It’s now possible to obtain a 3D printed model of your own brain.
Brainform is a specialized 3D print service that uses MRI scan data to create detailed prints of human brains. While printing a 3D model is pretty straightforward these days, obtaining MRI data might not be.
Brainform offers a service to hook you up with a local researcher who can capture an MRI scan of your brain. No, it’s not necessarily expensive - according to Brainform:
Researchers around the world are constantly looking for people to participate in their research. These pages include research projects that require you to get an MRI scan as part of participating. All you need to do is contact the researcher using the means we have provided, participate in the research, ask for a copy of your scan and give it to us to print!
They’ve been gathering a small database of medical researchers worldwide who wish to participate in this program. Of course, you may also be able to obtain an appropriate DICOM files from an MRI scan if you have the right connections or have had a scan taken previously. If you are unable to acquire your own scan, Brainform offers a selection of “stock brains”.
The prints are literally a “brain on a stem” and appear suitable for educational and personal use. A custom, life-size personal brain print printed on an SLS 3D printer is priced at USD$340, whereas a half-size brain print is priced at USD$110. Stock brain prints are a bit less.
Although Brainform is based in New Zealand, they say shipping rates to the rest of the world are “pretty reasonable”.
It may seem like a natural progression of technology to see the arrival of a 3D print service that can use MRI scan data to produce a 3D model of your brain, but that’s where we are today. You can actually press a button and receive a print of your brain.