Scientists at the Louisiana Tech University claim they have developed a way to print medicines and other biodegradable material using consumer grade 3D printers.
Jeffery Weisman, a doctoral student in Louisiana Tech’s said:
“After identifying the usefulness of the 3D printers, we realized there was an opportunity for rapid prototyping using this fabrication method.
“Through the addition of nanoparticles and/or other additives, this technology becomes much more viable using a common 3D printing material that is already biocompatible. The material can be loaded with antibiotics or other medicinal compounds, and the implant can be naturally broken down by the body over time.
“One of the greatest benefits of this technology is that it can be done using any consumer printer and can be used anywhere in the world.”
The research team also claim that dosages can be regulated and altered.
Dr. David K. Mills also added:
“Currently, embedding of additives in plastic requires industrial-scale facilities to ensure proper dispersion throughout the extruded plastic.
“Our method enables dispersion on a tabletop scale, allowing researchers to easily customize additives to the desired levels. There are not even any industrial processes for antibiotics or special drug delivery as injection molding currently focuses more on colorants and cosmetic properties.”