With the texture, shape and smell of the original Kobe beef, a team of Japanese scientists managed to grow a product with real stem cells.
At first glance, there is no difference between the original Kobe beef and the one printed in a Japanese laboratory. A team of scientists from the University of Osaka achieved a 3D bioprinting that faithfully replicates the texture, shape, and smell of the most expensive meat in the world. Because they mimicked the arrangement of muscles, fat, and blood vessels, the researchers say they found a sustainable alternative for those who enjoy these traditional dishes.
Michiya Matsusaki, a biochemist at Osaka University, is sure he found a way to replicate the original ‘recipe’ to replicate the natural structure of Kobe beef. From a controlled laboratory environment, it will now be possible to grow these products to “reproduce complex structures of meat, like the beautiful Sashi [or marbling] of Wagyu beef,” he explains to Smithsonian Magazine.
The bioprinting model is a greener alternative to livestock for these elite dishes. “The computer generates layers of material to generate a final three-dimensional project ” describe the authors.
Unlike other 3D prints, which use plastics or metals, these laboratory meat products build complex structures, such as blood vessels and muscle tissue. By applying real stem cells from cows, chickens, and pigs, you get an artificial piece that even has the veins of Sashi or Wagyu.
A perfect cut of Kobe beef
To make this, Japanese scientists used two types of stem cells from specific breeds of cows. By manipulating them, it was possible to cultivate them to generate artificial meat. In this way, complex structures were imprinted on the final product, generating ” a perfect cut of Kobe beef”
“Using the histological structure of Wagyu meat as a model, we have developed a 3D printing method that can produce complex custom-made structures such as muscle fibers, fat and blood vessels,” co-author Dong-Hee Kang said in a statement.