Scientists printed a bioreactor on a 3D printer and grew a mini-brain in it

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Scientists from India and the U.S. have grown self-organizing brain tissue using a bioreactor printed on a 3D printer. It is a cheap system for growing organoids for research purposes.

The project, presented by employees of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and the Indian Institute of Technology in Chennai, allows to observe the growth and development of organoids, which are created to solve scientific and medical problems. Usually microfluidic technologies are used to grow organoids, which are very complicated and expensive to produce.

The new method made it possible to grow a mini-brain in a bioreactor, the cost of which is only five dollars. It was possible to make the platform cheaper by using 3D-printing technologies, which have been showing a real boom in recent years.

The new technology for growing organoids was tested on human cells. Scientists managed to create self-organizing brain tissue from the cells, thus obtaining a mini-brain. The development of the organoid lasted for seven days, the scientists noted, adding that in the process, the mini-brain acquired a complex neocortex system. “Our bioreactor showed very good results – there were almost no dead cells among the cultured cells, which indicates the high potential of the system,” the project authors said.