The idea of 3D printing living cells opens a lot of opportunities ranging from 3D printed organs to tissue on demand to skin replacement for burn victims. Here is one idea you may not have considered, however: printing tumors.

Researchers are developing a new process for researching cancer treatments that uses 3D printers to create a better in-lab cervical tumor model.

Tumor models, used to test treatment methods, are usually grown in a dish, but these traditional "2D tumors" are often a poor analog for the real thing. 3D-printed tumor behave more like naturally cancerous flesh might, growing and reacting to treatments like the real deal.

A healthier fake tumor means that medical research and drug trials will yield more realistic results. In other words, creating cancer could be the future of treating cancer. Researchers are still developing the process, but anyone who wants to peek in on their progress can find it in the Institute of Physics' Biofabrication journal.

Via Engadget. Image Shutterstock.

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