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Scientists 3D-Print Hair Follicles in Lab-Grown Skin

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Rensselaer reseachers Pankaj Karande, left, and Carolina Catarino.

When it comes to engineering human skin, hair may at first seem superfluous. However, hair follicles are quite important: they produce sweat, helping regulate body temperature, and they contain stem cells that help skin heal.

Credit: Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute News

A team led by scientists at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute has three-dimensionally (3D) printed hair follicles in lab-grown human skin tissue.

The researchers first allowed samples of skin and follicle cells to divide and multiply in the lab until there were enough printable cells.

They then mixed each type of cell with proteins and other materials to create the “bio-ink” used by the printer.

The printer builds a skin layer by layer, while creating channels for depositing hair cells. The skin cells eventually migrate to these channels, duplicating the follicle structures present in real skin.

Said Rensselaer’s Pankaj Karande, "This kind of automated process is needed to make future biomanufacturing of skin possible."

From Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute News
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Abstracts Copyright © 2023 SmithBucklin, Washington, D.C., USA


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