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Computational Design, Freeform Fabrication and Testing of Nylon-6 Tissue Engineering Scaffolds

  • Suman Das (a1), Scott J. Hollister (a2), Colleen Flanagan (a2), Adebisi Adewunmi (a1), Karlin Bark (a1), Cindy Chen (a1), Krishnan Ramaswamy (a1), Daniel Rose (a1) and Erwin Widjaja (a1)...

Advanced and novel fabrication methods are needed to build complex three-dimensional scaffolds that incorporate multiple functionally graded biomaterials with a porous internal architecture that will enable the simultaneous growth of multiple tissues, tissue interfaces and blood vessels. The aim of this research is to develop, demonstrate and characterize techniques for fabricating such scaffolds by combining solid freeform fabrication and computational design methods. When fully developed, such techniques are expected to enable the fabrication of tissue engineering scaffolds endowed with functionally graded material composition and porosity exhibiting sharp or smooth gradients. As a first step towards realizing this goal, scaffolds with periodic cellular and biomimetic architectures were designed and fabricated using selective laser sintering in Nylon-6, a biocompatible polymer. Results of bio-compatibility and in vivo implantation studies conducted on these scaffolds are reported.

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