Researchers use 3-D bioprinting to create custom-shaped cartilage for use in surgical procedures

Researchers use 3-D bioprinting to create custom-shaped cartilage for use in surgical procedures

A team of University of Alberta researchers has discovered a way to use 3-D bioprinting technology to create custom-shaped cartilage for use in surgical procedures. The work aims to make it easier for surgeons to safely restore the features of skin cancer patients living with nasal cartilage defects after surgery. The researchers used a specially designed hydrogel--a material similar to Jell-O--that could be mixed with cells harvested from a patient and then printed in a specific shape captured through 3-D imaging. Over a matter of weeks, the material is cultured in a lab to become functional cartilage. It takes a lifetime to make cartilage in an individual, while this method takes about four weeks. So you still expect that there will be some degree of maturity that it has to go through, especially when implanted in the body. But functionally it's able to do the things that cartilage does." Adetola Adesida, Professor of Surgery, Faculty of Medicine & Dentistry, University of Alberta "It has to have certain mechanical properties and it has to have strength. This meets those requirements with …
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