Organ printing: Tissue spheroids as building blocks

Vladimir Mironov, Richard P. Visconti, Vladimir Kasyanov, Gabor Forgacs, Christopher J. Drake, Roger R. Markwald

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

450 Citations (Scopus)


Organ printing can be defined as layer-by-layer additive robotic biofabrication of three-dimensional functional living macrotissues and organ constructs using tissue spheroids as building blocks. The microtissues and tissue spheroids are living materials with certain measurable, evolving and potentially controllable composition, material and biological properties. Closely placed tissue spheroids undergo tissue fusion - a process that represents a fundamental biological and biophysical principle of developmental biology-inspired directed tissue self-assembly. It is possible to engineer small segments of an intraorgan branched vascular tree by using solid and lumenized vascular tissue spheroids. Organ printing could dramatically enhance and transform the field of tissue engineering by enabling large-scale industrial robotic biofabrication of living human organ constructs with "built-in" perfusable intraorgan branched vascular tree. Thus, organ printing is a new emerging enabling technology paradigm which represents a developmental biology-inspired alternative to classic biodegradable solid scaffold-based approaches in tissue engineering.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2164-2174
Number of pages11
Issue number12
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2009


  • Bioreactor
  • Organ printing
  • Tissue engineering
  • Tissue fusion
  • Tissue spheroids

Field of Science*

  • 2.5 Materials engineering
  • 3.4 Medical biotechnology

Publication Type*

  • 1.1. Scientific article indexed in Web of Science and/or Scopus database


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