Cardiovascular disease is the most common cause of death in Ireland, according to the Irish Heart Foundation, responsible for one in three of all deaths. Irish researcher Dr Barry Doyle is trying to understand this disease and help create new ways to treat it.
Dr Doyle established the Vascular Engineering Laboratory at the University of Western Australia in May, 2014. The lab currently has a large range of projects under way, and some of the most exciting ones relate to 3D bioprinting.
“[We] are using 3D bioprinting to try [and] print living tissue,” Dr Doyle says. “This uses liquid materials with cells mixed inside to 3D print structures. So we hope to begin by printing organs that are alive and can be implanted into animals, to help us work towards one day being able to print new hearts.”