Published on April 6th, 2015 | by ananya kondiparthy
3D printed bio-cement to regenerate bone tissue
Scientists have come out with a very interesting and also a viable solution to aid any recovery during bone fracture, taking the help of 3D printing technology. This material have been created using a biological material from the animal bones. The specialty of this material, which they are calling the “bone cement”, is that once the body starts healing and starts forming the new bones in the fractured area it can dissolve in the human tissue, and it does not even leave any trace after getting dissolved.
Scientists at the Russian National Research Nuclear University, have been dedicated to develop this substance using biological hydroxyapatite, a white powder which transforms into liquid when it is mixed with biological polymer. Therefore it remains soft and automatically hardens when it is placed inside the human body.
Actually this soft material, made from hydroxyapatite, is used during the 3D printing process. While being 3D printed, it turns hard as a bone (like in case of other 3D printing process). Professor Vitaly Guzeev, a member of the research team, explains, “On the basis of hydoxypatite, we prepared a liquid material that we can fill a 3D printer with”. So we know that the hydroxyapatite is being the printing material which is being used to create the “bone cement”. Guzeev gives an example where a man has suffered a craniocerebral injury. He says that the injured part is 3D scanned and sent to a printer, which is where the lost bone part is recreated.
Guzeev adds, “We have created material that the organism takes as original, the bone marrow contains mesenchymal cells that migrate to the damaged tissue areas. They detect our matter as something that can take part in biochemical processes and start processing it to enable [cell] division. Regeneration is cell division itself. As a result, a new bone tissue is produced with its own blood vessels and nerve cells.”
So, this process is basically altering the traditional process where either a titanium would be used and then removed after the damaged part gets repaired automatically in the human body.
But, according to a statement, “bone cement” is not something the doctors at the university were intending to create. They wanted to make a material as hard as titanium, minus the iron impurities, which would aid in speeding up the healing process when it will be applied to the titanium prostheses. However things took its own turn and ‘born cement’ came into existence.
This material can also be used in dentistry or cosmetology.
The next step ?? ‘Bone Cement’ will be passing the clinical tests and get through marketing authorization so that it can be used in medical marketing.
This development is an apt example of how 3D printing technology has not just entered the medical industry but also how doctors are committed in creating materials that would benefit humanity as much as possible and in this article it is proven that the doctors are aiming at creating materials which are natural and perfect for the human body, at the same time can be easily “printed” using 3D printing technology.