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Home Industry News 3D-printed patch ‘can help to guide growth of new blood vessels’

3D-printed patch ‘can help to guide growth of new blood vessels’

15th June 2017

A new study has shown how 3D-printed patches infused with cells can be used to help regenerate blood vessels in the treatment of ischaemia.

The Boston University College of Engineering research has found that using a patch with a preorganised architecture of endothelial cells can foster the growth of new vessels, while avoiding some of the problems of current approaches.

Although therapeutic angiogenesis – which involves the injection of growth factors to encourage new vessels to grow – is seen as a promising approach, the new branches that grow are often disorganised, meaning blood cannot flow efficiently.

This new research solves this problem through the use of a pre-designed patch, printed at a 100 micron scale, with multiple designs tested to evaluate which patterns worked the best.

Study leader Professor Christopher Chen said: "The preorganised architecture of the patch helped to guide the formation of new blood vessels that seemed to deliver sufficient blood to the downstream tissue."

Further research will aim to improve the scalability of the patches, while experimenting with different architectures to see if there is a structure that works better.

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