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Medical and Dental AM

The medical and dental AM sectors are today the largest adopters of 3D printing technologies for the production of consumer-targeted items, including prosthetics, implants, dental replacements and physical models.

The use of 3D printing technologies extends well beyond 3D printed implants. Surgical guides and presurgical models can in a way be compared to the widespread use of AM for prototyping and tooling in the industrial manufacturing arena. Leading AM hardware manufacturers, such as 3D Systems, EnvisionTEC, EOS and SLM Solutions – along with service providers like Materialise – are investing heavily to develop both medical and dental AM applications.

While the benefits of AM technologies for personalized medicine and more efficient surgical practices is well documented, several hurdles still exist that are limiting a widespread adoption of these key technologies in hospitals and medical practices. Several of these hurdles are inherent to the AM technologies and related material availability, however, the biggest challenges remain in a general lack of awareness and skepticism, resulting in a slow pace of adoption.

Today very significant strides have been made – mainly in the private segment – toward the development of advanced polymers, metals, and ceramics fit for implantation in humans. The private dental segment is going through a full-size boom in the adoption of AM technologies and processes. With this month’s Industry Focus we zoom in on the latest advancements and take a look at the upcoming opportunities for medical and dental AM.

Latest Medical and Dental AM news:

Poietis and Prometheus collaborate on 3D bioprinting for cost-effective skeletal regeneration

Poietis, a leading French bioprinting company and Prometheus, the Division of Skeletal Tissue Engineering at KU Leuven, entered into a 2-years Collaborative Research Agreement focused on high-precision 3D Bioprinting of tissue engineered Advanced Therapeutic Medicinal Products (ATMPs) for skeletal regeneration. Prometheus focuses on the bench-to-bedside clinical translation of increasingly sophisticated, …

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anatomical modeling

3D Systems introduces On Demand Anatomical Modeling Service for 3D printed medical models

Additive manufacturing pioneer 3D Systems has introduced its new On Demand Anatomical Modeling Service for medical 3D printing applications. The newly launched service provides medical professionals access to 3D printable and highly detailed anatomical models for improving surgical planning as well as patient education. Within the medical industry, there are …

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Microplate bioprinting platform could help combat age-related degenerative muscle diseases

With increasing life expectancies across much of the globe, the need for medication and treatments for age-related degenerative muscle and tendon diseases is growing. And though much research is being done on that front, medical scientists have faced consistent challenges in developing effective drugs for muscle degeneration. Fortunately, a team …

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PEEK 3d printing

OPM expands to Asia with Curt Jennewine to lead business development from Japan

Oxford Performance Materials (OPM) is a fascinating company founded in 2000 to exploit and commercialize the use of poly-ether-ketone-ketone (PEKK) through additive manufacturing for medical and industrial applications. The company developed a high-performance additive manufacturing (HPAM) process (a modified laser sintering approach) to produce fully functional, end-use structural parts. Now …

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Lets get real: what can we bioprint? (and what is just media hype?)

Inaccurate reports on bioprinting functional organs run the risk of raising false expectations within the public, with the inevitable “let downs” that follow. These are made even more intense by the “life and death” nature of some organ transplants. Yet, bioprinting is opening up some truly amazing possibilities in the …

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Sugar and slice: 3D printed free-form isomalt has applications in bioengineering, microfluidic devices

While we often talk about bioinks and hydrogel materials for 3D bioprinting applications, a group of engineers from the University of Illinois have developed a new (and sweet!) material and 3D printer system which could have important applications in biomedical engineering, cancer research and device manufacturing. Using an isomalt-based material …

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UCLA engineer develops multi-material 3D bioprinter for complex artificial tissues

A UCLA bioengineer has developed a technique that uses a specially adapted 3D printer to build therapeutic biomaterials from multiple materials. The advance could be a step toward on-demand printing of complex artificial tissues for use in transplants and other surgeries. “Tissues are wonderfully complex structures, so to engineer artificial versions …

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Lab-on-a-Printer developer Aspect Biosystems receives $1M investment from Genome BC

Canadian biotechnology company Aspect Biosystems has received a $1 million investment from  Genome BC, a Vancouver-based non-profit dedicated to genomics innovation. The funding will go towards advancing and further commercializing Aspect Biosystems’ 3D bioprinting and tissue engineering platform. Since its founding in 2013, privately held Aspect Biosystems has been a …

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