A handheld device that “prints” new skin cells onto a wound has been successfully trialed by a team of researchers in Canada. The 3D-printed layer of skin could be used to help patients with severe burn injuries too extensive to allow skin grafts.
According to the World Health Organization (WHO), an estimated 180,000 deaths every year are caused by burns. Even non-fatal burn injuries are a leading cause of morbidity, disfigurement, and disability. Current methods for treating full-thickness burns, which destroy both the upper and lower layers of skin, include scaffolds and in vitro skin substitutes as well as skin grafts.