Shaping Tomorrow Insight Newsletter: 3D bio-printers to print skin and body parts

kristy Trendspotting

3D meets biology

3D films and TVs, applications in gaming, PCs and on the web, in augmented reality marketing and telepresence communications are arriving in the marketplace thick and fast. They are set to revolutionise our lives, in particular leisure – for example, enabling us to interact and ‘meet’ friends when we are all in different places. But 3D is also coming to other areas, which could revolutionise our lives just as much: biological imaging.

What’s changing

A new microscope will enable researchers to see, non-invasively inside cells, to watch the interactions and dynamics of the internal workings of cells revealing their 3 dimensional shapes. The technique enables far greater detail – 10 -20 nanometres – and more importantly begins to overcome the problems of real time cell observation: previous techniques ‘killed’ the cells in the process.

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Contributed by Sheila Moorcroft, Research Director, Shaping Tomorrow

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