New 3D Printer That Creates Custom Prescription Drugs Developed by University College London

University College London (UCL) have developed an exciting new 3D printing technique: “volumetric 3D printing” that lets the pharmaceutical industry customize drugs – including shape, size, dosage, and release – according to each patient’s individual needs.

BY MARK ALLINSON 

In turn, medical professionals may eventually be able to use 3D printing to “print” prescription drugs for patients in-office in the future. Not only does 3D printing promise to improve personalized medicine, but it’s also set to drastically cut cost and waste in the process. 

Solving race and gender inequalities with personalized medicine

3D printing may reduce or eliminate the problem of race and gender inequality in prescription drug manufacturing. “Currently, medications are developed especially for white adult men, which means that all women and children have an excessive prescription for their bodies”, explains Fred Parietti, PhD, co-founder and CEO of Multiply Labs, a developer of advanced robotics technology that manufactures personalized prescription drugs.

“This fact underlines the importance of the advent of personalized medicines, as well as highlighting the individuality of each patient, since the error in the dosage of certain active ingredients can even lead to the malfunctioning of some treatments”.

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New 3D-printing ink could make lab-grown meat much cheaper to produce

Appearances of cultured meat models without and with treatment of natural food coloring (beet) CREDIT: Jie Sun (Xi’an Jiaotong-Liverpool University)

by John Anderer

SUZHOU, China — Lab-grown, or cultured, meats represent a promising, more environmentally friendly alternative to actual meat from livestock, but high production costs have hindered its widespread use. Now, however, research out of Singapore and China reports the discovery of a way to use food waste to make cultured meat, which would reduce production costs considerably.

Cultured meat is made using animal muscle stem cells grown on a scaffold, which improves the environment for the cells by enabling transport of nutrients and allowing for the generation of texture and structure. Without this approach, the meat is more likely to end up resembling lumpy mashed potatoes.

Unique scaffolds can be created using an emerging 3D-printing technology known as Electrohydrodynamic (EHD) printing. These scaffolds become part of the meat product, so they have to be edible themselves, and are thus usually made using animal products such as gelatin and collagen, or synthetic materials. This is expensive to produce. Establishing a more affordable way to create edible inks for printing would be a major boon for the cultured meat movement.

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US explores application of 3D bioprinting to create eye tissue

Efforts have resulted in very relevant retina tissue models of degenerative eye diseases

Scientists are now using patient stem cells and 3D bioprinting to produce eye tissue that will advance understanding of the mechanisms of blinding diseases. The research team from the National Eye Institute (NEI), part of the National Institutes of Health in the US, printed a combination of cells that form the outer blood-retina barrier—eye tissue that supports the retina’s light-sensing photoreceptors.

The technique provides a theoretically unlimited supply of patient-derived tissue to study degenerative retinal diseases such as age-related macular degeneration (AMD). 

“We know that AMD starts in the outer blood-retina barrier,” said Kapil Bharti, Ph.D., who heads the NEI Section on Ocular and Stem Cell Translational Research. “However, mechanisms of AMD initiation and progression to advanced dry and wet stages remain poorly understood due to the lack of physiologically relevant human models.”

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3D Printed Heart Valves Can Form New Tissue

A close-up of a printed scaffold for a heart valve. The different structures that ensure the appropriate biomechanics are clearly visible.

Researchers from the Technical University of Munich (TUM) and the University of Western Australia used melt electrowriting have created the first-ever 3D printed heart valve with a heterogeneous structure as is seen in human heart valve tissue. This heterogeneous property is essential to the proper opening and closing of valves, so the development holds great potential for the future of artificial valve replacement, especially in children who need adaptability as they grow.

The team developed a platform that precisely prints customized patterns and pattern combinations, allowing the team to perfect various mechanical properties within a single scaffold, as well as created software that eased the difficulty in creating complex heart valve structures.

“Our goal is to engineer bioinspired heart valves that support the formation of new functional tissue in patients,” says Petra Mela, Professor of Medical Materials and Implants at TUM and a leader of the study. “Children would especially benefit from such a solution, as current heart valves do not grow with the patient and therefore have to be replaced over the years in multiple surgeries. Our heart valves, in contrast, mimic the complexity of native heart valves and are designed to let a patient’s own cells infiltrate the scaffold.”

