Tuesday, January 28, 2014

The Story Gets More Interesting

In the past, I have written a number of articles about how 3D printing has not only revolutionized the way that companies can manufacture their products, but instead has launched them into a new era of product creation entirely. 

Companies like Boeing, General Electric and Rolls Royce, all major players in their industry, are beginning to produce products such as jet engines and commercial airplane parts through the use of 3D printing in search of creating new advantages over their competitors. 

Out of this world… 

But it doesn't stop there, space agencies are now realizing the possibilities for this new technology and are beginning to launch 3D printers into space to make repairs to their machinery. 

The University of Cambridge have also made use of the new developments by reporting significant progress in repairing vital parts of retinal cells to help treat human blindness.

Researchers in Wake Forest University are printing skin grafts, and in Washington State University they are successfully printing custom fit human bones.

But for me the most incredible development comes from a 3D-bio printing company called Organovo. They, currently, replicate human tissue for medical trials in liver research. The final product is so similar to that of human tissue that researchers now use it as a main source of experimentation. Organovo eliminates the need, safety concerns and overall cost for human trial and so provide a very profitable service both ethically and financially. 

Organovo's goal for 2014 is to be able to print fully functional transplantable organs thus eliminating the need for donors. They strive to eliminate the death of that one person out of five who die waiting for an organ transplant. The company displays a lot of confidence in their ability to achieve their goal and as a result could find themselves further propelled as leaders in their industry. Some interesting facts… 

As it stands the average cost of a liver transplant is roughly US $71,000. With the 6,000 patients in the US receiving liver transplants per year and the other 1,200 whom pass away due to delayed procurements. This is a potential US$511.2 million market for Organovo. 

When all is said and done, Organovo remains a long-term investment opportunity but expect a volatile ride short-term. It is going to take time to reap what they have sown. It was the top pick for 2013 in the WIN Vision model portfolio. 

If you have missed any of my previous articles please CLICK HERE

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