Its a proven fact — medical science when blended with technology can give you some breathtaking results. And this is exactly what Bangalore-based biotech startup Pandorum — working on tissue engineering — has achieved.
Pandorum has developed artificial tissue using 3D printing technology that performs the functions of the human liver — pretty much giving us the next clue on solving complex liver transplant issues, encountered mostly due to lack of a donor.
These 3D printed living tissues would also enable affordable medical research with reduced animal and human trials, and will eventually lead to full scale transplantable organs.
Founded in 2011 by academic entrepreneurs from Indian Institute of Science (IISC), Pandorum Technologies Pvt. Ltd. is a biotechnology startup working on design and manufacturing of functional human tissues; for medical research, therapeutic and other applications. Pandorum is supported by grants from BIRAC, GoI, and is located in C-CAMP, Bangalore Bio-Cluster.
Many of us might not be very well acquainted with this fact that thousands of animals every year sacrifice their lives for medical researches and experiments, that eventually are used to make human life better. This major breakthrough might save millions of those lives, without making any changes to the way medical experiments are carried out. Moroever, this will also fulfill on-demand manufacturing of human organs for transplant.
Dr. Tuhin Bhowmick, who holds a PhD from the Indian Institute of Science, and co-founded the company, said –
This is a significant milestone being able to engineer complex tissues such as the human liver is no easy task. Development of artificial organs has numerous clinical uses. Cell based organoids can be used to develop bio-artificial liver support systems for preserving life in patients who have developed liver failure. In the near future, such artificial organs will address the acute shortage of human organs available for surgical transplantation.
This achievement will also prove to be a game changer for developing new medicines and vaccines. And while artificial livers have been developed earlier, this can be a breakthrough for emerging economies like India, where healthcare is affordable only for those coming from outside the country, and not to the general populace as a whole.
Mr. Arun Chandru, co-founder and managing director of Pandorum Technologies said –
Liver toxicity and drug metabolism are the key hurdles, and contributors to failed human trials. Our 3D bio-printed mini-livers that mimic the human liver will serve as test platforms for discovery and development of drugs with better efficacy, less side-effects and at lower costs.