How Bioprinting Works & How We Save You Time & Money
Despite the diversity in methods, the Excedr lease program is able to source all instrument types and can accommodate any brand preferences your end-user might have. Request an estimate today and see how leasing can discount your bioprinter’s price.
All equipment brands/models are available
The Advantages of Excedr’s Bioprinter Leasing Program:
- Eliminates the upfront cost of purchasing equipment by spreading its cost over time
- Minimizes equipment downtime with included complete repair coverage and preventive maintenance
- Takes advantage of potentially 100% tax deductible* payments, providing you significant cash-savings
- Expedites the administrative work needed for instrument procurement and logistics
- Conserves working capital, enabling you to reinvest in your core business and operations (staffing, inventory, marketing/sales, etc.)
- Accommodates all manufacturer and model preferences
*Please consult your tax advisor to determine the full tax implications of leasing equipment.
Bioprinting utilizes 3D printing technologies for a multitude of tasks and applications in the fields of medicine, bioengineering, and pharmaceuticals.
This technology, which consists of different fabrication techniques, such as extrusion-, laser-, and inkjet-based 3D bioprinting techniques, focuses specifically on cell and tissue growth, as well as the manufacturing of biomaterials for biomedical parts.
It’s considered a form of additive manufacturing (AM) and rapid prototyping. However, unlike 3D printers, 3D bioprinters is used to reconstruct biological material and create tissue-like structures from various regions of the body using cell-encapsulating hydrogel bioinks reinforced with extracellular matrix derived from decellularized tissue. Simply put, 3D bioprinting—in conjunction with bioreactor systems—can be used for engineering human tissue.
Different cell types and bioinks are used depending on what’s being fabricated. Each bioink can be made with a specific type of material composed of living cells and additional polymers, such as collagen, gelatin, hyaluronan, and nanocellulose, and knowing what properties each bioink has is critical to tissue engineering’s success. The main bioink properties that should be considered include viscosity, gelation, and crosslinking.
Crosslinking is a crucial step that significantly influences the mechanical and physicochemical characteristics of the bioprinted constructs and the cellular behavior of the incorporated cells in the bioink.
One of the most common materials used for hydrogel-based tissue engineering and drug delivery is alginate. It is a type of biocompatible hydrogel with a wide pore distribution and physical properties that can potentially be tailored to direct 3D cell growth and differentiation in vitro and in vivo. It shows strong crosslinking capabilities, and exhibits high viscosity and gelling properties.
In tissue engineering, the cell type used alongside a specific bioink depends on the tissue model. For example, if the model is the brain, then you might see neural stem cells being used alongside a polyurethane-based bioink.
Being able to print structures that mimic both micro- and macro-environments of human organs and tissue can be incredibly important in clinical trials and drug testing, as well as testing treatments for diseases.
Bioprinting has already aided in the creation of necessary biological materials and cells for medical procedures that involve repairing damaged tissues, as there is often a shortage of these things, and has the potential for so much more.
Key bioprinting applications include tissue engineering and regenerative medicine (TERM) and biomaterial and drug printing, printing living tissues, skin grafts, and organs, as well as tissue models for cancer research and drug and toxicology screening.
These applications are possible due in large part to the combination of nano-biomaterials and bioprinting, which has allowed for new opportunities in biofabrication, improving weaknesses in the biofabrication process and making the production of tissues and organs feasible.
Bioprinter Processes, Methods, & Price
The basic 3D bioprinting process is similar to the 3D printing process. However, bioprinting replaces 3D printer materials with cells and biomaterials. It consists of three distinct phases: pre-processing, processing, and post-processing.
The first step in bioprinting is pre-processing. It involves constructing a model using DICOM files and CAD softwares that the printer uses as a guide to print with.
A DICOM file is an image saved in the Digital Imaging and Communications in Medicine (DICOM) format, and contains an image generated by common medical imaging technologies such as CT and MRI scanners. CAD (computer aided-design) softwares aid in the creation, modification, analysis, or optimization of a design, and are commonly used in 3d printing technologies. Together they help scientists and engineers create 3D tissue models.
Pre-processing also typically involves choosing the materials and cells that will be used when printing, and obtaining a biopsy which provides the initial cells that will be expanded upon using cell culture methods.
Using a layer-by-layer approach, a tomographic reconstruction is applied to the images. A small sample of living cells, collected via the biopsy, is mixed with a solution that provides all the necessary nutrients needed to keep them alive.
