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We printed a 3D heart

Using cutting-edge technology, Dr Otton has created a 3D model of the heart.

This printed heart model represents normal heart anatomy and is an exact replica of the one that continues to beat within a patient. 

Watch Today Tonight’s story – A patient’s heart is printed in 3D


This technology will help doctors plan for device implantation, allowing the size of the device to be perfectly tailored to the individual patient, preventing leakage or damage to the heart.

The benefits are enormous. Not only will doctors have a greater understanding of their patient’s heart condition, but by precisely planning and rehearsing procedures prior to surgery, it will reduce the time operations take, and minimise unexpected problems, patient injury or death. This is particularly important given just a few millimetres can be the difference between life and death.

“Eventually, it’s possible that fully functioning hearts could be bioprinted, with Australia at the forefront if the research is adequately funded,” says Dr Otton.

Learn more about our current research projects