Cellular and Molecular Bioengineering

, Volume 11, Issue 4, pp 219–240 | Cite as

3D Bioprinting Stem Cell Derived Tissues

  • Nishat Tasnim
  • Laura De la Vega
  • Shweta Anil Kumar
  • Laila Abelseth
  • Matthew Alonzo
  • Meitham Amereh
  • Binata JoddarEmail author
  • Stephanie M. WillerthEmail author


Stem cells offer tremendous promise for regenerative medicine as they can become a variety of cell types. They also continuously proliferate, providing a renewable source of cells. Recently, it has been found that 3D printing constructs using stem cells, can generate models representing healthy or diseased tissues, as well as substitutes for diseased and damaged tissues. Here, we review the current state of the field of 3D printing stem cell derived tissues. First, we cover 3D printing technologies and discuss the different types of stem cells used for tissue engineering applications. We then detail the properties required for the bioinks used when printing viable tissues from stem cells. We give relevant examples of such bioprinted tissues, including adipose tissue, blood vessels, bone, cardiac tissue, cartilage, heart valves, liver, muscle, neural tissue, and pancreas. Finally, we provide future directions for improving the current technologies, along with areas of focus for future work to translate these exciting technologies into clinical applications.


Pluripotent stem cells Biomaterials Bioinks Regenerative medicine Tissue engineering Drug delivery Controlled Stem cell niche 



The Willerth lab would like to acknowledge funding from the Stem Cell Network, the Canada Research Chairs program, the NSERC Discovery Grant program, MITACS, and the British Columbia Innovation Council. Dr. Willerth has a collaborative research agreement with Aspect Biosystems. Laura De la vega has received graduate support from MITACS. Dr. Joddar acknowledges NIH BUILD Pilot 8UL1GM118970-02, NIH 1SC2HL134642-01 and the NSF-PREM program (DMR 1205302). Nishat Tasnim acknowledges the Anita Mochen Loya fellowship at UTEP. Matthew Alonzo acknowledges the Eloise E. and Patrick B. Wieland fellowship at UTEP. Schweta Anil Kumar, Laila Abelseth, and Meitham Amereh have no other funding sources to declare outside of those mentioned earlier.

Ethical approval

This article does not contain any studies with human participants or animals performed by any of the authors.


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Copyright information

© Biomedical Engineering Society 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Inspired Materials & Stem-Cell Based Tissue Engineering Laboratory (IMSTEL), Department of Metallurgical, Materials and Biomedical EngineeringUniversity of Texas at El PasoEl PasoUSA
  2. 2.Department of Mechanical EngineeringUniversity of VictoriaVictoriaCanada
  3. 3.Biomedical Engineering ProgramUniversity of VictoriaVictoriaCanada
  4. 4.Faculty of EngineeringUniversity of British Columbia-Okanagan CampusKelownaCanada
  5. 5.Border Biomedical Research CenterUniversity of Texas at El PasoEl PasoUSA
  6. 6.Division of Medical SciencesUniversity of VictoriaVictoriaCanada
  7. 7.International Collaboration on Repair DiscoveriesUniversity of British ColumbiaVancouverCanada

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