A simple and high-resolution stereolithography-based 3D bioprinting system using visible light crosslinkable bioinks

Biofabrication. 2015 Dec 22;7(4):045009. doi: 10.1088/1758-5090/7/4/045009.


Bioprinting is a rapidly developing technique for biofabrication. Because of its high resolution and the ability to print living cells, bioprinting has been widely used in artificial tissue and organ generation as well as microscale living cell deposition. In this paper, we present a low-cost stereolithography-based bioprinting system that uses visible light crosslinkable bioinks. This low-cost stereolithography system was built around a commercial projector with a simple water filter to prevent harmful infrared radiation from the projector. The visible light crosslinking was achieved by using a mixture of polyethylene glycol diacrylate (PEGDA) and gelatin methacrylate (GelMA) hydrogel with eosin Y based photoinitiator. Three different concentrations of hydrogel mixtures (10% PEG, 5% PEG + 5% GelMA, and 2.5% PEG + 7.5% GelMA, all w/v) were studied with the presented systems. The mechanical properties and microstructure of the developed bioink were measured and discussed in detail. Several cell-free hydrogel patterns were generated to demonstrate the resolution of the solution. Experimental results with NIH 3T3 fibroblast cells show that this system can produce a highly vertical 3D structure with 50 μm resolution and 85% cell viability for at least five days. The developed system provides a low-cost visible light stereolithography solution and has the potential to be widely used in tissue engineering and bioengineering for microscale cell patterning.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Bioprinting / methods*
  • Cross-Linking Reagents / chemistry*
  • Hydrogel, Polyethylene Glycol Dimethacrylate / pharmacology
  • Ink*
  • Light*
  • Mice
  • NIH 3T3 Cells
  • Printing, Three-Dimensional*
  • Tissue Engineering


  • Cross-Linking Reagents
  • Hydrogel, Polyethylene Glycol Dimethacrylate