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New biomaterial for 3D Printing can regenerate bones and prevent infections

New biomaterial can regenerate bones and prevent infections

Scientists at the Universidad Católica de Valencia’s (UCV) Bioengineering and Biomaterials Laboratory in Spain have created a new porous biomaterial for 3D printing that can regenerate bones while also preventing infections. The biotech creations, which are custom-made for each case using 3D printing, include a bioactive alginate coating. This coating promotes bone regeneration and kills bacteria that can prevent bone formation from being completed.

Because the material is biodegradable, it eventually disappears from the body after the bone has been regenerated. The research was conducted on small animals, specifically rabbits. The following step will be to test larger animals and, eventually, humans.

The American Chemical Society’s ACS Applied Materials & Interfaces journal published the UCV study (ACS). The work was done in collaboration with a number of institutions.

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This 3D-Printed House Is the First to Be Made Entirely From Bio-Based Materials

Named BioHome3D, the structure was printed on the world’s largest 3D printer

By Bridget Reed Morawski

Maine doesn’t have enough affordable housing or enough workers to build more, but it does have quite a bit of excess wood fiber from its substantial forestry industry. Seeking a solution to those problems, researchers with the University of Maine have taken the industry byproduct to create an experimental 3D-printed house—named BioHome3D—they say is entirely recyclable and bio-based.

The state’s paper mills were once a reliable consumer of the forestry industry’s wood residues, according to Habib Dagher, the executive director of the University of Maine’s Advanced Structures & Composites Center, which created the 600-square-foot prototype. But several of those mills have closed in recent years, leading to a glut of the material.

“There’s a lot of that waste material now that is generated yearly in our state and in the region,” Dagher tells AD. “We have over a million tons per year of waste wood residues that are accessible to us [and] that can create a lot of homes.”

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Company That 3D-Prints Houses on Earth Lands Lunar Construction Contract

In a conceptual rendering, astronauts watch robots 3D-print structures out of processed lunar dirt.

By Rob Pegoraro

NASA awards Icon a $57.2 million contract to develop a system to build structures on the Moon out of mined lunar dirt.

NASA’s plans to return astronauts to the Moon include giving them someplace roomier to stay than their own spacecraft. So the space agency is paying a company that 3D prints home structures on Earth to develop the same technology for lunar use. 

Under a $57.2 million contract announced Tuesday under NASA’s Small Business Innovation Research program, Austin-based Icon Technology, Inc., will continue previous collaborations with NASA to develop its Project Olympus additive-construction concept into a system to build structures on the moon.

The raw material for the first such structure is already on the Moon: the surface layer of soil, or regolith to geologists. NASA’s plans for long-term exploration of the Moon and, eventually, Mars rely heavily on generating needed materials and supplies from what’s on the ground there—what it calls “In situ resource utilization”—instead of shipping everything from Earth. 

In Icon’s idea, robots will mine regolith for processing by Olympus machines into a material that can then be extruded to create structures that you might think of as exceptionally sci-fi sand castles. 

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3D Organs Soon? This Indian Start-up is Breathing Life Into Science, Printing One Layer of Human Tissue at a Time

While the world has already seen the success of 3D dental and orthopedic implants, the next big challenge has been to develop whole new 3D human organs.

By:  Srishti Choudhary

Bioprinting can revolutionise the healthcare market and holds promise for millions of patients stuck in an endless wait for organ transplants — a list that gets longer every minute with a new name added to it.

What comes to your mind when you think of 3D human organ? A computer-generated structure? What if scientists could actually inject life into this structure and help patients get a new lease of life?

Born in the aftermath of the pandemic, a Bengaluru-based deep tech start-up — Avay Biosciences — is attempting to do their bit to transform this long-held dream into a reality, printing one layer of live human tissues at a time. The team of young entrepreneurs has just launched their first product — the indigenous advanced 3D Bioprinter ‘Mito Plus’ — which has been successfully tested at Indian Institute of Science (IISc) Bangalore, and is ready to print human tissues.

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Designing a 3D-printed EMG bionic hand as a low-cost alternative to prosthetic limbs

The cost of a new prosthetic arm can range from several thousand dollars to tens of thousands, putting them out of reach for many people. Ahmad Ikram recognized this need and decided to design and build a far cheaper, open source version that has myoelectric capabilities.

