The 3D printing technology provides the medical industry with viable solutions for complicated medical procedures. Today, 3D printing is no longer used in creating prosthetics but also in synthetically creating natural-occurring cells and tissues.
Fabricating cells and tissues using 3D printing technology is a complex method. However, researchers were able to create breast cancer tissues and gland tissues to study disease progression and also drug testing. The key to the success of printing cells and tissues lies on Bio-Ink which is a material that serves as the structural scaffold for the tissues.
While the current bio-ink used in 3D bioprinting is already effective, researchers want to improve this technology further. Recently, a study published in the journal ACS Biomaterials Science & Engineering demonstrated the new material for bioprinting. Called Polyol-Silk Bioink, it uses silk solutions called non-toxic polyols (sugar alcohol) in creating self-curing features that allow structural support and less processing. With this new material, tissue engineering will be less complicated.
Developed by David L. Kaplan and his team of researchers from the Biomedical Engineering Department of Tufts University, the new silk biogel is clear as well as flexible. It is also stable in water and superior to other materials like gelatin, collagen, and silicone. This material can also withstand high temperature and pH changes.
This latest bio-ink provides a possible answer to solving the many challenges encountered in the bioprinting arena. With this new innovation, it is now possible for researchers to create tissues faster and more stable than conventional methods.