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Source: The post is based on the article “Smart gel-based sheet can form 3D Printed Conduit helping non-invasive nerve repair” published in PIB on 3rd May 2023
What is the News?
Scientists have developed a new smart gel-based sheet using three-dimensional (3D) printing technology.
This gel-based sheet can self-roll into a tube during surgery to form a nerve conduit which could help reduce the complexity of surgeries and aid rapid healing of nerve injuries.
What is the current treatment for nerve injuries and what has been developed?
Currently, the treatment of peripheral nerve injuries is still autografts. Bioresorbable polymer-based conduits are also being explored for clinical use as alternatives.
But these treatment strategies suffer from several limitations such as donor site morbidity in the case of autografts and the necessity for sutures that demand highly skilled microsurgeries.
These clinical shortcomings motivated researchers to design a smart gel-based sheet using three-dimensional (3D) printing technology that can self-roll into a tube during surgery to form a nerve conduit.
This could help reduce the complexity of surgeries and aid the rapid healing of nerve injuries.
What is 3D Printing?
What is 4D Printing?
4D printing relates to an advanced version of 3D printing where the fourth dimension is time.
This fourth dimension refers to the concept of self-assembly wherein the 3D printed object can reshape or self-assemble itself on the application of external passive energy like heat, gravity, magnetics, or simply hot water.