This cell expansion technique is essential to ensure a large number of cells are available for mass production needs. This is what makes up the bioinks used to print the image.
After creating the necessary 3D model using CAD softwares and selecting the correct material and cell type, the bioinks and cells are placed in a printer cartridge that deposits the material into scaffolding or a structure that mimics the bodily tissue needed. However, where the materials for printing are placed, or how they’re used, depends on the fabrication technique.
The bioprinted tissue is then placed into an incubator, or bioreactor, that encourages cell growth and development. Typically, 3D printing biological constructs involve a biocompatible 3D scaffold in order to produce successful layer-by-layer generation of tissue-like three-dimensional structures. Commonly, these 3D structures lack the complexity of a real organ.
These reconstructed organs do not function as efficiently or effectively as their real counterparts due to their lack of blood vessels, tubules, and ability to grow new cells. However, tissues, cells, and biomaterials are easily reproducible under the current conditions of 3D bioprinting
In the final step of bioprinting, maturation of bioprinted cells is governed by providing conditions that enable cell growth and development. This process creates a stable structure from the biological material. In recent years, bioreactors have been used to enable faster maturation, vascularization of tissues, and the possibility of transplant survival.
There are three main approaches to 3D bioprinting. These include autonomous self-assembly, biomimicry, and the microtissue approach:
This approach attempts to address the limitations of other approaches such as biomimicry. The conceptual reasoning involved in autonomous self-assembly is that an external influence, like a 3D scaffold, is not necessary with the correct embryonic environment.
This approach relies instead on proper structural elements to help with the construction of tissues and organs. It is believed that these cells are capable of self-organizing and interacting to create raw materials on their own to aid the development of maturation. This is, in short, an attempt to create embryonic autonomy.
Also referred to as a biomimetic approach, it attempts to engineer every component of native tissue. Every aspect of a target tissue is created using external influence, in an attempt to mimic natural occurrences and mechanics.
This can become incredibly complex based on the type of biological material being reproduced and its varying levels of cellular interaction. Biomimicry looks to minimize these complexities using the appropriate 3D scaffolding material and an ideal bioreactor.
Lastly, this approach is sometimes referred to as mini-tissue, and can be seen as a combination of biomimicry and autonomous self-assembly. The concept relies on the similarities of in vitro tissue that are composed of many small and simple units that work together to make up the whole. Implementing this, bioprinting techniques are used to form the smallest units of a target tissue which can then be combined to make up the final whole tissue.
High-Resolution 3D Bioprinter Leases to Fit Every Need
Although bioprinting technology has only recently seen significant advancements, it has already shown that it has the potential to help countless lives.
Although there still remains much to be learned, the technology is positioned to be a disruptive and beneficial method in many fields of medicine and pharmaceuticals.
While purchasing 3D bioprinters, and lab equipment in general, can pose burdensome financial hurdles, leasing is an excellent alternative that the life sciences has explored much less than many other industries.
We offer comprehensive lease programs that spreads the cost of your machinery out over time, and includes preventative maintenance and repair coverage.
Contact us today to learn more about leasing 3D bioprinters, 3D printers, or any other additive manufacturing technology.
This off-balance sheet financing structure provides three options at the end of the term. The lessee has the option to return the equipment to the lessor, renew at a discounted rate, or purchase the instrument for the fair market value. Monthly payments are also 100% tax deductible which yields additional monetary savings.
If you recently bought equipment, Excedr can offer you cash for your device and convert your purchase into a long-term rental. This is called a sale-leaseback. If you’ve paid for equipment within the last ninety days, we can help you recoup your investment and allow you to make low monthly payments. This also frees up money in your budget rather than tying it down to a fixed asset.
3D Bioprinter Manufacturers & Models on the Market
Thermo Fisher Scientific:
BIO X, INKREDIBLE +, INKREDIBLE
Cellink Life Sciences:
BIO X, BIO X6, INKREDIBLE, Lumen X
3D Bioplotter Starter Series, 3D Bioplotter Developer Series, 3D Bioplotter Manufacturer Series
3DDiscovery Evolution, BioFactory
Allevi 1, Allevi 2, Allevi 3
Rokit Healthcare, Inc.:
Dr. Invivo 4D
NovoGen MMX Bioprinter
Inventia Life Science Operations: