Indiana tech company takes to space to 3D-print a heart substitute


Southern Indiana company miles from the interstate and close to the middle of nowhere is working with NASA on a project. But that's normal for Techshot Inc.

John Vellinger, co-founder of Greenville-based Techshot, has worked with the national space agency for nearly 30 years, since winning an eighth grade science fair sponsored by NASA. Although the original science fair project focused on developing chicken embryos in space, the partnership has a new focus: creating human organs in zero gravity.

On June 14, Techshot helped create the first 3D heart bioprint, which can be used as a substitute for a heart. It was made from adult stem cells printed in zero gravity. The development will help people who need transplants, whether they're on earth or in space.

The project required three layers — ink, printer and bioreactor — and, therefore, three companies. Techshot teamed up with Florida-based bioprinter nScrypt Inc. and Kentucky-based bioink creator Bioficial Organs Inc. for the project. Continue reading
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