January 2025, 12th edition, The Netherlands
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The Future of newly built organs
3D Bioprinting is the utilization of 3D printing and 3D printing–like techniques to combine cells, growth factors, and biomaterials to fabricate biomedical parts that maximally imitate natural tissue characteristics.
3D Bioprinting holds much promise in advancing medicine as tool to replicate cellular complexity of tissue environment, ex vivo for drug screening and as a means of engineering well-defined functional tissue units for transplantation (scaffolds, which can be used to regenerate joints and ligaments).
3D Bioprinting generally follows three steps:
- Pre-bioprinting, the process of creating a model that the printer will later create and choosing the materials that will be used.
- Bioprinting, mixture of cells, matrix, and nutrients (bioinks) are placed in a printer cartridge and deposited using the patients’ medical scans.
- Post-bioprinting, creation of a stable structure from the biological material.
For 3D Bio printing there are three main approaches:
- Autonomous self-assembly
- Combination of both, also called mini-tissue building blocks
The first edition of this conference took place in 2014. Since then the conference took place on an annual base.
3D Dental Printing
Disrupting the traditional workflow
3D printing is taking its place for dental, orthodontic, stomatological and maxillofacial applications. 3D Dental Printing is part of the overall Digital dentistry which refers to the use of dental technologies or devices that incorporates digital or computer-controlled components to carry out dental procedures rather than using mechanical or electrical tools.
With 3D Printing, dental practices and prosthesis laboratories can disrupt their traditional workflow and completely dematerialise their work processes, which leads to increased efficiency, cost savings, faster production speeds and improved quality. Digitization has also allowed for better cataloguing and patient-specific care.
But still a lot of research and development has to be done in order to continuously improve the endresult for the patient and the workflow for the dental professional.
The first edition of this conference took place in 2017. Since then the conference took place on an annual base.
The target group for this conference covers a broad field, from dentists to hospitals and from research to manufacturing. The overlap with other 3D Medical printing applications such as 3D Bioprinting and 3D Medtech Printing in an interesting area to explore.
3D Medtech Printing
From medical implants to medical devices
The 3D MedTech printing market can be categorized as medical implants, surgical guides, surgical instruments and medical devices. The medical implant segment is expected to grow at the fastest rate among all applications in the coming years.
Orthopaedic manufacturers are turning to 3D Printing to drive the long term change in the increased complexity of medical implant design and demand for tailor made patient-specific solutions, with all the benefits that can bring. These implants can promote patient recovery, as often it is the only alternative to amputation. Thin scaffolds that perfectly follow the contour of a bone or porous metal parts are easily manufacturable opening the door to many applications and designs that were not previously possible (including facial bones, radius and ulna).
Surgical guides allow docters to physically handle and visualize the anatomical model that is specific to the patient about to undergo surgery. This enables the surgeon to get to know the patient’s exact anatomy from multiple angles and anticipate what to expect during the operation. In addition to increased accuracy, improved safety, time saving, the guide is also a tool to inform / explain the patient how the operation will take place.
Surgical instruments / Medical Devices
Surgical instruments, like forceps, hemostats, scalpel handles and clamps can be produced using 3D printers. Creating personalised surgical instruments offers many benefits. They facilitate faster and less traumatic procedures, increase a surgeon’s dexterity and support better surgery outcomes.
It is clear that the production of 3D Printed medical devices provides a relatively fast and effective solution for complex surgical cases. However, there are still numerous challenging open issues in 3D Medtech Printing, which will be covered during the conference.
Topics of the conference are:
- design/printing/post-printing validation
- printing characteristics and parameters
- physical/mechanical assessment of final devices
- biological consideration of final devices (including cleaning, sterility and biocompatibility)
The first edition of this conference took place in 2015. Since then the conference took place on an annual base.
3D Pharma Printing
The roadmap for 3D Pharma Printing towards clinical applications
As a new technology for the pharmaceutical industry, we foresee that 3D Printing will follow its growth path according to the following logical steps. Starting in the research laboratories (universities) with first applications in university hospitals. With that knowledge gained the next step will be the top clinical hospitals. By that time the experience both in production and compounding will reach such a level that the general hospitals and community pharmacies can start using it on a larger scale. Dependent on their level of innovation, compounding companies will join the 3D Pharma Printing bandwagon somewhere during this process.
This whole process will take some time, as legislation and certification will play an important role, next to the further development of the applied technologies.
It is important to realise that this technology offers new applications which impact the prescribing role of physicians. This technology goes beyond the ‘regular’ prescription protocols, so it is of paramount importance that physicians and general practitioners need to learn about the applications of 3D Pharma printing as well, next to the pharmacists off course.
Topics of the conference
- Faster pre-clinical evaluation of new drugs
- New formulations for improved drug delivery
- Patient-centric design / personalised medicine
- Local manufacture / Simplified logistics
- Reduced wastage
- Regulation / Certification
- Safety / Quality control
The first edition of this conference for the pharmaceutical industry took place in 2017. Since then the conference took place on an annual base.
