New 3D Printing Method to Create Complex, Multi-Cellular Tissues

Researchers from University of Oxford have been working to overcome some of the major challenges of 3D printing living tissues and have just published a report of how they were able to create complex, multi-cellular structures that stay viable and are able to structurally support themselves. This high density bioprinting process is also cheap, reliable, and can be adapted to work with different cell types and target structures, perhaps opening the door to new therapies for a wide variety of diseases and conditions.

In order for the living cells to be able to combine into a coherent structure instead of a messy pile, the researchers bunched the cells into separate droplets each contained within an oily shell. These individual units can be placed next to and on top of each other, layer by layer, into whatever shape is desired. The cells remain pretty much where they were originally placed and after a while the entire structure comes together to become a unified piece of tissue.

“We were aiming to fabricate three-dimensional living tissues that could display the basic behaviours and physiology found in natural organisms,” in a published statement said Dr. Alexander Graham, lead author of the study appearing in Scientific Reports. “To date, there are limited examples of printed tissues, which have the complex cellular architecture of native tissues. Hence, we focused on designing a high-resolution cell printing platform, from relatively inexpensive components, that could be used to reproducibly produce artificial tissues with appropriate complexity from a range of cells including stem cells.”

Study in Scientific Reports: High-Resolution Patterned Cellular Constructs by Droplet-Based 3D Printing…

Via: Oxford…

Happy 5th Anniversary to!

In short, I wanted to thank everybody for your readership and feedback over the past five years. I initially launched this website in an effort to educate residents Cincinnati Children’s. The initial launch for the site was heralded by a Twitter trivia contest. Needless to say PEMBlog grown into something much bigger than I had ever hoped. Since August 2012 I’ve amassed over 320,000 site views from readers across the globe! This is because you’ve kept reading the site and have shared it with your colleagues. I don’t make a dime off of I will never have ads and I truly believe that the #FOAMed movement is one worth nurturing and supporting. That’s why I will continue to bring you content free of charge and commercial bias.

You may have noticed that the site and its logo has undergone a bit of a refresh – nothing too drastic of course. In addition to iterating upon the design, layout and functionality of the site I promise to continue to deliver educational blog posts, increase my video content, and offer CME for PEM Currents, the Pediatric Emergency Medicine Podcast. Despite my site’s growth the core message remains the same – That all of our patients deserve a care provider who not only does the right thing but knows how and why to do the right thing. That more than anything else drives me to share what I’ve learned.

Thank you again from the bottom of my heart for your support and engagement. Without you, the readers and contributors, PEMBlog would not be where it is to day. You all inspire me to be a better teacher and physician!

ECG of the Week – 14th August 2017 – Interpretation

The following ECG is from a 74 yr old male who presented with suspected cardiac chest pain.

Click to enlarge
  • 103 bpm
  • Regular
  • Abnormal P wave preceding each QRS
  • P wave inversion leads II, III, aVF, V3-6
  • Positive P wave in lead aVR and V1
  • Normal
  • PR - Short (~100ms)
  • QRS - Normal (80ms)
  • QT - 330ms (QTc Bazette 430 ms)

  • Early R wave transistion
  • Very flat T waves through-out


  • Ectopic Atrial Tachycardia

The ECG machine failed to recognize the abnormal P wave axis instead reading the ECG as showing delta waves in leads V5-6 and II due to relatively short pr with superimposed p inversion trailing into the QRS. 
Remember always look at the ECG yourself, don't trust the machine and take the ECG to the bedside.

What happened ?

The patient was admitted under the cardiology team for further investigation of suspected ACS. Coronary angiogram showed diffuse non-obstructive coronary disease for medical management. Following commencement of beta-blocker therapy the patient's ECG reverted to normal sinus rhythm with unchanged QRS morphology. 

References / Further Reading

Life in the Fast Lane

  • Chan TC, Brady WJ, Harrigan RA, Ornato JP, Rosen P. ECG in Emergency Medicine and Acute Care. Elsevier Mosby 2005.