BENGALURU: A city-based bio-technology startup, Pandorum Technologies Pvt Ltd, announced on Tuesday that it has developed artificial liver tissues through 3-D printing, that function like human tissues.
Dr Sonal Asthana, senior consultant at Aster CMI Hospital, said, “It is a breakthrough for medical science in India, where around 32 per cent of the population is at risk of non-alcoholic fatty liver disease, given the poor diet and sedentary lifestyle.”
“This technology will help us create a liver dialysis machine with multiple liver tissues put in columns, which will perform liver-like functions and will help people with liver diseases. Within five years, we can see it materialising,” added Dr Asthana.
Dr Tuhin Bhowmick, co-founder of the company and a PhD scholar from Indian Institute of Science, said engineering complex liver tissues such as the human liver is no easy task. “Our creation is a major step towards on-demand manufacturing of human organs for transplant and has the potential to revolutionise medicinal research.”
Pharma giants on an average spend upward of $10 billion and invest 10 years on research and development to get a new drug in the market with the approval of the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).
Development of artificial organs has numerous clinical uses. These 3D printed liver tissues will enable affordable medical research with reduced animal and human trials and will eventually lead to full-scale transplantable organs.
“Liver toxicity and drug metabolism are the key hurdles and contributors to failed human trials. Our 3-D bio-printed mini-liver that mimics the human liver will serve as test platform for discovery and development of drugs with better efficacy,” said Arun Chandru, co-founder and director of the company.
“We are able to print around 10 million cells currently. By 2020, we will increase our efficiency to printing one billion cells. It is only by 2030 that we will be equipped to print 100 billion cells, and it is then when we envisage to print on-demand organs for full-scale transplantation,” added Arun Chandru.