BioAssemblyBot is a robotic platform used to build and assemble a variety of living and non-living structures and devices. Today it is used to produce tissues and tissue models for drug discovery, personalized medicine, and regenerative therapeutics. I just had a chat with its inventor, Michael Golway, CEO & Founder of Advanced Solutions.
What differentiates BioAssemblyBot from other 3D bioprinters?
Unlike traditional 3D bioprinters, BioAssemblyBot utilizes a freely moving robotic arm to print in multiple axes and perform additional tasks all related to tissue, tissue model, and soft device fabrication. Because of its ability to position a printhead or fabrication tool in six-axes of freedom, BioAssemblyBot can 3D print on or within complex surfaces and structures. Users are contour printing on 3D anatomical models, adding to existing tissue constructs, filling device cavities, printing within microfluidic devices and bioreactors, and injecting into 3D objects all with the high precision of a robotic arm.
What kind of biomaterials can the device print out or print with?
BioAssemblyBot can print any material that can be dispensed through a syringe in a temperature range of 0 to 110 Celsius. BioAssemblyBot empowers scientists to design, prototype, and manufacture complex tissue systems, including those involving solely living cells of various types without traditional scaffolding.
In what situations do you think the device would be a helpful addition to a healthcare setting?
BioAssemblyBot adds value to the healthcare setting through rapid prototyping and modeling of patient anatomy.
“Patient-specific, 3D anatomical models are created from standard medical images like MRI’s and CT scans.”
The handheld models provide surgeons both strategy and insight with certain operations that result in a better patient outcome (e.g. less surgery time, quicker recovery, etc.) and medical device developers a means to prototype and test new device designs.
The goal for the BioAssemblyBot technology platform is to robotically build replacement human tissues for damaged or diseased body parts. The advancements for this next chapter are exciting and expansive in research labs across the globe today. Simple therapeutic tissues made from living human cells will begin to emerge for vascularized bone, tendon, ligament and cornea repair. Longer term, tissue 3D printing capabilities will grow to encompass complex applications for partial organ repair and eventual whole organ replacements in the body.
Do you have case studies that show how useful the device can be?
We are fortunate and humbled to work with some of the smartest scientists and bioengineers on the planet using the BioAssemblyBot technology platform to advance the field of regenerative medicine. A few case studies for consideration include Dr. Sean Wu at Standford, Dr. Christophe Marquette at the University of Lyon, Dr. Vahid Serpooshan at Georgia Tech, and Dr. Rohan Shirwaiker at NC State University (“New technique uses ultrasound to align living cells in 3D bioprinted tissues”).
Further, our vascularization R&D lab in Manchester, NH is a global leader in understanding, building and repairing blood vessels. The team has decades of published work in this area that is now being applied to BioAssemblyBot 3D printing human tissues and tissue models in a variety of applications.