Three-dimensional bioprinting of biosynthetic cellulose (BC) implants and scaffolds for tissue engineering
Virginia Tech Intellectual Properties, Inc.
Davalos, Rafael V.
Tzavaras, Theodore Jon
Sano, Michael B.
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A novel BC fermentation technique for controlling 3D shape, thickness and architecture of the entangled cellulose nano-fibril network is presented. The resultant nano-cellulose based structures are useful as biomedical implants and devices, are useful for tissue engineering and regenerative medicine, and for health care products. More particularly, embodiments of the present invention relate to systems and methods for the production and control of 3-D architecture and morphology of nano-cellulose biomaterials produced by bacteria using any biofabrication process, including the novel 3-D Bioprinting processes disclosed. Representative processes according to the invention involve control of the rate of production of biomaterial by bacteria achieved by meticulous control of the addition of fermentation media using a microfluidic system. In exemplary embodiments, the bacteria gradually grew up along the printed alginate structure that had been placed into the culture, incorporating it. After culture, the printed alginate structure was successfully removed revealing porosity where the alginate had been placed. Porosity and interconnectivity of pores in the resultant 3-D architecture can be achieved by porogen introduction using, e.g., ink-jet printer technology.
- Virginia Tech Patents