Researchers Use Aerosol Jet 3D Printing to Develop Neuronal Interface with More Anti-Inflammatory Ability

Share this Article

a) Schematic illustration of the mechanism for formation of nanogel-based membrane based on the self-assembly of OPC-incorporated amphiphilic polydimethylsiloxane-modified N, O-carboxylic chitosan (OPMSC), followed by hydrogel-bonding interaction of OPC. The TEM images display the network structure of b) PMSC and c) OPMSC spherical nanogels.

3D printing has been used in the past to help treat degenerative diseases, or at least make it easier to cope with them. In terms of neurodegenerative diseases, implanted prosthetic devices are often used, but adverse biological reactions in host tissues can result in signal failure. it’s important to create tissue that can mimic the mechanical and structural properties of neural implanted devices, and while flexible polymer-based implants have helped to alleviate some injuries, the mechanical stress doesn’t quite match brain tissue. That’s why a lot of research has been conducted about using conductive polymer (CP) composites or conductive hydrogels to coat the devices so the biocompatibility and electrochemical performance of neural electrodes can be improved.

Representative fluorescent images demonstrate tissue responses around the tip of the non-coated probe and the OPMSC-coated probe at days 2, 7, 14, and 28 post-implantation. (c) ED1 staining; (e) GFAP staining; (g) NeuN staining.

But, a team of researchers from China and Taiwan say that it’s more important to design biocompatible coatings for implanted devices that mimic mechanical and structural properties of brain tissues, so tissue responses after long-term utilization can be reduced.

The researchers believe that 3D nanostructural coatings should be developed for the insulated regions, and not the implant electrode sites, so implants can interface with nearby brain tissues with more stability. They explained their findings in a recently published paper, titled “Multifunctional 3D Patternable Drug-Embedded Nanocarrier-Based Interfaces to Enhance Signal Recording and Reduce Neuron Degeneration in Neural Implantation.”

“Although the nanomaterial-based substrate coatings incorporated into drug delivery systems such as poly(lactic-co-glycolic acid) (PLGA) nanoparticles, pHEMA, or PLGA nanoparticles-embedded matrix have been developed, these systems lack stable physical and chemical properties for reducing tissue responses, including an appropriate nanostructural interface, mechanical properties, and biofouling ability,” the researchers wrote. “Multifunctional drug-embedded coatings must be developed and integrated into the nanostructural neural interfaces to allow sustained release of bioactive molecules (anti-inflammatory drugs) and simultaneous construction of a brain tissue-mimic but bioinert microenvironment for reducing both acute and chronic inflammation reactions during long-term implantation.”

The researchers used aerosol jet 3D printing to develop a neuronal interface with prolonged anti-inflammatory ability, structural and mechanical properties that mimicked brain tissue, and a sustained nonfouling property in order to inhibit tissue encapsulation.

Using aerosol jet printing, the OPMSC suspensions were directly patterned on a neural probe to create an anti-inflammatory neural interface.

“With the integration of nanomanufacturing technology and multifunctional nanomaterials into the neural implants, we can extensively reduce the reactive tissue responses, provide continuous protection of surviving neurons, and ensure long-term performance reliability of implants,” the researchers explained.

They created a new 3D nanocarrier-based neural interface that could possibly be used to support long-term neural implantation, as well as achieve better therapy for chronic and degenerative diseases. The researchers used a “novel combination of antioxidative zwitterionic nanocarriers and nanomanufacturing technology” to make the interface. The team developed a new type of anti-inflammatory nanogel, based on the amphiphilic polydimethylsiloxane-modified N, O-carboxylic chitosan (PMSC) incorporated with oligo-proanthocyanidin (OPC), called OPMSC.

a) Optical microscopy image showing patterning morphology of PMSC and OPMSC arrays with a thickness of ≈30 µm obtained by aerosol jet printing. The red arrows indicate the patterned location. Comparison of PC12 cell patterning on b) PMSC and c) OPMSC arrays demonstrates that OPMSC can maintain structural stability in a biological microenvironment. d) An overview and SEM images of the flexible OPMSC-coated polyimide probe. e) SEM image showing a cross-sectional view of OPMSC-coated probe after washing with water.

“The natural OPC can be used as an anti-inflammatory drug due to its multipotent therapeutic effects on neurodegenerative diseases,” the researchers explained. “Furthermore, given the abundance of hydroxyl groups and the aromatic architecture, the semi-hydrophilic OPC can act as a structural stabilizer to help the self-adhesion of nanogels, making the structure evolve into a biostable 3D anti-inflammatory neural interface.”

The team directly fabricated OPMSC nanogels onto a membrane using aerosol jet printing technology, because it is a low-temperature technology. When developing neural implants, mechanical properties are the main concern, which is why the researchers conducted a tensile test, among other experiments, on their new 3D nanocarrier-based neural interface, which was also implanted into rodents.

“After short-term and long-term in vivo implantation, the OPMSC-coated neural probe displayed a relatively lower impedance value and much higher signal stability compared to noncoated probe,” the researchers concluded. “The ADC obtained by magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) demonstrated that the OPMCS-coated probe alleviated edema at the acute phase, and further reduced tissue trauma in the chronic phase. Immunostaining of anti-NeuN, anti-ED1, and anti-GFAP around the implanted site further demonstrated that the OPMSC-coated probe significantly reduced the population of activated microglia and astrocytes for all durations, resulting in increased survival 28 d after implantation. Such multifunctional nanostructured OPMSC-coated neural probes can provide a long-lasting functional neural interface for long-term neural implantation.”

Co-authors of the paper are Wei-Chen Huang, Hsin-Yi Lai, Li-Wei Kuo, Chia-Hsin Liao, Po-Hsieh Chang,Ta-Chung Liu, San-Yuan Chen, and You-Yin Chen.

Discuss this and other 3D printing topics at 3DPrintBoard.com or share your thoughts below.

Facebook Comments

Share this Article


Recent News

Industrial Design and Development Company Chooses EnvisionTEC for the Production of Accurate Prototypes

Additive Manufacturing Strategies: Call for Metal, Dental, and Medical 3D Printing Speakers



Categories

3D Design

3D Printed Art

3D Printed Food

3D Printed Guns


You May Also Like

Additive Manufacturing Strategies 2020: Sign Up for Our 3D Printing Startup Competition

Coming up in February 2020, the annual Additive Manufacturing Strategies summit, co-hosted by 3DPrint.com and SmarTech Markets Publishing, will be held in Boston for the third year running. This year, the event, titled...

Interview with Alexandre Donnadieu-Deray of 3YOURMIND

Alexandre Donnadieu-Deray is the Managing Director of the company 3YOURMIND. 3YOURMIND provides software to manage and optimize your end-to-end Additive Manufacturing workflows. There organization gives an interesting value proposition to their end users. They sit in between technical expertise as well as customer service.

Inside 3D Printing Seoul 2019 Day One

Inside 3D Printing Seoul is one of the world’s largest 3D printing shows. Set in the giant maelstrom that is Seoul, the show brings together people from all over the...

Presentations on 3D Printing Trends and Projects at RAPID 2019

I didn’t just visit companies at their booths during the recent RAPID + TCT – I made time in my schedule to attend a few interesting sessions as well, including...


Shop

View our broad assortment of in house and third party products.


Print Services

Subscribe To Our Newsletter

Subscribe To Our Newsletter

Join our mailing list to receive the latest news and updates from our 3DPrint.com.

You have Successfully Subscribed!