of its downtown devoted to start-ups developing new cutting edge medical technology. Ironically it is the same location where cigarettes were cranked out by the billions.

Re:Go Deacs! (1)

Yhippa (443967) | more than 4 years ago | (#31783442)

Especially interesting at a Baptist university. I'm pretty ignorant as is but I never would have pegged WFU to do something this cool.

Oh yeah: ACC! ACC! ACC!

Imagine spraying it where it doesn't belong (1)

LoverOfJoy (820058) | more than 4 years ago | (#31782974)

The new mace. Spray the mugger a new pair of sealed-shut eyelids.

Something tells me (1)

toby (759) | more than 4 years ago | (#31783044)

It wasn't much fun to be those mice.

yum0 Fail It (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31783318)

Rat Pain (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31783758)

please compare that to fetus pain.

The future is now (1)

ThePirateKing (1785558) | more than 4 years ago | (#31783842)

I mean seriously, DAMN, this is like, Star Trek level shit. Seriously. Spray on skin? What next? I love the 21st century.

I thought about this a few months ago. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31783864)

I was wondering how effective it might be if it was possible to excise a scar and then to spray on a layer of new skin.

Might it be useful to prevent hypertrophic scarring and keloids?

Borderlands (1)

RenHoek (101570) | more than 4 years ago | (#31784634)

I've been playing too much Borderlands.. While reading the article a voice kept screaming in my head: "Strip the flash! Salt the wounds!"

And soon to follow... (1)

falken0905 (624713) | more than 4 years ago | (#31785056)

Print your own penis extension. Erg, I hope they don't use mouse cell for mine! Hmmm, maybe donkey cells or...?
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