A groundbreaking study by researchers at Pohang University of Science and Technology introduces an innovative 3D printing technique for artificial small-diameter vessels (SDVs). Overcoming the challenge of lacking endothelial layers in existing SDVs, the team utilized advanced dragging 3D printing technology. The resulting vessels, infused with human cells, autonomously formed endothelium through strategically designed pores, achieving remarkable stability and mechanical properties. This breakthrough eliminates the need for additional processing steps in SDV fabrication.
Addressing a critical gap in artificial small-diameter vessels (SDVs), a team of researchers from Pohang University of Science and Technology has pioneered a revolutionary 3D printing technique. The challenge of thrombosis in existing SDVs, lacking a uniform endothelial layer, prompted the collaboration. Recently published in the journal Bioactive Materials, their research introduces an advanced dragging 3D printing technique, enabling the fabrication of SDVs with strategically designed pores.
Unlike traditional methods, this technique doesn't require extra materials or devices and offers precise control over pore size. The team infused the resulting vessels with a natural polymeric bio-ink containing human umbilical vein endothelial cells (HUVECs) and human aortic smooth muscle cells (HAoSMCs). Remarkably, the HUVECs migrated through the pores, establishing an endothelium within the artificial SDVs. The extent of coverage depended on the pore size, with up to 97.68 ± 0.4% surface coverage achieved.
Professor Jinah Jang emphasized the significance of this research, stating, "This marks the first use of advanced dragging 3D printing technology for the development of spontaneous cellular assembly small diameter vessels (S-SDVs)." The vessels demonstrated robust stability and mechanical characteristics, making them suitable for transplantation and showcasing potential applications in complex vascular structures.
The approach not only overcomes the thrombosis challenge but also eliminates the need for additional processing steps in SDV fabrication. The vessels autonomously form their endothelium solely through strategically designed pores. This groundbreaking technique positions itself at the forefront of advancements in tissue-engineered blood vessels.
In conclusion, the collaborative efforts of researchers at Pohang University of Science and Technology have led to a pioneering breakthrough in 3D-printed small-diameter vessels. The advanced dragging 3D printing technology, coupled with strategically designed pores, enables the autonomous formation of endothelium within the artificial vessels. Achieving remarkable stability and coverage, up to 97.68%, this innovative approach eliminates the need for additional processing steps, marking a significant leap forward in the fabrication of artificial blood vessels with enhanced mechanical properties.