Hungry? Print Yourself Some Bacon
Ink-jet printing has come a long way; we used to use it for what was called "hard copy." Soon, you will be able to use a modified ink-jet printer to make yourself some breakfast.
Tissue engineers like Vladimir Mironov of the Medical University of South Carolina, and Thomas Boland of Clemson University, have been printing biomaterials with modified ink-jet printers.
(Ink-jet printing creates tubes of living tissue)
The cartridges are washed out and refilled with suspensions of living cells;
the software that controls the characteristics of the ink is reprogrammed and
you're good to go. Boland and Mironov use layers of "thermo-reversable" gel
to build up three-dimensional structures like tubes - capillaries, to use the
term. When the tiny droplets, or clumps, of cells came together closely, they
fused; the gel can be easily removed, leaving a tube of tissue.
Just as printers contain inks of different colors, so tissue printers could contain different cell types to create complex structures.
Now, it seems to me that a tube or complex living organ is a pretty complicated structure. Why not practice with a simpler, more two-dimensional form of muscle tissue - like bacon, for instance? Nothing like fresh bacon.
(Real bacon made the hard way)
Artificially cultivated meat is a USDA-certified science-fictional idea. In his
slightly creepy 1969 novel Whipping
Star, science fiction phenomenon Frank
Herbert wrote about pseudoflesh,
meat protein that was produced apart from an animal:
"Where would they get a real steer?"
"There are some around for story props in the various entertainment media, that sort of thing. A few of the outback planets where they haven't the technology for pseudoflesh still raise cattle for food."
(Read more about Frank Herbert's pseudoflesh)
Take a look at Cultured Meat Straight From The Vat for yet another promising technology. See also Replacement organs hot off the press.
Scroll down for more stories in the same category. (Story submitted 2/3/2006)
Follow this kind of news @Technovelgy.
| Email | RSS | Blog It | Stumble | del.icio.us | Digg | Reddit |
you like to contribute a story tip?
Get the URL of the story, and the related sf author, and add
Comment/Join discussion ( 25 )
Related News Stories -
Phil Nuyttnn's City Under The Sea
''Under the lower roof there was no water, but a clear and luminous atmosphere...' - Andre Laurie, 1895.
Stick-On Tape Speakers, As Predicted By Bruce Sterling
Flexible tape speakers, someday.
Has Climate Change Already Been Solved By Aliens?
'I had explained," said Nessus, "that our civilisation was dying in its own waste heat.' - Larry Niven, 1970.
Skin Electronics 3D Printed
'June's body is a tracery of lambent lines, like some arcane capillary circuitry...' - Paul Di Filippo, 1985
Technovelgy (that's tech-novel-gee!)
is devoted to the creative science inventions and ideas of sf authors. Look for
the Invention Category that interests
you, the Glossary, the Invention
Timeline, or see what's New.
Jaguar I-Pace Audible Vehicle Alert System For EVs
'Of course not a vehicle moved by means of internal explosions of a derivative of rock oil...'
Autonomous 'Fiberbots' Weave Large Structures
'It extrudes material like a spider.'
Birds Aren't Real - Wake Up, California! (With Bird Watching Guide)
'When he had first built them, they had been crude indeed, flying mechanisms with little more than a reflex-response unit.'
Self-Healing Material Pulls Carbon Out Of The Air
'... could seal the punctures.'
IRL Glasses Block Screens, Limit Vision To Real Life
'If you couldn't see the ads, how would you know what was fashionable?'
Testing The Single-Person Spacecraft
'...the lower part of the suit was simply a rigid cylinder.'
Shapeshifting Materials Transform By Light
'Its lines wavered, flowed, and then painfully reformed.'
Fully Automated Farm Iron Ox Hydroponics
'Had these machines in some incredible fashion been provided with brains?'
BrainNet Social Network Of Brains
'I used my implant to tell MILLIE what we wanted and she took care of it'
Phil Nuyttnn's City Under The Sea
'Under the lower roof there was no water, but a clear and luminous atmosphere...'
IONITY Opens First 10 Fast-Charging Stations
'Recharge the batteries... in almost every town and village...'
Superstrong Multilayer Metal-Graphene Composite Material
Negligible increase in weight increased material strength by hundreds of times.
Deepfakes Imperil Democracy (George Orwell, Right Again)
'All history was a palimpsest, scraped clean and reinscribed exactly as often as was necessary.'
String Art Courtesy Of Robot Artist
The number of different ways to span a thread between a larger number of hooks is astronomical.
Still Wondering If You'd Work For A Robot Boss?
'This is all coming to you courtesy of the simstim unit wired into your deck, of course.'
World's First Autonomous Tram In Germany
What's it like for autonomous trams when they're turned off at night?
More SF in the News Stories
More Beyond Technovelgy science news stories