Triple lumen Bio-Printer head

by siderits, published

Triple lumen Bio-Printer head by siderits Nov 3, 2013
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Remember this is just a prototype so its ok to FPL (fling poo later) when it fails. Until then its just fun and interesting to test the limits of this new technology and look at some innovative designs. For example, objects for this project can't be injection molded or CNC milled (using conventional single process techniques) so additive manufacture seems perfect.

The attached files are various test prints to see if I can make parts for a Bio-Printer using the Form1. The parts are supposed to fit and adapt standard laboratory devices like syringes and Butterfly needles to the channels in the Bio-Print head. Turns out its easy, fast and accurate. Am considereing coating the inner channels with a lipid.

These particular parts are for a prototype Bio-Printer with double and triple lumen feed heads. There are connectors for pipettes, syringes and tubing.

They'll be attached to a simple Laser cut gantry controlled by EASYCNC-EZ DIY controller and MACH3 CAM software.

It's easy to create simple 3D shapes in a standard CAD program (I use trueSpace) and generate the G-Code in DeskProto to control the movements of the Bio-print head.

May I'll have a second program like LABVIEW control three 3D-printed syringe pumps or at least one solenoid valve with a Phidget SSR board. It might even be poosible to have the print head movement trigger the syrynge pumps separately.

I may want to do a mini-TopPrint with a cutter head doing a rough cut shape in a substance and then swap in the bio-print head and run a "Fine-cut" protocol to distribute the cells on a contoured surface.

Will first try small scale print maybe with Poppy seeds and some grow-matrix and then maybe cells from short term cell culture with two cell types and some collagen (or albumin) or possibly sterilized fungal matrix. Simple 3D printed tissue may be possbile to use for various types of testing. Seems like I can easily make the channels 100 microns and I can add an inner mixing chamber if needed. I'll add a side viewport for a camera as well.

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Hey Thorn144:

Three syringe pumps. Arduino Mega controlled running CNC libraries.
The idea was to deposit at least 3 different cell populations to create a 3D tissue matrix or tumor avatar. I used a Poison distribution of points in a solid with a Voronoi algorithm to open up the spaces in between the points (intersticies). The first "tissue analog came out looking little like a spherical sponge. I used Meshworks to do that part and tried different starting solid shapes created in a 3D CAD program called truespace. One of the most interesting was a branching cylinder inside of a sphere. The three types of cells or material were to be stromal matrix (collagen), stromal cells and epithelial cells (from culture). I wanted to use short term tumor cell culture as well. Truth is I got distracted by some other projects and didn't get back to this one. Hope this helps. R

Hi, I am interested in doing a project like this. What additive printer are you mounting the head on? You said can't be used with CNC milling but you used a CNC controller. Sorry I know this is an old project for you but I am looking at doing something similar for a project in school and could really use some ideas for mounting bioprint heads on top desktop printers.

Great stuff here, and interesting project. Somehow I wound up working in similar stuff too... applied physicist here. Hopefully I won't be working with anything living for a bit, but I am still interested in your progress. I have similar problems with small scale printing that a lost-wax system might fix. However, I am trying to take advantage of the photoelectric effect to initiate the reaction... would probably kill your cells. I was looking at using something like wood's alloy and a 3d printed mold. it melts at body temperature. You might also try a pressure sensitive substance. Print at a higher/lower pressure or temperature then use the pressure/temperature change to remove the material. Works very well for aerogels. I am preferential to ICE.

You're absolutely right. You can use the equivalent of the lost wax technique and melt out a substrate (like Tin-Bismuth metal) or even drill channels that intersect then back-fill a portion of the channel. It does becomes a little harder to make 100 micron structures that might need to be "sprued" while casting. You might also use PLA that can be dissolved out of ABS (if you use a dual extruder head). If however you need internal parts that move and either interleave or interlock and you want a closed system without any need for post processing or secondary assembly then additive manufacturing seems like a strong competitor for the cheapest channel making process. Thanks for your comment!

You can mold the "U" channel by using a metal insert that melts at a low temperature, or a dissolvable material. Obviously the per unit cost would be quite expensive. Validating that no foreign substance is left behind would be challenging. There are other methods that are cost competitive :)

OK, so I've subscribed to your youtube channel and here on thingiverse. You can check us on http://www.sensorica.co/http://www.sensorica.co/ , we have different projects going on. I'm the 3D concept/prototype/fabrication guy, my brother Tibi (the guy on the TEDx video) specializes in optics, Ivan is a biologist/physiologist, Jonathan is an electrical engineer, François is a chemmist, etc. This is just the core of our team here in Montreal but there are other members and the Network is growing fast now. Please get a sense of SENSORICA and you can join the mailing list, join or create new projects and attract people to help develop them. More and more labs around the world are turning their attention to this network and we'll eventually create a network of networks to make collaboration easier and accountable. Because we're in the Open Hardware business and want to become self-sustainable we are market oriented, so you can find collaborators and define the projects' ''value equasion'', you can log your time and your assets (tools, space, etc) and when the project reaches the market all the revenue is redistributed according to the pie chart to all collaborators in that project. Parts of one project can apply in orther projects and can be logged. Assets are evaluated by the VAS (Value Accounting System http://valnet.webfactional.com/accounting/process/387/http://valnet.webfactional.com... ) by their use, every time your part is used in any project it gains value, for example. I tried to resume this quickly but there is way more to it. Check it out if you're interested.

Hi: I heard the B9 is very capable and really flexible. I'd be delighted to collaborate. I just finished putting together a laser cut Pico-CNC platform with 2$ Steppers to mount the print head. I'm also looking at using the Makerbeam connectors that I've been putting up here on Thingiverse. Anyway it seems to work nicely. Am now thinking about 3D printing the parts for the Pico-CNC (maybe something that looks a little "sexier" than the 3D printed makerbeams. BTW, have you tried coating the lumen of the Bio-printhead with a hydrophobic layer. I've been considering a sequential combination of sterilized fungal matrix and oil to coat the
inner channels. You might also run cell membranes through until you get a layer of cell debris to coat the channels. Anyway, I think the lipid-matrix might give me the equivalent of a "shealth-layer"
laminar flow (like the old Flow Cytometers). I guess 'm mostly approaching this like its a hydrophobic layer problem (not unlike the the cinnamon challenge). By the way these print head steam sterilize beautifully. Cheers.

Hey, I (we) have a B9Creator in the lab and trying to print molds for matrigel, perfusion chambers, microfluidic chips, etc. the printer is capable (with some minor enhancements) but the problem is all resins we have purchased so far are killing the cells. Even UV post-cured for hours, molded with PCL, PDMS, formal coated, these resins are deadly. The B9Cs' projector shoots near UV, visible light, around 380 µm wavelength and it's a similar process to the Form1. If you happen to know a safe photopolymer (biocompatible) that can cure at this wavelength please send me a link or a recippe, please! If you don't mind, we can collaborate on your bioplotter project, we are an Open Innovation Network born out of Academia, full of bright minds, and I think we're on the same track here..


At least hamburger is easy, lettuce is the challenge.

Cool idea. Soon we'll be able to print steak.