3D bioprinting tech to be licensed by Tel Aviv University

The technology was used to print a heart made of human cells and extracellular matrix at TAU in 2019.

A 3D printed, small-scaled human heart engineered from the patient’s own materials and cells. (photo credit: TEL AVIV UNIVERSITY)
A 3D printed, small-scaled human heart engineered from the patient’s own materials and cells.
(photo credit: TEL AVIV UNIVERSITY)

Tel Aviv University (TAU) and biotechnology company Matricelf signed an exclusive global licensing agreement for the commercialization of a patent in the field of 3D bioprinting of tissues and organs, the university announced on Sunday.

The technology was developed by Prof. Tal Dvir of the TAU's Department of Biotechnology who is head of the Nanotechnology Center at the university and the Chief Scientific Officer and co-founder of Matricelf.

Matricelf will receive the global rights as well as exclusivity to both develop and produce the technology used for printing tissues and organs, subject to meeting scientific and business conditions. The company will commit to sign at least one commercialization agreement with a third party within 36 months, subject to approval by Ramot, the technology transfer company of TAU.

The patent covers different aspects of the technology which allows for simultaneous 3D printing of cells and extracellular matric for producing tissues and organs and is currently undergoing the application process for approval in the US and Europe. The technology is based on liquid nano-molecules which stabilize the printed biological structure. It was used to print a heart made of human cells and extracellular matrix at TAU in 2019.

 Matricelf CEO Asaf Toker (credit: Matricelf) Matricelf CEO Asaf Toker (credit: Matricelf)

Matricelf will pay Ramot a licensing fee of tens of thousands of dollars, as well as additional fees according to its meeting milestones set out by the agreement. Ramot will also receive royalties at a single digit rate.

"The growing shortage of organs for transplants is leading to the need to find breakthrough solutions, primarily 3D biological printing of tissues and organs," said Dvir.

"This field is expected to develop at an accelerated pace over the next decade and we believe that this technology of printing organs, which simultaneously combines cells and extracellular matrix, well positions us to realize the company’s vision to become a pioneer in the regenerative medicine sector, due to the unique platform for printing tissues and organs that will provide a remedy and save the lives of patients throughout the world."

“Ramot – the technology transfer company of Tel Aviv University, believes in the ability of this breakthrough technology of Prof. Tal Dvir, to change the rules of the game in the tissue engineering sector and to benefit the entire medical world," said Ramot CEO Keren Primor Cohen. "Ramot will continue to invest and to promote innovative technology of this kind by the university’s researchers, together with leading partners from the industry such as companies like Matricelf.”