To begin this project, Ikram decided upon using the InMoov 3D-printed arm design from French sculptor Gael Langevin due to it being easy to construct. The hand itself contains a single wire connected to each finger, while the other end gets wrapped around a servo motor horn so that the finger can bend whenever the serv moves. A Myoware muscle sensor is responsible for reading the electrical signals generated by muscle contractions and converting them into a readable analog voltage, which is read by an Arduino Nano’s analog pin.

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How 3D printing is reshaping the future of supply chains

Supply chain disruptions continue to plague global economies, especially within the manufacturing industry. In Australia, manufacturers with offshore operations are experiencing significant supply chain issues that threaten productivity and financial stability.

According to the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS), more than a third of all businesses experienced supply chain disruptions in February 2022. Of those businesses, 88 per cent reported increased time to receive products from suppliers, while 80 per cent reported that existing suppliers were unable to provide products.

Recent changes to the supply chain emerged shortly after the global pandemic was announced, particularly during COVID-19 lockdowns, due to abrupt shifts in demand that created bottlenecks at ports worldwide. Australia’s strong reliance on international trade and foreign investment has made the impact on some supply chains significant. This reflects temporary trade restrictions, reduced transport options, and increased port loading and unloading times.

Supply chain issues started with COVID-19; however, they’re also affected by intensifying geopolitical tensions, increased consumer demand, labour shortages, inflation, depleted inventory levels, and increased freight costs.

The Australian manufacturing sector was, and continues to be, impacted in several ways. According to data from the ABS, the most common supply chain issue facing businesses is domestic and international delivery delays, followed by supply constraints and increased prices. However, soaring transport costs and a significant shortage of parts and raw materials also affect the industry.

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We just built the world’s largest 3D-printed aerospike rocket engine.

Algorithmically engineered aerospike rocket engine printed in copper at AMC

Last night, EOS sister company AMCM completed the print of the world’s largest aerospike rocket engine. It was engineered completely in Hyperganic Core using advanced software algorithms and has never seen a single piece of manual CAD. It’s likely the most complex AM part ever produced — it broke all conventional workflows. AMCM printed it in copper in their massive 1m build volume machine. The engine stands at 80cm tall.

This aerospike rocket engine is a demonstration of what’s possible when you combine the power of software algorithms with the world’s most advanced Additive Manufacturing systems. 

People have been trying to build aerospikes for a long time. The Space Shuttle was supposed to have a linear one. But nobody could make it work at the time, given the manufacturing methods. The aerospike has significant advantages over traditional bell nozzle designs. It’s altitude compensating and does away with the heavy nozzle extension, with a spike in the middle instead. It’s easily 15-20% more efficient than bell nozzle engines. This is a dramatic improvement in the field of rocketry where even fractions of percentage points are worth pursuing. The challenge was always cooling the spike in the middle of the extremely hot exhaust gas.

Continue reading… “We just built the world’s largest 3D-printed aerospike rocket engine.”

Surgeons Grow 3D-Printed Nose on Patient’s Arm

And then grafted it onto the patient’s face.

The ENT and Cervico-Facial surgery teams of the Toulouse University Hospital and the Claudius Regaud Institute carried out a surgical intervention at the Toulouse-Oncopole University Cancer Institute consisting in completely reconstructing a patient’s nose from a synthetic graft previously implanted in the patient’s forearm to pre-vascularize it.

The patient had been treated in 2013 for nasal cavity cancer (squamous cell carcinoma) by radiotherapy and chemotherapy. As a result of this treatment, the patient lost a large part of their nose as well as the front part of their palate.

For more than four years, the patient lived without a nose, facing failures in nasal reconstruction by skin flap grafting and difficulty coping with wearing a facial prosthesis.

The patient was thus offered a nasal reconstruction using custom-made biomaterial, based on a surgical procedure carried out in two stages by Prof. Agnès Dupret-Bories and Dr. Benjamin Vairel.

This type of reconstruction had never before been performed on such a fragile and poorly vascularized area and was made possible thanks to the collaboration of the medical teams with the company Cerhum, a Belgian manufacturer of medical devices specializing in bone reconstruction . This new technique also makes it possible to overcome certain limitations presented by other techniques.

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