Today Aether announced the formation of new research collaboration partnerships that will help push the field of 3D bioprinting forward, and help develop Aether 1 Bioprinter into an even better, more capable product.
Two stories have dominated recent media coverage of the 3D bioprinting field. One is the groundbreaking work being done by Queensland University of Technology (“QUT”) in Australia. The other is the unprecedented work being done in 3D skin printing and other areas of bioprinting by the Spanish National Research Council (“CSIC”).
Aether has now entered into Research Collaboration Agreements with both of these innovative institutions. Aether will support their research in any way possible, including creating customizations and new features, while the researchers supply Aether with valuable feedback, technical guidance, and creative new ideas.
In alignment with Aether’s long-term vision of a world where animal testing is no longer needed, QUT and CSIC have agreed to avoid live animal testing for the collaboration.
QUEENSLAND UNIVERSITY OF TECHNOLOGY
Aether will supply an Aether 1 Bioprinter beta unit to the Centre for Regenerative Medicine at QUT which is directed by Professor Dietmar W. Hutmacher.
QUT is one of very few universities to offer a graduate program in Biofabrication.
QUT has also been a lightning rod of innovation due to the university’s leadership in regard to the conceptualization of translating bioprinting into a hospital environment, which many believe will be able to provide an entirely new level of care and treatment to patients.
Dr. Nathan Castro and PhD students will utilize the Aether 1 Bioprinter in the Professor Hutmacher directed ARC Training Centre in Additive Biomanufacturing.
The Australian Research Council (“ARC”) is one of the Australian government’s two main agencies for allocating research funding to academics and researchers at Australian universities. It is the primary source of advice to the government on investment in the national research effort.
Prof. Hutmacher is the Professor and Chair of Regenerative Medicine at the Institute of Biomedical Innovation at QUT. He is one of the pioneers in the field of scaffold based tissue engineering. He and an interdisciplinary team from National University of Singapore (another university who will be collaborating with Aether) have translated a 3D printing concept from bench to bedside. They have developed biodegradable scaffolds which are FDA approved and CE marked. The Singapore based company, Osteopore International, estimates that thousands of patients have benefitted from the 3D printed scaffolds.
Over 30,000 citations from researchers on Google Scholar give testament that Prof. Hutmacher is a global thought-leader and pioneer of innovation in the fields of tissue engineering and regenerative medicine.
Aether believes that by granting a biomedical engineer, innovator, and educator like Prof. Hutmacher early access to the most powerful and capable 3D bioprinter ever created, excellent progress in the field is sure to follow.
SPANISH NATIONAL RESEARCH COUNCIL
Aether will also supply an Aether 1 Bioprinter beta unit to researchers at CSIC. CSIC is the largest public institution dedicated to research in Spain, and the third largest in all of Europe.
A recent paper titled “3D bioprinting of functional human skin: production and in vivo analysis” published in the journal Biofabrication based on the research conducted by CSIC researcher Nieves Cubo Mateo and others has been met with extreme excitement and new interest in the burgeoning field of 3D skin printing.
CSIC will use the Aether 1 Bioprinter beta unit to conduct experimental research involving the combination of multiple materials and multiple fabrication methods. CSIC research goals appear to be a perfect match for the capabilities of Aether 1. Aether will work with Nieves Cubo Mateo and researchers at CSIC to support their goals, and to provide the tools they need to propel their already incredible research to new heights.
UNIVERSITY OF CAMBRIDGE UPDATE
Recently Aether shipped the very first Aether 1 Bioprinter beta unit to the University of Cambridge. Cambridge is one of the most prestigious universities on Earth, and it has been amazing to work with such tremendous researchers.
Following this shipment, Aether CTO Eric Bennett took a nearly 2 week trip to the UK to work extensively with the phenomenal trailblazer Dr. Yan Yan Shery Huang’s Biointerface research group in person.
During this visit Aether was able to receive valuable feedback, discover and repair bugs and various issues, incorporate a custom module for their unique applications, and help support Dr. Huang’s research projects involving the intriguing new field of low-voltage continuous electrospinning patterning, as well as other research projects.
Aether looks forward to continuing to support the exceptional research happening at Cambridge, and to work together to develop and commercialize 3D bioprinting technologies.
Aether CEO Ryan Franks said “We’ve been totally blown away by the level of interest we’ve received. With QUT and CSIC I was literally reading articles about the outstanding work they were doing, and soon after received requests from them to be Aether beta users. It seems like almost everyone on the forefront of bioprinting innovation wants to expand the possibilities of their research by taking advantage of Aether 1’s unique capabilities. There’s still a lot of debugging to do and improvements to make, but at this point I believe Aether 1’s potential is obvious for all to see. It’s only a matter of time until this ‘beta’ printer becomes the highly refined and truly revolutionary machine that sparks the bioprinting revolution.”
Aether has been working aggressively to improve its production capacity, while simultaneously improving the printer, debugging, and solving the many problems that appear when developing a highly complex new technology. Aether’s goal is to ship out multiple units this month to research collaboration partners who have been patiently waiting to receive their beta printers, and then begin to build and test Aether 1 beta units to ship out to QUT, CSIC and other research collaborators Aether has not yet announced.
ABOUT AETHER AND AETHER 1
Aether is a San Francisco start-up and the creator of Aether 1 Bioprinter, the world’s most advanced 3D bioprinter.
Aether 1 allows users to print with up to 24 materials, use 8 different fabrication methods, and comes with 4 completely revolutionary automation features. Automation features like machine vision air pressure calibration, automatic X/Y offset calibration, automatic true mechanical stage leveling, and dual automatic multi-function syringe tip/needle cleaning stations can dramatically increase print quality while decreasing setup and calibration time.
Despite being the world’s most advanced 3D bioprinter, Aether plans to sell base units of the beta edition for $9,000, a tiny fraction of their actual value. Aether expects to have a commercial edition of Aether 1 available for public sale sometime in 2017.