All in 3d printing

The concept of organ printing based on the techniques of directed deposition and sequential biological tissue self-assembly opens the possibility of being able to organize cells and molecules in three dimension with the desired local density, functionality and anatomical structure mimicking their distribution in organs. 3D bioprinting (and ethical debate on its use) gain more and more traction in medical conferences and journals—what the specific applications are involved and how the technology development might affect the average citizen. But what if the ability to 3D print organs and other soft tissues also brings wonderful opportunities for the organs and tissues to be "enhanced" with non-human genetic material?

While patent laws protect design concepts in the traditional manufacturing model, additive manufacturing is not so clear-cut. The legal question becomes, "Who really owns the design of a part that is printed?".  And regarding counterfeiting of parts, the technology of additive manufacturing makes reverse engineering an unnecessary step, thereby easing the way for counterfeiters to do their work quickly and more efficiently.  Add to that the very real concern about the structural integrity of objects produced by additive manufacturing methods, and you can see that counterfeit parts produced in this way may result in catastrophic failure, and, depending on the use of the object, even potentially loss of life.