University of Turin
Giorgia Montalbano, Giulia Molino, Sonia Fiorilli, and Chiara Vitale-Brovarone
Osteoporosis and degradation of bone mechanics affects millions of people each year, often leading to fractures and immobility. Therefore, regenerative medicine strategies are urgently needed. Bioprinting complex geometries with collagen, however, can be challenging and most scaffolds based on type I collagen and hydroxyapatite are fabricated by freeze-drying or casting, application that give bioengineers limited control over the final shape and porosity of their constructs.
The team at the Polytechnic University of Turin mitigated these challenges by combining the BIO X, a temperature controlled printhead and gelatin-supporting baths (the FRESH method) to 3D bioprint taller, more complex bone scaffolds with type I collagen.
The study validates the potential for collagen nanocomposites as a material for high-resolution 3D bioprinting. The authors also suggest that using the hybrid material represents a significant step toward fabricating biomimetic patient-specific bone-like scaffolds on demand.
Synthesis and incorporation of rod-like nano-hydroxyapatite into type I collagen matrix: A hybrid formulation for 3D printing of bone scaffolds. Journal of the European Ceramic Society. 2020. DOI: 10.1016/j.jeurceramsoc.2020.02.018.