Additive Manufacturing of functionally graded scaffolds for bone tissue engineering – Presented by Ravi Sinha, MERLN Institute, Maastricht University at the 3D Bioprinting Conference which takes place on Jan 31, 2017 at MECC Maastricht in The Netherlands.
“The classical tissue engineering approach has been to put cells within structural supports (scaffolds) which would resorb or remodel and integrate as the cells grow and form the tissue. Additive manufacturing (AM) has enabled this field immensely, due to the ability of these techniques to produce incredibly complex structures at several size scales, thus trying to mimic complex tissue structures and obtaining functional tissue as a result. Nature, however, does not just use structures, but also gradients in structures as well as mechanical and chemical properties. While AM can already be used to create structural gradients, for example gradients of porosity, producing mechanical and chemical gradients has been more challenging. Towards this end, we are developing a hybrid AM platform which will enable mixing varying ratios of two materials in a 3d printer head during processing, thus enabling mechanical property gradients. In addition, the platform will include the ability to carry out in-situ atmospheric plasma surface treatment and chemical modification, thus enabling chemical gradients while manufacturing. This development work is being carried out as a part of an ambitious European Union consortium project (http://project-fast.eu/en/home). Here, we will explain the various aspects of this project while putting it in the context of the larger research goals in biofabrication for regenerative medicine.”
About Ravi Sinha
Ravi has a background in materials and biomedical engineering. For his PhD, he designed platforms to apply mechanical stimulations to cells and is currently using computational modeling to aid in a 3d printer head design. His interests lie in tissue engineering with a focus on material properties and mechanical signals.
About MERLN Institute, Maastricht University
Research at MERLN is focused on developing novel and breakthrough technologies to advance the field of repair and regeneration of both tissues and functional organs. The strategy includes, amongst others, the development of “smart” biomaterials, which can trigger intrinsic tissue repair mechanisms mediated by the patient’s own cells.