3D Printing Molds for PDMS Applications
The traditional method of tissue regeneration was solely dependent on the availability of donors. As a result, artificial scaffolds were use for research and development.
Scaffolds are used to repair or replace tissue that has been damaged. Scaffolds come in to play to create an environment that allows for cell growth and tissue development. Overtime, the scaffold will degrade and as a result, eliminates the process of removing the material. In this article, we wanted to discuss how 3D printing is an alternative for the fabrication of scaffolds
Of course due to the complex nature of scaffolds there are several types of scaffolds developed by different companies across the globe. From Collagen Scaffolds to Hydrogel Scaffolds which work on the premise of different materials and structures. They all work in different ways and are required in different studies and research.
With these parameters required for a scaffold, a 3D Printer is valuable tool for flexibility. By using CAD software such as Fusion 360, you can design a scaffold to meet your requirements.
First of all, in this article, we have specifically worked with the M50 from CADworks3D, due to its open source and precision accuracy with 3D prints. In addition, this printer comes in different wavelengths (365nm, 385nm and 405nm) for cell viability.
Some important characteristics for scaffolds include rigidness, precise details, optical transparency and viability for cells. However, you may find that a single resin cannot do everything that is required.
There are hundreds of resins out in the market that have different properties. The M50 is an open source 3D Printer that allows for the use of different 3D materials. However, only a few can meet the requirements needed for a scaffold. There are some resins that offer biocompatibility, optical transparency, biodegradability different mechanical properties, etc. So depending on what you’re looking for, you may need to choose the appropriate resin for your research/project.
To print a scaffold we used the BV-007 Clear for our testing, we were able achieve features fine as 100μm for the frame and a gap size of 400μm. This resin provides an optical transparency for live-cell imaging. Furthermore, after additional curing this device was rigid and sturdy.