Beyond 3D Printing
Using 3D models for other applications like 4D Printing or AR/VR or others
From medical implants to medical devices, the 3D Medical Printing Series covers all aspects of 3D Printing for the medical profession. But at the same time there are several technologies which can be applied in addition or next to 3D Printing, like 4D printing, digital twins, 3D modelling, AI, smart glasses, VR, AR or Extended reality.
4D printing technology in medical engineering
4D printing means “Additive Manufacturing (3D Printing) of objects able to self-transform, in form or function, when they are exposed to a predetermined stimulus, including osmotic pressure, heat, current, ultraviolet light, or other energy sources”. With the 3D printing methods, the manufacturing of the objects is based on the three geometrical axes x, y, and z, but in 4D printing, there is a new dimension, the “time” dimension. This does not represent the time taken to carry out the printing. Instead, it represents the passage of time while objects undertake shape transformation and are mentioned as the main difference between 3D and 4D printing.
Have a look at the differences between 3 and 4D printing technologies in the table below.
Even though many advancements have been made, 4D printing is nevertheless at an initial stage. Therefore, more research is required on 4D printing technology parameters, including stimulus-responsive materials, imaging methods, additive manufacturing approaches, and stimulus. Also, the material restricts the advancement of 4D printing. The materials used for 4D printing should be sensitive; however, not all materials are stimulus-responsive materials, and not all stimulus-responsive materials can be used for printing devices.
The source of information about 4D printing in this page comes from the following paper: 4D printing technology in medical engineering: a narrative review.
Iman Sahafnejad-Mohammadi (Azad University, Iran), Mojtaba Karamimoghadam (Coventry University, UK), Ali Zolfagharian (Deakin University, Australia), Mohammad Akrami (University of Exeter, UK) & Mahdi Bodaghi (Nottingham Trent University, UK).
Publication: Journal of the Brazilian Society of Mechanical Sciences and Engineering
Publisher: Springer Nature
Date: May 11, 2022
All the topics (4D printing, digital twins, 3D modelling, AI, smart glasses, VR, AR and Extended reality) will be integrated in the in the conference programme.
The first edition of this conference topic took place in 2020. Since then the conference topic returned to the 3D medical Printing Series annually. It will become more and more important that physical models and virtual models will be used next to each other to give the doctor and / or the patient a better insight in the treatment.
The next wave of electronic devices for healthcare
Bioelectronics is the application of electrical engineering principles to biology, medicine, behavior or health. The focus of this conference is on Printing electronics and 3D printing electronics.
Printing Electronics for healthcare
Printed electronics is an all-encompassing term for the printing method used to create electronic devices by printing on a variety of substrates. Originally, printed electronics related to organic or plastic electronics that use one or more inks made of carbon-based compounds. As demand for wearable devices and thinner electronics expands, printed electronics are being used to form flexible keyboards, antennas, electronic skin patches, and more.
The health sector is one of the segments that have the potential for printed and flexible electronics. Monitoring patients comfortably and preferably in their home environment is one example. We are seeing growth in Printed Electronics devices inspired, intelligent monitoring systems (f.i. ECG, EEG, and sleep diagnostics) that are not attached to your body with cables. Such devices are small in size, lightweight, and have a form factor that is comfortable for the patient.
Another application, the Biosensor
Biosensors offer a feasible solution to a variety of issues. These are Wearable electronic devices, a more advanced feature of Printed Electronics; embedded into everyday objects, used to monitor vital signs and spot significant biological abnormalities.
Printed Flexible wearable electronics, including Ion-sensor arrays, biosensor chips, or vital sensor patches, are receiving much interest due to their widespread use in the field of healthcare. Sensors made out of Printed Electronics technology operate continuously to ensure continuous monitoring of healthcare.
This market is growing rapidly and is an important extension to the other 3D printing sessions during this conference.
3D Printing Electronics for healthcare
As the world of 3D-printing is evolving, electronics is quickly becoming a new key player. Functional elements such as sensors, switches and printed circuit boards are now being integrated into 3D-printed products, paving the way for exciting new markets, applications, opportunities and new form factors particularly for the health care market!
On the crossroads of science, technology and business in 3D-printing electronics the speakers will fill you in on the latest breakthroughs, cutting edge research and business opportunities. Learn about printed and 3D-printed embedded electronics in healthcare.
This session is a platform and information interface enabling an exchange of informations on market requirements, research interests and current results, skills and resources as well as facilitating the building of future partnerships. Academics, engineers, designers, and managers are invited to lecture on their state-of-the-art developments and future prospects or display their products and offers as exhibitor.
The first edition of this conference took place in 2020. Since then the topic was covered on an annual base.