The prospect of medical teams being able to print replacement body parts is exciting.  As someone who has experienced reconstructive surgery, the idea that surgeons can perfectly recreate an exact match brings great hope.  Patients would no longer have to rely on artistry and good fortune - or repeated surgeries - to obtain symmetrical, life-like results.

New 3D printing technology created by a team at Wake Forest University in North Carolina is showing great promise reliably printing human tissue and organs. Bioprinting, as it is known, is a big leap for medical technology and is now coming into its own as an effective and beneficial means of healthcare and healing. The bioprinter works similarly to other 3D printers, but instead of printing in metals or plastics, it prints hydrogels containing human cells. What is special about this new printer is that the tissue that it prints is able to accept blood vessels and therefore essentially keep the cells alive. This research is especially exciting for the medical community, which is already looking to the future and the potential that this technology has for us.

AuthorRenee Eaton

Working in the Portland State Accelerator, we are literally down the hall from a number of interesting tech-based companies, so we come across a lot of cool products.  For some residents, we provide engineering support, for others, rapid prototypes, 3D printing, 3D scans, parts, molds/tools, and models.  We thought it would be fun – and informative - if we showcased some.  Two of our neighbors use sensors for monitoring in powerful ways.  Today, we'll showcase the first...

APDM creates movement monitoring solutions for health conditions, biomedical research and athletic training.  Originally designed to collect data from people affected by Parkinson’s, their wearable sensors are widely used in research and have evolved to “include a Clinical Data Management System (CDMS) called Mobility Exchange.”  Three options are available:  sapphire, emerald, and opal which include many features (docking stations, body straps, temperature calibration, and data logging among others). 

Having two relatives stricken by Parkinson’s, it’s excited to see devices that are unobtrusive - imagine a monitor as small as a watch - yet effective enough to gather volumes of data to fuel research demands.