A direct laser bioprinting (DLBP) system is introduced in this work. The DLBP system applies visible-laser-induced photo-crosslinking at a wavelength of 405 nm using the photoinitiator VA-086. It is shown that such a system can fabricate vertical structures with fine features (less than 50 µm) and high cell viability (greater than 95%). Experimental characterizations and theoretical simulations are presented, and good agreement is seen between the experiments and theory. The DLBP system is applied to the fabrication of (1) cell-laden hydrogel microgrids, (2) hydrogel microwells, as well as a test of (3) cell encapsulation, and (4) cell seeding. The DLBP system is found to be a promising tool for bioprinting.
Keywords: biofabrication; bioprinting; microwells; poly(ethylene glycol); tissue engineering.
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