Scientific Research

For patients who need bone grafts, a 3D-printer could come to the rescue

For patients who need bone grafts, a 3D-printer could come to the rescue

Scientists have 3-D-printed splints for babies’ airways, faux brains to study cortical folding — and now they’ve done it with bone. A team of researchers at Northwestern University has created a highly flexible artificial bone that helps speed up recovery and that can be easily manipulated by surgeons in the operating room.

The “hyperelastic bone,” described in the journal Science Translational Medicine, could be cut, folded and sutured to tissues, and could pave the way toward cheaper, customized and more effective bone grafts.

“It really fulfills a...

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