Skin bioprinter to space
GS Paper - 3 (Space Technology)
On a recent resupply mission to the international space station (ISS), NASA’s SpaceX-Dragon spacecraft carried many things necessary for scientific experiments, including supplies for crew members, and among other things, detergent and even a skin bioprinter, launching from Kennedy Space Center in Florida.
What is skin bioprinting?
- In many scientific papers, skin bioprinting has been hailed as “a novel approach for creating artificial skin from synthetic and natural building blocks.
- How our skin heals after an injury is determined by multiple factors including immune response and environmental changes.
- So, wound healing will be different in a spacecraft or moon, as opposed to Earth, as the pressure, gravity and environment composition is different.
- Three-dimensional (3D) bioprinting for reconstruction of injuries involves layer-by-layer deposition of cells along with scaffolding materials over the injured areas.
- Bioprinting “enables accurate placement of cell types and precise and reproducible fabrication of constructs to replace the injured or damaged sites”.
- So, this quickens wound-healing and prevents wound infection, making an astronaut, for example, in space to go back to doing their duties.
- It’s an absolutely important advancement over natural wound healing especially for large wounds.