Taiwan university optimistic about 3D printed trachea transplant

Research team hopes new technology can bring about Taiwan’s first trachea transplant

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3D printer (image from Max Pixel)

3D printer (image from Max Pixel)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) – After a series of successful trials, a research team at National Taiwan University (NTU) is optimistic about successfully completing Taiwan’s first 3D printed trachea transplant.

A trachea transplant of any kind has never taken place in Taiwan, and the advert of new technologies is opening a new frontier of medical care.

The interdisciplinary research team has worked on the problem for over two years, yielding two patents and their results published by the Ministry of Science and Technology on Dec. 19.

Chen Chin-hsing (陳晉興), head of medical affairs at National Taiwan University Hospital’s Department of Surgery, told Liberty Times that the first human case of a trachea transplant involving 3D printed devices is just around the corner.

Chen said the 3D printed device can release drugs to promote cell growth, and this system overcomes some rejection problems associated with traditional transplants.

More than 20 successful transplants have taken place on animals, and Chen said that a proposal to move the research into human trials was submitted last month.