“Thank you for the opportunity to present to your class! I hope you found the talk interesting and, perhaps even inspiring. This blog post is my attempt to share content that was presented in-class in a creative and engaging way. It’s now yours to explore!” — Luc Lalande, Executive Director, uOttawa Entrepreneurship Hub
So you think 3D printing that I showcased during my talk is cool? Here are examples of much more ambitious projects that demonstrate just what this technology can do.
The above photo (see article link) is of 6-year old Sebastian Chavarria trying out his new 3D printed prosthetic hand designed and fabricated at the University of Ottawa Makerspace. Medical applications of 3D printing are diverse and entering an exciting phase of development.
“Using the 3D-printed model of Ariana’s aorta, we performed a ‘practice-run’ or simulation in the cath lab, where we actually placed a stent into the model,” said Dr Daniel Turner of the Children’s Hospital of Michigan. Source: IB Times
3D Printing Human Skin Is Almost A Reality
The printed organs coming to a body near you. From kidneys to hands, 3D printers are churning out made-to-order bones and rudimentary organs.
The increasing sophistication of 3D printing is shown in an ear that melds biological and electronic parts. Scientists are looking ahead to radical emerging technologies that use live cells as ‘ink’, assembling them layer-by-layer into rudimentary tissues …
In the photo at the very top of this blog post, I featured a beautiful image of a bio-art installation conceived by Andrew and graduate student Daniel Modulevsky.
In Re-Purposed 46, Modulevsky and Pelling present preserved, lab-grown specimens of apples containing human cells. This work represents a ‘physical biohack’ in which apples have been re-purposed as a supporting matrix for living, artificial human tissues. [more …]
I also referred to Andrew’s amazing work with respect to DIY (Do-It-Yourself) scientific instruments such as the CO2 incubator (older prototype pictured) and more recently, a benchtop shaker-agitator and a twitter-controlled microscope.
Seriously, how cool can you get? But wait, there’s more.!
Andrew and Daniel are part of a growing global community of DIYbio innovators including Connor Dickie, co-Founder and CEO of Synbiota, Inc. (check out his presentation at the 2014 Innovative City Forum in Tokyo)
Based in Toronto, Connor co-founded Synbiota to accelerate the development of new medicines, materials, food and fuel by combining Synthetic Biology and the Open Web.
Ok … so you may be thinking DIYbio stuff is on the fringe but this is exactly why the field is so fertile for exploration and discovery. Get yourself to BioCoder, the “newsletter of this revolution”.
“It’s about biology as it moves from research labs into startup incubators, hacker spaces, and even homes. It’s about a very old programming language that we’re just beginning to understand, and that’s written in a code made up of organic chemicals. It’s the product of a sharing community of scientists that stretches from grade school to post docs and university faculty.” — BioCoder
Citizen Science is another exciting frontier for entrepreneurial innovators and we are just starting to see the potential of this emerging movement.
Remember that Tricorder medical device on Star Trek?
Well, the future might be much closer than you think as the Tricorder XPrize competition reaches its final stage.
The Qualcomm Tricorder XPRIZE is a $10 million global competition to stimulate innovation and integration of precision diagnostic technologies, helping consumers make their own reliable health diagnoses anywhere, anytime.
7 finalists were recently announced and among them is a team of undergraduate students from John Hopkins University (pictured below). Wow!