Wagyu marbled beef 3D printed in Japan

Wagyu marbled beef 3D printed in Japan

Scientists at Osaka University used stem cells isolated from Wagyu cows to 3D print alternative meat containing muscle, fat and blood vessels arranged to resemble regular steaks.

Wagyu can literally be translated as “Japanese cow”. This meat is known for its genetic predisposition to intense marbling and high unsaturated fat content. Marbling gives the beef a rich flavor and distinctive texture. However, the methods of raising cattle today are often considered unsustainable due to the large amount of harmful emissions into the atmosphere. Currently available alternatives to “cultured meat” cannot replicate the intricate texture of real beef steaks.

The team started with two types of stem cells called bovine satellite cells and adipose-derived stem cells. Under the right laboratory conditions, these cells can be transformed into any type of cell required for the production of cultured meat. Individual fibers were made from these cells using bioprinting. The fibers were then arranged in three dimensions according to the histological structure of real wagyu meat.

Using the histological structure of wagyu beef as a sample, we have developed a 3D printing method that allows the creation of complex structures such as muscle fibers, fat and blood vessels.

Study author Dong-Hi Kang

The developers clarify that after improving the technology, customers will be able to order cultured meat with the desired amount of fat, based on taste and health reasons.

Wagyu marbled beef 3D printed in Japan

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