英国科学家开发出新型生物墨水可3D打印软骨

日前,英国布里斯托大学(University of Bristol)的科学家们开发出了一种新型的生物墨水,据称这种墨水最终可能3D打印出可作为手术植入物的复杂组织。这种含有干细胞的生物墨水可以用来3D打印活组织,也就是我们常说的生物打印。这种新型生物墨水包含两种不同的聚合物成分:从海藻中提取的天然高分子材料和可用于医疗行业的损耗型合成聚合物,而且这两种成分都能够发挥作用。其中合成聚合物可以在温度升高时将生物墨水从液体转化成固体,而海藻中的提取物则在引入细胞营养时为其提供结构支持。

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http://www.bris.ac.uk/news/2016/june/bio-ink.html

A new bio-ink for 3D printing with stem cells

Scientists at the University of Bristol have developed a new kind of bio-ink, which could eventually allow the production of complex tissues for surgical implants.

The new stem cell-containing bio ink allows 3D printing of living tissue, known as bio-printing.

The new bio-ink contains two different polymer components: a natural polymer extracted from seaweed, and a sacrificial synthetic polymer used in the medical industry, and both had a role to play. The synthetic polymer causes the bio-ink to change from liquid to solid when the temperature is raised, and the seaweed polymer provides structural support when the cell nutrients are introduced.

Lead researcher Dr Adam Perriman, from the School of Cellular and Molecular Medicine, said: "Designing the new bio-ink was extremely challenging. You need a material that is printable, strong enough to maintain its shape when immersed in nutrients, and that is not harmful to the cells. We managed to do this, but there was a lot of trial and error before we cracked the final formulation."

"The special bio-ink formulation was extruded from a retrofitted benchtop 3D printer, as a liquid that transformed to a gel at 37°C, which allowed construction of complex living 3D architectures."

The team were able to differentiate the stem cells into osteoblasts – a cell that secretes the substance of bone – and chondrocytes – cells that have secreted the matrix of cartilage and become embedded in it – to engineer 3D printed tissue structures over five weeks, including a full-size tracheal cartilage ring.

Dr Perriman said: "What was really astonishing for us was when the cell nutrients were introduced, the synthetic polymer was completely expelled from the 3D structure, leaving only the stem cells and the natural seaweed polymer. This, in turn, created microscopic pores in the structure, which provided more effective nutrient access for the stem cells.

The team's findings, featured on the cover of Advanced Healthcare Materials, could eventually lead to the ability to print complex tissues using the patient's own stem cells for surgical bone or cartilage implants, which in turn could used in knee and hip surgeries.

Paper:

'3D Bioprinting Using a Templated Porous Bioink' by James P. K. Armstrong, Madeline Burke, Benjamin M. Carter, Sean A. Davis, and Adam W. Perriman in Advanced Healthcare Materials.

 


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