CELLINK, the young Swedish startup that is rapidly becoming a leader in desktop bioprinting, released two new bioinks that scientists can utilize to take the bioprinting of human tissues and organs to the next level.
The first of these, CELLINK A, is made out of ultrapure alginate and is one of the new bioinks that many of CELLINK’s customers have been asking for. CELLINK A is a biodegradable bioink that is excellent for applications where the scaffold material must be replaced by native tissue in-vivo.
Traditionally, scientists and medical device companies have been using alginate gels for cell encapsulation and 3D cell culturing. “However – saysDr. Hector Martinez, CTO of CELLINK – such 3D structures often lack the control of scaffold architecture. Bioprinting of tissues with a complex, anatomically shaped architecture, requires a process that can spatially control the placement of cells, biomaterials and biological molecules.“
Such complex human tissues can be biofabricated using CELLINK’s INKREDIBLE bioprinter together with the optimized portfolio of biocompatible bioinks. And now, scientists can also use CELLINK A for their bioprinting experiments. Tissue scientists and engineers have been studying and tailoring alginate biomaterials for the regeneration of tissues such as cartilage, bone, pancreas, liver and the heart.
“Since alginate has become a widely used biomaterial in many tissue engineering applications, CELLINK A has already found a good acceptance in the bioprinting sphere with early beta testers” says Dr. Hector Martinez.
Novel products based on alginate have been approved for implantation in humans and the use of alginate as a bioink could potentially narrow the gap between in-vitro research and clinical application from a regulatory stand point. CELLINK is moving in the right direction by making it more accessible for scientist to find other novel applications for alginate in drug screening, disease modeling and tissue regeneration.
“CELLINK A is conveniently crosslinked using the same binding agent that is offered with the original CELLINK bioink to make things as simple as possible for the end-users. We want to ensure that our customers concentrate their valuable time on what they do best: 3D cell culturing. Therefore is it important that our bioinks provide the highest level of reproducibility, quality, and ease of use”, says Ida Henriksson, CBO of CELLINK.
CELLINK is also releasing SUPPORTINK, a specifically designed bioink that allows the bioprinting of complex 3D structures that require co-printing with a sacrificial material. The sacrificial structures printed with SUPPORTINK can easily be removed after the bioink, which contains the cells, has been printed and stabilized through crosslinking. Researchers can use SUPPORTINK to co-print vascular-like structures within a tissue model. After removing the sacrificial bioink through simple rinsing, the tissue model will have an open vascular-like network that can be used for perfusion with oxygen- and nutrient-rich culture media.
The world of desktop bioprinting is once again following in the footsteps of traditional desktop 3D printing even though, at the rate companies like CELLINK are innnovating, it may soon surpass it.