AccScience Publishing / MSAM / Volume 2 / Issue 1 / DOI: 10.36922/msam.52
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ORIGINAL RESEARCH ARTICLE

3D-Printed disposable nozzles for cost-efficient extrusion-based 3D bioprinting

Hamed I. Albalawi1,2,3 Zainab N. Khan1 Ranim H. Rawas1,2,3 Alexander U. Valle-Pérez1,2,3 Sherin Abdelrahman1,2,3 Charlotte A. E. Hauser1,2,3*
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1 Laboratory for Nanomedicine, Division of Biological and Environmental Science and Engineering (BESE), King Abdullah University for Science and Technology, Thuwal 23955-6900, Saudi Arabia
2 Computational Bioscience Research Center (CBRC), King Abdullah University of Science and Technology, Thuwal 23955, Saudi Arabia
3 Red Sea Research Center, King Abdullah University of Science and Technology, Thuwal 23955, Saudi Arabia
Submitted: 15 February 2023 | Accepted: 6 March 2023 | Published: 21 March 2023
© 2023 by the Author(s). This article is an open access article distributed under the terms and conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License ( https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/ )
Abstract

3D bioprinting has significantly impacted tissue engineering with its capability to create intricate structures with complex geometries that were difficult to replicate through traditional manufacturing techniques. Extrusion-based 3D bioprinting methods tend to be limited when creating complex structures using bioinks of low viscosity. However, the capacity for creating multi-material structures that have distinct properties could be unlocked through the mixture of two solutions before extrusion. This could be used to generate architectures with varying levels of stiffness and hydrophobicity, which could be utilized for regenerative medicine applications. Moreover, it allows for combining proteins and other biological materials in a single 3D-bioprinted structure. This paper presents a standardized fabrication method of disposable nozzle connectors (DNC) for 3D bioprinting with hydrogel-based materials. This method entails 3D printing connectors with dual inlets and a single outlet to mix the material internally. The connectors are compatible with conventional Luer lock needles, offering an efficient solution for nozzle replacement. IVZK (Ac-Ile-Val-Cha-Lys-NH2) peptide-based hydrogel materials were used as a bioink with the 3D-printed DNCs. Extrusion-based 3D bioprinting was employed to print shapes of varying complexities, demonstrating potential in achieving high print resolution, shape fidelity, and biocompatibility. Post-printing of human neonatal dermal fibroblasts, cell viability, proliferation, and metabolic activity were observed, which demonstrated the effectiveness of the proposed design and process for 3D bioprinting using low-viscosity bioinks.

Keywords
3D bioprinting
Nozzle connecter
Extrusion-based 3D printing
3D-printed nozzle
Disposable nozzles
Funding
King Abdullah University of Science and Technology (KAUST)
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Conflict of interest
There are no conflicts of interest to declare.
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Materials Science in Additive Manufacturing, Electronic ISSN: 2810-9635 Published by AccScience Publishing