Stratasys Ltd., an Israeli-based international leader in 3D printing, has extended its commitment to the medical industry with the new J750 Digital Anatomy 3D Printer, which is being tested in part at the Jacobs Institute on the Buffalo Niagara Medical Campus.
The new printer is designed to replicate the feel, responsiveness and biomechanics of human anatomy in medical models, with a goal to improve surgical preparedness and training that can help hasten bringing new medical devices to market.
Officials with the Buffalo-based institute said the 3D testing there helps improve its goal of re-creating patient-specific anatomy to help surgeons better prepare for procedures that take place on the floors below it at the Kaleida Health Gates Vascular Institute, a leading international stroke and cardiac care facility.
“We believe in the potential of 3D printing to provide better health care, and the Digital Anatomy 3D Printer is a major step forward,” added Stratasys Healthcare Business Unit Head Eyal Miller in a news release. “We’re giving surgeons a more realistic training environment in no-risk settings. We also anticipate this will enable medical device makers to improve how they bring products to market by performing design verification, validation, usability studies and failure analysis with these new models.”
The new 3D printer has been tested at several organizations. The Jacobs Institute – a medical innovation center focused on accelerating device development in vascular medicine, has been testing it to re-create key vascular components for advanced testing and training.
“3D printing has been wonderful for re-creating patient-specific anatomy compared to cadavers or animal models; however, the final frontier for organ model realism has been live-tissue feel and biomechanical realism,” said Dr. Adnan Siddiqui, a GVI neurosurgeon, chief medical officer with the institute, and vice chairman and professor of neurosurgery at the Jacobs School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences.
“That’s exactly what the Digital Anatomy 3D Printer gives us. We believe these models give us the best opportunity to re-create human physiological conditions to simulate actual clinical situations and to study new devices to establish their effectiveness before introducing them to patients.”
Stratasys also reported that along with the new 3D printer, it is introducing three new materials – TissueMatrix, GelMatrix and BoneMatrix – used to create cardiac, vascular and orthopedic 3D printing applications. A Blood Vessel Cleaning Station that removes support material from inside 3D-printed blood vessels is also being released.