Material From 3-D Printer Could Help You Grow Damaged Bones
The capabilities of 3-D printers are just starting to take off, making almost anything you can imagine or draw on a computer, including things like Steven Colbert’s head. But funny business aside, these printers also emerging as useful tool in medical settings as well due to their ability to make very specific, customized items.
The latest out of Washington State University is a bone — hot off the presses. Although not exactly like a bone, given the fact that it will dissolve eventually and that’s by design, the bone-like material is what researchers hope will act as “scaffolding” that when paired with actual bone will help facilitate growth.
Watch Susmita Bose, a professor in WSU’s School of Mechanical and Materials Engineering, explain the research and see the printer begin to work:
The researchers see the bone-like material being used in orthopedic procedures, dental work and to deliver medicine for treating osteoporosis, according to the press release. Paired with actual bone, it acts as a scaffold for new bone to grow on and ultimately dissolves with no apparent ill effects. Thus far, they have had success with the bone scaffolding on rats and rabbits.
The ProMetal 3D printer used by the researchers, which is designed to make metal objects, works by having an inkjet spray a plastic binder over a bed of powder in layers of 20 microns, about half the width of a human hair, the press release reports. Following a computer’s directions, it creates a channeled cylinder the size of a pencil eraser. The research found that the addition of silicon and zinc more than doubled the strength of the main material, calcium phosphate.
They have found that within a week in a medium with immature human bone cells, the scaffold was supporting a network of new bone cells.
- John McCain Lectures Tea Party Senator on How ‘Business’ Gets Done in Congress: ‘That’s What We’ve Been Doing for a Couple Hundred Years’ 537 Comments
- Boy Scouts of America Vote to Allow Gay Members 492 Comments
- Pope Francis’ Sermon Sparks Debate: ‘Even the Atheists’ Have Been Redeemed ‘With the Blood of Christ’ 474 Comments
- Piers Morgan Bans Dana Loesch From His Show Following Twitter Spat: ‘Show Some Bloody Respect’ 327 Comments
- ‘War in London Tonight’: Rioters Clash With Police Over ‘Cleaver’ Terror Attack (Plus: Read About Hero Mother Who Reportedly Confronted Killers) 295 Comments
- Game-Changing Bombshell? There’s a Major Twist in the Story About a High School Student’s Lesbian Relationship With a Minor 120 Comments
- Is the Boy Scouts’ Gay Amendment the ‘Beginning of the End’ for the Group? (Plus: Tell Us Where You Stand) 180 Comments
- MSNBC Hosts Martin Bashir and Chris Hayes Claim London Machete Killers Aren’t Terrorists: ‘These Are Just Murderers’ 131 Comments
- Did You Catch the Possibly Policy-Changing Ft. Hood Reference in Obama’s Terror Speech? Read More
- Dem. Rep. Apologizes for Attending ‘Racist, Anti-Semitic and Homophobic’ Speech Read More
- Have You Had Scotch at a NJ TGI Friday’s Lately? You Might Have Been Drinking Rubbing Alcohol Read More
- Venezuelan President Blames Toilet Paper Shortage on the Rich Read More
- This Terrible Chart Shows the Change in Food Stamp Participation Over the Last 10 Years Read More
- Disney Makes Absolutely Mortifying Photoshop Mistake Read More
- Trey Gowdy at It Again — This Time with a Jack Bauer Reference! 116 Comments
- Rocket Bike Sets Land Speed Record — and Uses a Fuel You Wouldn’t Expect Read More
- How 3D Printing Technology Created a Special Part for Baby’s Windpipe and Saved His Life Read More
- 6 Fascinating Spy Gadgets You’ll Probably Want (and Can Have) After Seeing Read More
- How Would a 3D-Printed Shotgun Slug Hold Up? Here’s the Test Read More
- The Incredible Role Facebook Played in the Aftermath of Devastating Okla. Tornado Read More
- IMF chief named key witness in French payoff case
- Obama: Sexual assault threatens trust in military
- Oklahoma gets far more than its share of disasters
- Cannes: Dern a leading man again in 'Nebraska'
- Yankees' Teixeira to play in minors on Wednesday
- Budget cuts mean unpaid day off for many in gov't
- Hezbollah: EU making big mistake
- Toronto mayor Rob Ford says he does not smoke crack cocaine