Thanks to the work of a group of researchers and scientists from ARC Center of Excellence for Materials Science and San Vicente Hospital, in Melbourne (Australia), we found a project baptized with the name of Biopen where it has been possible to create a printing pen with the capacity to 3D print stem cells in real time, without a doubt a huge advance that can serve, for example, for the repair of cartilage and bones during surgical interventions.
In order for Biopen to be able to work with stem cells in real time, one of the first steps that had to be taken was to develop a kind of hydrogel bio-ink through which it could transport and support human stem cells. After this, the way to achieve a light capable of solidifying the ink was studied with which to make the ballpoint pen, as is the case, able to offer a stem cell survival rate acceptable, in the case of Biopen, located above 97%.
Biopen, a printing pen capable of working with stem cells in real time
The way of working of this system is very simple, as its developers explain, the pen deposits a gelatinous cellular material in the damaged cartilaginous area. The stem cells contained in the compound will reproduce when released, making the area of the damaged bone grow. Being literally a pen, it allows the surgeon a unprecedented control in generating damaged tissue.
According to Peter choong, Director of Orthopedics at Hospital de San Vicente:
The development of this type of technology is only possible with the interaction between scientists and clinicians: the latter to identify the problem and the scientists to develop a solution.
The pen project highlights exciting challenges and opportunities in multidisciplinary research. When we do better, we can make extraordinary progress at a rapid pace.
Thanks to Biopen the surgeon has unprecedented control in the treatment of cartilage stripped points, being able to fill them to measure with the necessary living tissue.