|Cultured meat is a rising player of global food trend amid COVID-19 pandemic as more people forced to stay indoor demand foods manufactured more safely. Gettyimagesbank|
By Ko Dong-hwan
Genetic research firm Eone Diagnomics Genome Center (EDGC) has received global attention with its cultured meat production technology using 3D printers.
The firm's exclusive technology in making a "scaffold," a key component when growing cells in a three dimensional environment for cultured meat, has been introduced in the international peer-reviewed scientific journal "Polymers," the company said Dec. 29
The study in the journal was published under the title "Cell-Laden gelatin methacryloyl bioink for the fabrication of Z-stacked hydrogel scaffolds for tissue engineering."
The technology was jointly developed with local agricultural biotechnology firm Noah Biotech headquartered in Cheonan, South Chungcheong Province. They signed a memorandum of understanding and began the research in June 2020.
"With our scaffold technology, more than 95 percent of engineered cells can survive, which can drastically reduce the time required to mass-produce cultured meat," an EDGC researcher said.
"Polymers" also mentioned that EDGC has developed a new innovation that can replace expensive bioink ― consisting of biogenic materials and cells ― with a simpler technology, ultimately lowering the production cost.
EDGC co-CEO Shin Sang-cheol said cultured meat demand has risen since more people were forced to stay indoors due to the COVID-19 global pandemic infection risks and demanded safer foods developed under strictly controlled environments. It was this new rising food trend that has made the Songdo-based firm in Incheon challenge the global cultured meat market with Noah Biotech.
The partnership was founded on the agreement to genetically engineer three dimensional cow stem cells using 3D printers. The technology has surpassed all precedents in size ― compared to that of a finger joint, EDGC's cultured meat can be as large as a cut of steak.