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Combining Dual 3D Bioprinting and Regional Bioactive Factors to Make Vascularized Bone Construct

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Vascular Capillary Network Immunofluorescence staining of the vascularized bone construct. Mesenchymal stem cells (red) surrounding epithelial stem cells (green).
Haitao Cui
Wei Zhu
Lijie Grace Zhang
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Brian Coblitz
Sr. Licensing Associate (202) 994-4345
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Vascularized Biphasic Tissue Constructs

US Patent Pending 2019-0030212
Hierarchical Fabrication of Engineered Vascularized Bone Biphasic Constructs via Dual 3D Bioprinting: Integrating Regional Bioactive Factors into Architectural Design
Advanced Healthcare Materials, 2016 September ; 5(17): 2174–2181

GW researchers generated a vascularized and highly osteogenic bone construct with a biphasic structure using a multiple 3D printing platform. Traditional tissue engineering techniques face major obstacles in creating multiple tissue structures and vascularization of tissues. 3D bioprinting allows for control over the location of cells and biomaterials; however monotypic model printing has limitations in creating multi-structured tissues. Vascularization is essential to prevent cell death in internal regions of large implants.

Our solution, dual 3D bioprinting, utilizes fused deposition modeling (FDM) and stereolithography (SLA). The dual platform creates a bone-mimicking construct with a soft organic matrix surrounding a hard mineral structure. The construct has a network of large vessels and smaller capillaries. This is done by alternate deposition of biodegradable polylactic acid (PLA) fibers and cell-laden gelatin methacrylate (GelMA) hydrogels. Bone Morphogenic Protein 2 (BMP2) and vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) are regionally immobilized onto the scaffolds to promote osteogenesis and angiogenesis. This served as a proof of concept and future research will expand the multiple 3D printing platform to other types of tissue regeneration.


  • Manufacturing 3D printed vascularized bone implants


  • Regional immobilization of bioactive factors
  • Suitable for large bone implants