Three-dimensional (3D) printing technology allowed fast and cheap prototype fabrication in numerous segments of industry and it also became an increasingly versatile experimental platform in life sciences. Yet, general purpose software tools to control printer hardware are often suboptimal for bioprinting applications. Here we report a package of open source software tools that we developed specifically to meet bioprinting requirements: Machine movements can be (i) precisely specified using high level programming languages, and (ii) easily distributed across a batch of tissue culture dishes. To demonstrate the utility of the reported technique, we present custom fabricated, biocompatible 3D-printed plastic structures that can control cell spreading area or medium volume, and exhibit excellent optical properties even at 50 ul sample volumes. We expect our software tools to be helpful not only to manufacture customized in vitro experimental chambers, but for applications involving printing cells and extracellular matrices as well.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
- Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)