Exploring new possibilities in tissue engineering and bio-printing
Tissue engineering is a multidisciplinary field that aims to restore, improve or replace the function of biological tissue. Often, this involves making 3-dimensional scaffolds to guide the growth of native or implanted cells. The development of technologies such as 3D printing and bio-printing have enabled exciting advances in scaffold manufacture, but sometimes the design of these scaffolds is overlooked.
Pi-A used principles from architecture and procedural design to develop new ways of designing and making the scaffolds, with inspiration from nature. The repeating structure that makes a butterfly’s wing iridescent is perfect for a hollow vascularised tissue, and virtual blood vessels can be 'grown' to give a branching structure. This leads to a new aesthetic and very exciting possibilities for design at a much smaller scale.