BST participates in and coordinates the RAPIDOS project, in which a European and Chinese consortium will conduct research on the tissue engineering of bone using custom-made biologically active composite scaffolds formed by rapid prototyping techniques. The project aims to integrate imaging- and information technologies, biomaterials and process engineering, and biological and biomedical engineering for truly translational bone repair solutions. Among the European partners, the University of Twente, the AO Foundation in Davos, the School of Engineering and Materials Science at the Queen Mary University of London and Xpand Biotechnology BV will collaborate. From China, three renown partners, the Shanghai Key Laboratory of Orthopaedic Implants, the Shenzhen Institutes of Advanced Technology and the Institute of Orthopaedics of Chinese People’s Liberation Army General Hospital will be involved. At BST, Mike Geven has recently been appointed as a PhD student within RAPIDOS under guidance of professor Dirk Grijpma.
The project will focus on blow-out orbital floor fractures, often caused by traffic accidents. Such fractures are challenging to repair as orbital floor fracture results in thin bone fragments, a disrupted blood supply and often a damaged periosteum, providing a poor environment for bone healing. Untreated fractures result in inadequate ocular globe support and increased orbital volume, resulting in altered ocular globe function. Utilizing scaffolds as temporary supports for orbital floor repair faces several technical issues, as these scaffolds need a three dimensional anatomical fit to the fracture. In addition, they require adequate mechanical stability, degradation kinetics and a suitable macrostructure for the delivery of biological effectors and cell integration.
Mike’s work will be on the preparation of custom composite scaffolds by stereolithography. These high resolution scaffolds will be designed to possess an adequate internal structure and shape based on CT-scan image data to optimize tissue integration. Furthermore, the incorporation of osteoinductive calcium phosphate and osteopromotive icaritin is investigated to form scaffolds that promote bone formation.
For more information on the RAPIDOS project and on its consortium, please visit the project website at http://rapidos-project.eu/.